I am probably the last person who has any say in any sort of parenting, considering that I do not have any love lost for small children, I do not plan on ever becoming a parent in this universe (there must be a me somewhere in an alternate universe with the maternal touch, right?), I have no child-rearing experience being the youngest kid in the family, and I wouldn’t bother picking up some parenting book even if I was bored on a deserted island. (why would there be parenting books on deserted islands anyway?)
But what I know is that you got to crush any sort of rebellious attitude before they can even properly form. I’m not saying that you should be so strict that you can see your kid’s soul dying in your grasp, but the thing is, kids shouldn’t be allowed too much freedom. And anyone under 18? They’re kids, and should be properly controlled still.
I’m saying all these because an acquaintance of mine has a kid in JC1 (which would make him, 17, probably) who flunked his exams and has to be retained because he has a gaming problem. He games throughout the night and skips school the next day to sleep and the cycle continues. And the parent says that she can’t control him anymore because he’s so old already.
Which, in my opinion, is bullshit. Change the freaking wi-fi password, confiscate his gaming console/PC, install some sort of alarm system rigged to go off every hour in the morning and afternoon so he can’t sleep, whatever you do, at least do something, you know? The most basic thing for a kid is to go to school. I don’t give a damn if he studies or sleeps or skip classes as long as he goes to school. Maybe he’d learn through osmosis while sleeping in class or he can copy homework from his friends, that’s not the point.
The point is, why does he get to sleep in, play games and basically enjoy slacking while you as the parent are expected to go to home and sit there at your cubicle until 6 pm so that you can put food on the table and pay utility bills? Surely the kid has to do his part as well?
Of course, my co-worker, who has younger siblings of his own, shares my views, though we come to this conclusion differently. He genuinely wants his siblings to study and do well so that they can succeed in life and not because of some sort of warped ideology in my own head – you know, the ‘if one person has to suffer, while, the whole lot will suffer as well’ kind of socialist mindset.
But parenting advice is always fallen on deaf ears and people don’t want to hear that they are being bad parents or they don’t want others to meddle in their affairs, which I understand, since we don’t live in your family, and we can’t possibly expect to realise all the nuances and familial dynamics, but of course – spare the rod and spoil the child, this was how I was brought up and while I’m no upstanding citizen or fine individual, I think I didn’t turn out too badly, considering that I passed every subject eventually and I have some vague moral code that I follow by most of the time. And among my family (extended relatives included), I was probably the one who got disciplined the most, though I hardly ever learn from my lesson.