Supernanny Seeks Alabama Parents

I received a notice that ABC’s Supernanny is casting for parents from Alabama to be on Season 6 of the show (I cheerfully presume I received this notice due to and NOT because a neighbor tipped off the producers to my dubious parenting skills).

You’ve probably seen the show, where some seemingly incorrigible child has taken brattiness to a new level and the parents have either rolled over in defeat or become de facto prison wardens. Conditions have usually gotten so out of control that the family is desperate for help. Enter Supernanny Jo Frost, or “Jo-Jo”, to observe the family in action and provide a discipline plan, establish a routine, and introduce the structure that puts everyone back on the road to familial bliss. What is it about a British accent that’s so authoritarian and credible?

I find that the nanny and dog training reality shows (ex., It’s Me or the Dog – another British accent) often have a genuine educational value because deal with behavioral issues, a universal topic for every mom. Even if we can recognize an ineffective parenting technique when we see one, we can admit we’ve also mishandled situations ourselves. The truth is that we all struggle occasionally with appropriate discipline, boundaries, and avoiding good cop/bad cop routines between parents or caregivers.

I’d like to think it is a sincere desire for help and not fame (balloon boy) that motivates participants. Even though we observers can smugly tsk tsk the parents we see, it’s insightful to recognize our own negative tendencies. In these parenting shows, as in shows on improving dog behavior, the final revelation is always that most problems are actually rooted in the expectations and behavior of the adults who are in charge. With apologies to Gandhi, it turns out that we must be the change we want to see in our families.  

Here’s what Supernanny’s producers are seeking:  “…unique families with toddlers to teens with ordinary to extraordinary circumstances; teen moms; siblings raising siblings; grandparents raising grandchildren; same sex parents; stage moms; pageant moms; parents with mean girls or bullying boys; culturally diverse parents; and blended families where both sides are seeking help.”

If you’re interested, you may email Jen Walsh along with the reason for your interest in having Supernanny’s guidance: . You may also nominate a family for the show. Perhaps a family you know (maybe your own) could replace its whining with a bit of the legendary British stiff upper lip.

Note: The Supernanny site includes reward charts, bedtime routines, and parent generated suggestions.