Parenting Tips

How close are you to your child? Part 1

By Olaitan Oye-Adeitan

With the understanding given last week that, “Parenting is a divine assignment”, comes along with it the question; “Do you know your child or that child in your custody?”

Knowing your child is seeing him/her beyond the surface which basically shows resemblance, complexion, height, stature, looks and the likes. 

It talks about understanding him/her, the ability to relate well as father/mother to child, sometimes like friends, being able to decipher when things are going wrong or well, sharing his thoughts, having a sound and robust communication on issues pertaining to his life and other areas of life as well.

Do you know the friends or association he/she keeps?

Oh, I can perceive someone asking, “Will I be monitoring him/her all around to know all these?

Well, we are still coming to that.

The story of a little boy readily comes to mind.

During class on a certain day, the class teacher asked the students to write what they would have loved to be if they were to be an object. 

Lo and behold, as the teacher was going through their responses, she came across the paper of that boy and on it was the answer, “I would love to be a mobile phone because my mother is closer to her phone than me”.

It was a response that got the teacher thinking.

The rest is history.

The message here is that, beyond the provision of all the basic needs for the children, parents need to realise that these children too have emotions, a lot go on within them, and they have pains, hurts and cheerful moments.

They are built with exceptional skills and unique abilities which they want to exhibit.

They just need someone who can give them a push, a backing, an encouragement, and a check, where necessary.

However, it only takes a parent, guardian, caregiver that would give his or her child/children quality time and attention to know all these. 

In addition, a very comfortable, welcoming and very friendly atmosphere must be provided to draw your child closer to you because children are very, very, sensitive to their environment and the truth is, children like adults too tend to unburden their heart to whoever cares to really listen.

If only parents could take time and reflect, allowing the leading of God who committed that child into your hands, they would begin to realize how much havoc is being done by so many things they take for granted.

When you create a servant-boss relationship with your child, you are building a chasm and not a bridge.

When you don’t allow your child to air his/her views, making whatever you say sacrosanct, you’re already creating a gap.

Yes, there are times you must stand your grounds but you must also give room for him/her to express his/her own views.

When everything is “Igbárùn, Ifọ́tí, Igbátí, Àlùbolẹ̀” all the time, i.e. slapping, flogging, a child will become sore afraid of that parent than the normal.

What a child needs is love and an always ready listening ear.

When you chastise, it must also be in love to enable the child to understand that it is for his own good.

If there is any key that opens the door of the heart, it is true love and that is what your child needs too so that you don’t begin to see him as a stranger.

We’ll continue from here next week, God’s willing.

Got questions, or comments?

Reach out to the author via 08055833311.

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