How would you react as a Parent?
So, in a group I am in on Whatsapp. We discussed about the trending topic of a young chap who was absent for two exams (Math and English), failed woefully in the other exams and passed only Music and Geography after his father had spent 21000 dollars for his education.
Before I ask the obvious question, which is already the subject of this blog. Let us state some fact. I am a new parent of few months experience and let me state parenting is no child’s play. It is for the strong in Spirit, soul, and body. It is for the strong Spiritually, physically, materially, and financially. It can drain you, but it is also an amazing experience. Another fact is this, once a child comes into the world 80 for some, 90% for others, of your time, effort, work might be channeled towards making sure the child gets the best you can afford (P.S some go overboard with this). Quick advice: make sure you make out time for yourself and your spouse and also your future because those children will leave. So inasmuch as it is your duty to take care of yourself. It is also your duty to make sure you do not endure life throughout and not have a retirement plan for you and your spouse.
So back to the story so when you have sacrificed so much for your child, especially in this Lagos with all its uncertainty from work, to traffic. The child intentionally becomes a rebel by being absent for two exams what would you do as a parent. Beat the child, talk to the child, punish the child? Should children be ever beaten if they offend or should it be all talks?
My view is there is a time for talking which should be more, there is a time for the rod in love not born out of emotion but out of correction and there should also be a post discussion punishment. Where you and the child sit down to discuss the offence, why the child did what he or she did, why the punishment had to be dished out and what you expect from the child going forward. Communication is key to be honest regardless of the results. Let me emphasize, effective communication is key. You must not listen to respond alone but listen to actually know what the true situation of things are and to find a lasting solution. Easier said than done I hear some parents say. It must be done especially in a generation that google gives different answers, you must be able to set your family on the ideals you want them to follow. I have seen parents give all the attention to their children and still the child decides to go the miscreant way, I have seen parents do two jobs and even travel out of the state just to give their children the best they can offer and the children turn out okay. There is no one size fit all. You can only make sure to create time for your children (it is a sacrifice even in the midst of the hustle and bustle in life), Listen attentively to them and encourage they speak up about everything and anything. Give them answers to all their questions and if you do not have the answer look for it and let them know you are searching for it and when you find it share. Make sure you teach them about the values of valuing people above objects.
I will be scolding that child. Call me old school, I turned out okay didn’t I but we will still have that talk after it. A child must have a certificate even if he intends pursuing a profession like music, acting and the likes. If he can be disciplined in getting a certificate, he or she will apply such discipline in life and their chosen field. My 2cents. Let me hear yours.
Shout out to Gene Deitch who directed Tom & Jerry and Popeye Cartoons. The news of his death filtered in amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and still we the lovers of Cartoon will remember. He passed, on the 16th of April 2020. Growing up was fun because of cartoons like Tom & Jerry and Popeye the Sailor man with his Spinach which in way taught kids about the hidden but powerful qualities in our vegetables. I will do a write-up on him in the coming weeks.