My clients teach me a great deal about life and parenting. I have one young lady that plainly told me “its best my parents just spilt up because they quarrel too much”. Then I have another child telling me she is soo sad because “daddy doesn’t live at home anymore”.
The notion of the nuclear family is changing rapidly. The “normal”, “nuclear” family is almost non existent in today’s society.What I am finding the most, is that the daddy’s are missing in action. Firstly a good portion of fathers are not with the child mother when they child mother brings the child to see me, and even if the fathers are in the household they are too busy with work and other women to take the time that is needed for their children.
Beside the issue of the larger portion of fathers being a waste of time in terms of parenting because of different and diverse issues, there is the problem of basic parenting. Firstly the times have changed so no longer does society or the community take the time to discipline a child. There is a saying it takes a village to raise a child and in the times before the village used to take a valid interest in their children and take the time to correct them and raise them properly. But capitalism stepped in. Let me tell you capitalism is more than an economic phenomenon it is a world wide trend of a change of life. Society now only cares about itself. The village no longer cares about the next door neighbor’s child.
Ok back to my point on parenting. Times have changed and one of the problems is that parents go to different extreme with their kids. One extreme is to go to “well in my time” it was this way so you will have to do it this way. The youth of today will deliberately do it the opposite way because you just said back in your time!!! Young people will automatically rebel when we tie the ropes too tight when it comes to discipline and parenting. But then there is the other extreme of letting the child do as he/she pleases. Children need structure both parents cannot be working and leave the child at home unsupervised for a long period of time!!!!
In order to discipline children they need to have rules, guidelines and structure. Therefore leaving a 6 year old at home alone after school for 2 hours spells of disaster when that child hits 13 or 14. The cute 7 year old that throws tantrums and will ” grow out of the phase” spells disaster because chances are the tantrums will get progressively worse. Dressing a 8 year old in halter tops and short skirts is cute but when she reached 12 or 13 that will spell disaster…
Letting the child do what he/she likes with no consequence for action spells DISASTER!!!!
Therefore it is not the responsibility of the counsellor or psychologist to “fix” the child. Parents need to start taking responsibility. Fathers needs to have a input into their children’s lives. Mothers cannot do everything! When fathers and mothers fight, argue and are at wits ends with each other no one else suffers but the child. The child can manipulate the situation and play one parents against the other to get what he/she wants or they can be sad and frustrated with the situation. Whatever the child chooses to do is an equally destructive path. I remember calling one father to come in to speak with me because the child cries and becomes very sad when she misses her father. You know what that man said that he has NO TIME!!! What kind of fathers we have out there that has no time for their CHILDREN!!!! The child is quite distraught when the father makes promises that he cannot keep. The disappointment the child feels when the father calls to say I coming in 5 mins and it takes him 5 hours, 15 beers and some time by the other woman first!!
Its time for parents and society to be more responsible. Children cannot parent themselves, they need love, support and GUIDANCE. Its time for parents to step up to the plate and start working to save our youths.