– My wife and I are expecting our first child, a son and we are so excited, I mean who wouldn’t but, like all things that excite people there is always a worry, we too are and that is merely how we will raise our son and his siblings when they too come, what sort of adults they will be later on in their lives. Agreed or not everything people are is their upbringing – character and attitude wise. In short, how one raises kids is the grown ups they will be, the lessons and corrections are what they will carry in adult life, the discipline meted is what they will remember and try build their lives around.
Apparently their seems to be only two ways of raising kids as illustrated in the following story of two neighbors who planted tomatoes in the gardens. Neighbor one, a young man in his early thirties, and neighbor two an old man in his late eighties.
Both neighbors planted their tomatoes on the same day. Neighbor one, seemed to care more for his plants and always supplied them with so much water, watering them twice to three times a day, while neighbor two seemed not care so much for his plants and only watered them a little, twice- in the morning and evening.
This pattern by the two neighbors went on for three months till the plants were grown and ready to produce fruits. One day heavy rains fell and the two neighbors had different experiences with their plants; -Neighbor one’s plants were easily uprooted and washed away despite having supplied them with much water while neighbor two’s plants were unscathed. So neighbor one asked neighbor two why his plants were not destroyed and the old man explained this “its true plants need water but over supplying them with it leaves them with surface built roots only since they don’t have to seek both water and other nutrients so far from the surface as they get it easily.
I too had the temptation to supply some much water to my plants but i decided against it and supplied them with only enough and they could seek the rest on their own and by so doing they developed deeper roots in seeking food and nutrients, more reason why they didn’t get destroyed.”
The two neighbors represent the two ways parents raise children.
-Neighbor one represents a group of parents that supply their children with everything without teaching them responsibilities and making them aware of difficulties, these are willing to meet any demands made by their children in the name of love, they don’t ask for effort from their children in acquiring things they demand for, and the final result is raising adults that are so lazy, dependent, an easy life kind who would easily commit crimes to have things when in need, some even commit suicide when faced with utter difficulties because they weren’t made aware of them.
-Neighbor two represents a group of parents who supply their children with basic needs but are sure to make them aware of life’s difficulties and teach them duties and responsibilities in both acquiring these needs and making the best use of them. These parents don’t just love by giving, they also love by refraining to give – it hurts to refrain giving your own children but the result is seen, adults raised by these kinds of parents easily become responsible and self reliant, and because they are made aware of difficulties earlier, they tend not to be wasteful. No matter how hard life gets the latter find a way to survive coz they are both aware and psychologically prepared for such times.
The choices are only two and each parent can choose whichever one they want and the result will be seen in future, my wife and I choose the latter.
Mbanga, Irvine Ilukui.
United States of America.