Christian Musings, Parenting Series, Purpose and life's mission

Millenial Parenting

Hello WonderBeau People! 

In my last post, I asked what topic you would like me to post about. 

After a whatsapp chat with a reader, the reader asked that I write a piece on absentee parents. 

A large part of the chat was about how unrestrained children are these days and the role the parents of today are playing or not playing as the case may be. 

Real parenting seems to have deteriorated over time. 

I will tell you what I mean. 

While I was growing up, children my age were popularly referred to as children of now-a-days. 

That reference was of a derogatory nature, followed with a huge world-weary sigh of long-suffering tolerance. 

And if, our elders were not too tired of our shenanigans, they would launch into comparisons between their time and these days. 

They would go back memory lane of how they dared not think, much less do, what we children did way too easily for — or should I say against — the comfort of their strict upbringing. 

If someone had told me, I would find myself saying the same thing our parents and their parents were saying about my age group, as adolescents, I would have argued the point. But here am I thinking “children and teens of these days”. But I digress. 

In our grandparents’ days, theirs was mostly communal parenting.

They often recalled how they couldn’t get away with anything even if they tried — and try they did. But they always got caught, sooner than later, because there were eyes everywhere. And someone was bound to report a misdemeanor to the family of the miscreant. 

Isn’t that the grandchild of so and so?” An observing elder would muse to the neighbour.

Elder 2 will squint their eagle eyes  and say, “Sure is.”

Before, the cocky lad or lass gets home, an itinerary of their escapades has been given to the family. 

With a few clever questions, the truth or the lies have been discovered to chagrin of the youngster. Disciplinary actions are swiftly taken, of course. 

Apparently, in a system like that, you were forced to behave and act accordingly. Otherwise, there will be immediate consequences. 

People assisted one another back then. Communities came together to help individuals and nuclear families to stand on their feet. There was more of inter-dependence than independence. Those were the days when trade by batter was how they lived and the means of exchange. 

Having money was not a strong desire, but belonging to a community

Belonging to a community, was how you grew, how you have security, how you survived — like a herd. 

You were protected because everyone was looking out for you and others. People had and covered one another’s backs, because all they had was one another. 

Since farming and animal husbandry were the major occupations, they had barn raisings. Were a community would come and assist in building a house and barn for a family. They made a community party.

It would seem that animals know how to live better than us these days, because we don’t move in herds…sorry…community anymore.

It’s all about me, myself, and I country. Commitment issues are flying around all over the place and no wonder. We never really learned the essence of being committed to were one has chosen to belong. 

Even basic friendship sucks these days. You hear people say, you can be out of touch with someone for years and if you reconnect like you never parted ways then *that* was friendship. 

Can you believe such hogwash? I couldn’t believe my eyes when I first read it on social media — yep — social media, of all places. I felt sick to my stomach after reading that. I just couldn’t digest it. It was that bad. Horrible, in fact.

My first thought was, who took it upon themselves to check up on the other all those years the “friends” were incommunicado?

How can you even call someone your friend when you have no idea what they’re doing or how they are doing? 

Like I said, the evolution of friendship in today’s world is sickening. Is it any coincidence that suicide rate is high? And people who were supposed to be their “friends” cannot account for why they committed suicide? How awful is that? 

They say suicide rate is high these days, because there was a time when it was so low, it was a rarity. And why not? The community knew who was who, because in most cases they cared. They check up on their neighbours. You couldn’t be lonely even if you tried, because your community won’t allow you. That was real community service — not the one related to jail sentence. And if, if someone does take their life, people will be able to tell why. And then, it’s mostly because the victim refuses to accept or ask for help — not because there was no one available or willing to help! 

Interesting how community and communication has so much in common just by looking at them. There’s a certain kind of intimacy that accompanies real community and communication. 

Now we have neither communication nor community. We have deliberately lost them. What is worse, is that we don’t seem to care. 

From what I have observed, it’s tough on two parents trying to raise one child. I can’t imagine how it’s like for single parents. 

Which is why a lot of parents depend heavily on the schools and the government to take some of the burdens away. 

But a lot of today’s parents are depending too much on others to raise their ward. 

I can’t seem to understand how some parents can bare to ship their babies off to boarding schools. I understand late teens having to go because of distance of the school that most matches the teens’ personality, but unfortunately the reasons are more… cold than that. 

Mostly, it has more to do with the parents’ convenience than it is in the children’s geniune best interest. The parents are too busy, the children are too rowdy, they are getting in the way, and whatever else you can think of as excuses. 

Then they come for holidays — that is if  their parents allow them to come home for holidays and they are not shipped off somewhere else until schools resume. If they do come home, once the children get on their nerves, the next thing they’re thinking about, is sending them to summer camps.

Now, I think summer/holiday camps are necessary for teens development and social skills. But what bothers me, is that some parents don’t send their wards to holiday camps for the children’s sake. They do it because, it’s easier for them that their children are not around them. 

So you have many people who don’t know their children and children not knowing their parents, at all. 

Children who feel unwanted, tolerated and are wondering where/were they belong because they never had a real family. 

At this point, someone like me begins to wonder why people bother to have children, when they are: unwilling to be part of their lives, unwilling to invest mentally, emotionally and spiritually into the children’s lives?! 

I don’t understand. Don’t we have enough orphans in the world already? Must we have more children who can’t even enjoy the physical presence of their parents? All they get from their parents is money, money and more money…….

To be continued. 

 Stay rapturable. Shalom.💎💜


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