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Are you torturing instead of nurturing your child?

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by Devika Menon, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. Devika Menon

    Devika Menon Gold IL'ite

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    Yes this blog is long but i really think a few extra minutes for your child is a great investment and the returns hopefully would be a better bond between you and your child.

    Aparna had collapsed and had to be rushed to hospital in a state of shock. The reason? She was participating in an interschool dance contest and this 14 year old had always won accolades for her performance but unfortunately this time she lost and she just couldn’t accept defeat.
    After a few days Aparna was brought to me. A case of severe depression. She just didn’t want to come to terms with her failure.
    During the course of therapy, the foremost and the fundamental fear in her mind was not about the failure but about facing the parents and friends post that. She also revealed that sometimes the expectations from her exhausted her.

    This is a serious situation and one that needs to be remedied immediately to reduce these attacks of depression in children which is alarmingly on an all time high.

    Are we not expecting too much from our kids.. A lot more than they can deliver. We see kids as a perfect way to relive our dreams and aspirations. But is it fair on them? I’m not saying that one mustn’t have expectations from children but does those expectations not have to be in sync with their potential. First and foremost do bear in mind that each child is a separate individual.

    The most common causes of anxiety in children , is overexpectation and comparison to siblings, friends etc. Every day Harsh woke up to comparisons to his very intelligent brother. Every time he went out with his father he had to meet with humiliation in front of relatives , friends and sometimes total strangers ,when the father would compare him with his brother who excelled in studies and was very confident.
    Unable to bear this humiliation that reached a point where Harsh became a laughing stock, he attempted suicide. When he was brought to me , I frankly told the parents that it is not Harsh but the parents that needed counseling.


    It is a competitive field but all have their limitations. We must understand the limitations of our children. One may not essentially be multifarious They may not be good at everything. Putting pressure to achieve something that is way beyond their capacity should be avoided.

    What is important as a parent is to understand their qualities , potential, capabilities and limitations and set standards Mere comparisons just for the sake of competitons without realizing could be detrimental for their growth further. You would have unknowingly exhausted their growth.

    Most juvenile addicts are victims of severe inferiority complex. Most drug addicts take drugs to get that temporary high just to overcome the complex. Some take drugs that keep them awake to be able to contribute more to studies..Do they have to resort to these potentially dangerous means to achieve grades?

    Teaching the children to accept criticism positively is imperative. To use it as a means to grow not as a means to curb growth. They will always be those who criticize. Accept it when you realize theres a point ,try to rectify the areas and if you feel there is nothing wrong accept it as a competitors words . But don’t let statements drop your will to do something. Teaching them to accept criticism positively is imperative. To use it as a means to grow not as a means to curb growth. They will always be those who criticize. Accept it when you realize theres a point ,try to rectify the areas and if you feel there is nothing wrong accept it as a competitors words . But don’t let it drop your will to do something.


    I hate it when parents come to me and begin to criticize in front of the children. They take it to heart and believe me some never forget it. Ashok is now a man in his late thirties, but has problems with his father the reason for which goes back in time of two decades when his father was very insulting and humiliated him.Ashok still finds it very difficult to forget it.
    Children need respect too. It is very important to understand that. It is appalling when parents have done the damage then come to tell that they have no clue what went wrong.

    The same goes for schools. These days the trash behaviour of the schools and the punitive measures adopted are shocking to say the least. Even yesterday the paper carried an article of a girl who suffered a paralytic stroke due to the harsh punishments.
    A young kid of seven came to me as he refused to go to school. Frankly after hearing him , I wanted to tell him that its best he never go there again because such a school has nothing worth learning from . This kid was asked to bend his head into the garbage bin in the classroom , for not doing his homework. Another kid was asked to remove his shirt and stand on the bench for the same reason and when the father complained to the school for making the son strip, the school took offense and asked the father for a written apology or threatened to expel the student. The act seemed to be less of a crime compared to the word according to the school.


    Where are the ‘Gurukuls’ and ‘Gurujis’?

    Times are changing , expectations are changing and so the teaching has to change accordingly. I strongly suggest each teacher to go through atleast the basic child psychology course in order to be able to relate to the child better.All the schools teach children how to deal with bouquets but do they teach them how to deal with brickbats? It should be made a compulsion , as when you leave the world of education and deal with the real world this education will help you as much if not more than your academic qualifications.

    Brickbats are an integral part of life. One must know how to tackle it. Though we all love our children to excel in everything they do yet we need to prepare them to deal sportingly with failures. .Learn to accept brickbats the same way we are receptive to accolades.


    Do your duty as a parent but then understand your child is an individual in himself/herself. Very often we see schools conducting aptitude tests and suggesting a field. I have seen parents mostly love to hear that the child is good in the field of science. But then I guess aptitude plus passion is very important. There are many avenues for children now. Doctors and engineers are no longer the only fields. Don’t force them , its their life and they have to live with this profession for the rest of their life. Your forcing can only make them end like a bundle of burnt and worn out nerves.

    A request to all parents would be to try and spend a few meaningful hours with them. I know these days there is time deficit but you can definitely squeeze in atleast one hour of the 24 hours to just listen … to their words…. Their mind… and their body.. you cannot trade that with materialistic gifts .And remember these days on an average a child spends 8 to 10 hours in education if not more so you don’t have to essentially always talk studies. Get other topics in. Try to understand more about his peer group and his interests. Also try to adopt a friendly approach of dealing with them. Children prefer a friendly approach to an authoritative one. Also they are more honest if you need in a friendly manner.Also very important to let them have sometime to themselves. Don’t bury them with responsilities. Playing is important. I would infact even go to the extent of saying that let him/her go one hour less for his tuitions but let him/her utilize that in playing. The release of that energy is pivotal for their growth . He/She will end up healthier and happier. Mentally, physically and emotionally stable.
    We often talk about the hyperactivity syndrome. Children have abundant energy and if there is no outlet for that they will become hyperactive due to sheer frustration. It is their right to play , then do we have the right to usurp their childhood?

