At the outset, I would like to thank all those readers and friends who gave their critical and valuable feedback on the topic good parenting. Many of you agreed that good parenting plays a significant role in the upbringing of the children and help them the most in becoming valuable citizens of the world. One more thing which is important here is that these rules of parenting apply across the world. The only difference can be of the prevalent culture of a particular country. The children and the parents have almost the same feeling towards each other. Before I take a few issues shared by one parent, I would like to mention about the mail received yesterday based on the life of Mother Teresa and her teachings. The summary of her teaching can be expressed in very few words. She said that the world is not suffering because of want of material things but want of love. She very appropriately said that every one of us is in the need of love and have strong desire for that but the same is covered by the expression which reflect the other basic necessities like food, clothes and shelter etc. The fact is that the poverty of love is more dangerous to live with, than the ones mentioned above. This made me to think seriously about the so called violent behavior of the kids. Is it the yearning for love and affection which drives them into that situation? When I read the mail further it became almost certain that the kids who remain deprive of love in their childhood are more likely to behave negatively than the others. Though some parents may not agree with this, but this is for sure that the children are not born with violent nature. Whatever they become or the way they behave is all because of the environment they have been brought up in. So the most important rule seems to be to widen the stretch of the love not only towards the children but among all the family members. The exposure to hatred and violence will not help children learn the lessons of love, compassion, sympathy and affection. When I say that there should be peace in the family and the society that means we are not promoting hatred but love. If the children learn the lesson of love from their family members, then the society and the world will be a better place to live. The seeds of love can be sowed in the family environment so that by the time the children get exposed to outside world they are already strong in their feelings towards loving fellow human beings. If the kids learn to love their parents and the family members then half of the problems of the society will be solved. Because negative habits once developed are not eliminated very easily. This once again proves that parents have to play the most important role in inculcating good values in the kids. We know in India joint family system has been prevalent for the last hundreds of years and despite the fact that over the last few years’ number of nuclear families is increasing. I would avoid debating about the pros and cons of the two systems but would like to share the problem raised by the parents and grandparents separately with the same issue in question. Some parents say that though it is good to have their parents with them and they are supposed to look after their needs in the old age. But they want their parents should not interfere in the way the kids are brought up by the parents as on today because the competition is very tough. I would suggest to such parents that if you want your kids to, listen to you and follow you then teach them by example. If you do not listen to your parents in front of your kids they would learn the same from you irrespective of your best try to inculcate good values in them. If you listen to your parents and express love towards them then your children will automatically learn the lesson of love. That is the reason I mentioned in the beginning that the lesson of love can be best taught at home and by the family members. Also in the families where the children are treated with love, they grow with the same feelings.
One friend raised the issue of home being made as the school and the children not liking that. He says that the children are to be taught the lessons of discipline, punctuality, regularity, respect for elders and so many other things. This is done in the school and the same is to be taught at home also, rather more importantly at home, then how come the school and the home be treated differently. I agree with him and would like to say what a child asked was not in context to these issues but related to academics. The mother used to ask him to do all the assignment and the work which was done in the school, at home also. I know a few parents forcing the children to solve a complete question paper again which he/ she had done a few hours back in the school during examination. We should understand if that is not too much on the part of such parents? One thing very rightly mentioned by him is that some schools do try to behave and act as home. I think there is nothing wrong in that because we always say that the children learn better in an informal environment than in a structured and artificially created situation which may be a school or any other place. The parents who are aware of the needs of their children can cope with the demands of good parenting than the others. While doing so they may not be right all the time but till the time they are aware of the mistakes that will not harm the children much. I would also like to thank for the feedback of the concerned parent (but not definitely the worried parent) when he says that he will share his success and the failure as parent with his kids so that they do not commit the same mistakes when they become the parents. If all parents take the parenting that critically then most of the problems of the children, parents and the society would be solved. Here I would like to mention a few more rules of parenting. Once your child is grown up and has joined the college, now as parent you should not interfere too much in his/her life. Allow the young person to decide for self because if you could not make any difference till now you would not be able to do much after this. Also at this stage do not keep on advising for everything he/she tried to do rather wait until they look for the advice. Also try to encourage them regardless of their achievements or failures because they are as grown up as anybody else to take decisions for themselves. If the parents do the things properly and make their kids learn good things during their childhood (till the age of 18 years) there would be no worry to them when the children are grown-up. The parents should be with whatever their sons/daughters do if that brings peace, harmony, love and respect for all. No job is big or small, superior or inferior , if the same does not harm others in any way. The success at the cost of love, peace and respect will not make anybody happy. Let this lesson be learnt by our children by actions and not mere words because if the parents do not keep their words then the children stop believing them. I know all this appears to be idealistic and difficult but I can confidently say that if practiced, then it would be very easy. Also all should remember that good things are not achieved easily. As stated, “The master of the garden is the one who waters it, trims the branches, plants the seeds and pulls the weeds. If you merely stroll through the garden, you are but an acolyte.” So, be the best resource for your children and see them turn into shady trees. In the end I would like to wish all parents happy parenting.