What would Flop do?

If you have a child that enjoys watching CBeebies than you have surely watched Bing at some point. If you haven't then you have definitely dodged a bullet.

For the uninitiated, Bing is a children's cartoon based on a series of books by Ted Dewan in which a preschool bunny experiences the world around him, under the guidance of a strange, soft-toy-crossed-with-a-saint creature called 'Flop'.

I've sat through endless repetitions of the brightly coloured children's cartoon. I'll be honest, I used to quite like it. Lily understands it and it has, in some circumstances, helped explain difficult concepts. I even quite like the 'rainy-bow' song. I know someone who managed to potty train their daughter after watching Bing and his gang go on the 'toilet train'.

He even featured on Lily's CBeebies birthday card (and it was shown on TV - #MumWin)

But over time, Bing has started to grate on my nerves.

He may not be anywhere near as annoying that stupid bloody cow mayor from Paw Patrol and he's definitely not as creepy as any of Justin Fletcher's various personas but my love of Bing is certainly waning.

Perhaps more surprising, is my growing irritation with Flop.

At first, I thought Flop was an example of a model parent. He is always patient. Always kind. Never shouts. Never hands the children over to a Mrs Flop and hides in the bathroom for 15 minutes with a smart phone and a glass of wine.

A few friends and I even had a running joke about 'channeling our inner Flop' and asking ourselves 'What would Flop do?' during a full on threenager tantrum.

And that's fine. As a parent, you take inspiration from just about anywhere sometimes.

But, whilst discussing this with my sister-in-law last weekend, I started to question whether Flop really is a saint. Or, if he isn't the very pinnacle of parenting that we should all aspire to, whether he is, in fact, the very worst kind of permissive parent currently breeding a generation of spoilt, entitled and rude little brats?


Maybe. But my case in point is the episode where Bing accidentally breaks Flop's phone after playing with it. He realises he has done wrong and decides to hide it in the bin. After a while, Flop realises his phone is missing and tries to find it. Then all is revealed, Flops response?

"It's no big thing, Bing"

Are you joking? That is a pretty big thing. You've told your child to be careful with your phone, they weren't and they broke it. Then they tried to cover it up.

Now I'm not the greatest disciplinarian, but that actually is a pretty big thing. I would expect there to be some form of punishment or discipline. Bing needs to know that he did something wrong!

I'm not advocating any form of shouting or violence here. But by passing it off as unimportant, Flop is missing the opportunity to teach Bing about consequences. Similarly, I get annoyed with the episode where Bing puts Sula's shoe down the loo. That is a big thing! Do something about it Flop!

Yes, I know it is just a kid's TV programme. But I am slightly peeved to discover that the Flop who I once thought was a fantastic parent, is actually some hippy-inspired anti-disciplinarian who is probably raising a psycopath (remember that time Bing killed the butterfly?).



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