    If you plan to introduce your child to fields like TV , films , media etc , which make them a public figure, take care to see if they are mentally prepared. .Can the young minds take the fame and popularity in their stride or do they get carried away. We have seen many young lives get ruined because they are unable to accept their fame with profound insight When I went for a shoot recently I saw a mother of a tiny tot pinching him with her nails cause he wasn’t ready to give a shot. Isnt this absolutely inhuman.

    The pressure on kids in tremendous. The last few years I have been hearing and witnessing cases of children in the 10th standards( children of approximately 16 years) suffering from cardiac arrests and unfortunately some even succumbing to it. The rise in BP among children and other ailments first associated with elders is alarming. Please take notice. This is a warning. You want to do something, do now. No time to procrastinate in changing your attitude. There is no use crying over spilt milk.

    Parents must really take this seriously . More often that not you have the solution but are unable to see it. Inferiority complex, high levels of anxiety, extremely poor health due to exhaustion can all be dealt with , with your help.
    In my school there was a rule that the students who failed were given the monitors post. And respected. No one dared to fool around or ridicule them and the results showed that they metamorphosed into successful students.

    What is extremely sad is that in this whole process the child is sandwiched between the teachers, parents, expectations and ultimately loses his/her childhood. No time to play , no time to laugh.. We all fondly remember our childhood . Is your child living his life in a way that he will have wonderful memories of childhood or will he live to regret it.
    You have the key and the answer to that!!

    Love,
    Devika
     
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  2. apar_ram

    apar_ram Silver IL'ite

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    Hi Devs,
    Very nicely written. Its absolutely true in this day and age. We need to be really careful in making kids feel self confident. There is so much pressure from all directions. As parents we need to make sure they have enough free time and freedom to express themselves. Its so easy to get carried away and thrust our ambitions on them. Also its so hard to not compare your own children, but we have to definitely make sure that we consciously are aware and dont make the mistake of putting one child down. Thanks for the post, reading such posts will help keep us on track,
    Aparna
     
  3. Devika Menon

    Devika Menon Gold IL'ite

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    Wow what better pleasure than to have a friend inaugurate the blog.. thankyou so much Aparna.... First comments are always so special:)))

    Yeah being a counsellor i come across extreme anxiety driven cases Aparna and it really hurts to see young kids suffer. Incompetancy in parenting and teaching takes its toll on the kids.. This was merely a wake up call. Hope this helps.

    Love,
    Devs
     
  4. Traveller

    Traveller Gold IL'ite

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    Hi Devika,

    I came to read the article,close to my heart, but your profile picture distracted me LOL! such beautiful eyes... captivating. i'll retire for the day, refresh my mind and come back to leave my comments...

    Latha
     
  5. Shanvy

    Shanvy IL Hall of Fame

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    DM,

    A eye opener of a blog for many parents.

    I get those Are you crazy looks when i say i am not bothered about the marks my kids get in their exams, as long as they are ok with the fundamentals and concepts.

    but, i still try to be the mom, who is there to guide them to fulfill their own dreams and not mine...after all, it is their life, and they cannot live it with conditions and rules set by others...

    It is definitely true when you say the answers and keys are with us
     
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  6. purnima_2k

    purnima_2k Senior IL'ite

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    My dearest Devs,

    Its been a while since I interacted with you in the forum. My apologies for that. This topic is something that we as parents always need to be reminded of. Childhood of ours , as you rightly said remains ever green, but are we being justified of giving our children the same happiness and carefree days that we had? All summer vacations parents want the child to do some maths, or computer courses or IIT coaching etc. Where is the time for the children to have fun? It saddening and hurting to find our society succumb to pressures and compulsions, hope things change for the better, soon!

    Great blog my dear friend, heartwarming!!!!

    Purni
     
  7. iyerviji

    iyerviji IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Devika

    Very touching and very true. Now a days there is so much competition that every mother wants her child to be at the top. But all children dont have the same talents. I agree with whatever you have written. Since all kinds of children must be coming to you , you must be having good experience about them.

    I also feel sorryfor the children whose mothers thrust on them what they cant do. We should try to understand what is their liking and leave it to them to decide. Now a days children are very smart and they can take their own decisions under our guidance.

    If we have more than one child, all the children might not be the same, one will be average and the other will bevery smart. We should not differentiate between them or praise one and let down the other.

    Sorry I think my fb is very long. Let me stop here. I agree with your views on this subject and mothers can learn something.

    love
    viji
     
  8. easycrafts

    easycrafts New IL'ite

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    So very true..You have put up the right words in this issue and is definetely a eye-opener for many who are unaware of the pressure being mounted on the kids due to the behaviour of parents and pressure from comparisons..Each kid has a right to enjoy childhood and have good memories of it
     
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  9. Devika Menon

    Devika Menon Gold IL'ite

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    Hi Latha,

    Thankyou for the FB on the pic hehehee now wheres the FB on the blog???

    Waiting.......

    Love,
    Devika
     
  10. Devika Menon

    Devika Menon Gold IL'ite

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    Hi Shan,

    You are the perfect mom dear... Thats exactly how one needs to deal with the kids.. Academics are given way too much importance. It is shocking to see those graduated from various fields high on academics but low on life skills struggling to make ends meet in life.. Basically the whole system is trash... but then thats another story.. for the time being the support of the parent and the teacher will be the one solace a panacea for the stressed kids.

    Good to read your comment buddy;)

    Love,
    DM
     
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