· At a get together, a 15 month old child was sipping Coke from her sipper.
· Frantic calls were made to her, “We are getting late”; young messengers were sent to call Aunty. But the Aunty takes her own sweet time to join the group. And then informs the rest of us with a smile… “She wanted to play in the water, so had to oblige”. ‘She’ is a 7 year old!
·A mother of a 6 year old laments, he doesn’t eat anything, he just drinks 1.5 litres of Coke/Pepsi and 4-5 packs of Chips/Kurkure every day.
·A 5 year old will not go to even a next door birthday party or to a mall without a new dress and matching accessories.
·An 8 year old is whining non-stop about a stain on her party dress much to the chagrin of the mother as well as the onlookers at the party.
These are just some of the illustrations, but I am sure you got the drift!
Incidents like these are all around us. Little children (I am not talking about the 2-3 year olds) ragging and harassing their parents and parents are letting them do so. Though, they are not happy about this situation. Most of them have that harried, tired, frustrated and even embarrassed look on seeing their children in this state. It is seen that we give in to the irrational demands of our kids too easily and too soon.
Ever the opportunists, children are experts in perceiving and capitalizing on parental indecision. And thus 2-3 incidents in a row, slowly and steadily the child knows what he needs to do.
Our generation of parents are all educated and well read. We have more exposure than our own parents ever had. So don’t we understand that we can mould a child the way we want!
A good friend had remarked; “We were obedient children and are now obedient parents”.
Of course as parents, we can’t dodge all tantrums, but we certainly shouldn’t be giving in and meekly letting the child have his way. Read somewhere that parents should make rules and then stick to them with determination and consistency. Bedtime is always to be at a certain hour, only certain TV programmes can be viewed, cold drinks and chips cannot be staple diet etc etc.
We all love our kids and certainly want the best for them. If we can give them the best of the clothing, footwear, toys, gadgets, education et al, why not the best of behavior and attitude? Why not instill the right habits from the beginning? Why can’t we be better coach and guide to our children?
- I am not an expert on parenting.
- I am not a Hitler Parent.
- My child is not an epitome of all goodness.
- I do not hate children.