Spending time with family especially children is increasingly becoming a challenge for parents today. Work and greed has robbed away this precious aspect in child development. In Uganda today, we even have baby care centres that operate 24/7. Today children seem to be a burden even to biological parents. There are many horror media reports about children being neglected by their parents.
There is this Africa notion that it takes a community to raise a child but raising children without regrets is a responsibility of individual parents. You do not have to be a biological parent to spend time with adopted children. What would explain a parent dropping a child in a 24/7 day care facility? Is it laziness or tight work schedules?
“Parents need to fill a child’s bucket of self-esteem so high that the rest of the world can’t poke enough holes to drain it dry,” says Alvin Price. Find an excuse as a parent to ‘date’ (spend more time with) your children. As a couple you could split dating tasks according to gender. The father can go out with the girl while the Mother goes out with the boy. It may not require a lot of money. This helps a lot with self esteem building.
Just imagine a father who tells his daughter that she is beautiful and he loves her.A man may try to play the esteem card lie on her successfully. She is likely to respond like “I know am beautiful because my dad tells me so; what exactly do you want from me.” Dad may help with the assertive spirit.
One reason that fathers have such an influential role is because they tend to challenge their children to try new experiences. A dad’s involvement in his daughter’s life is a crucial aspect in the development of a young woman’s self-esteem according to a book ‘Fatherhood – Philosophy for Everyone: The Dao of Daddy’ written by Fritz Allhoff (Series Editor), Lon Nease (Editor), and Michael W. Austin (Editor) .The same book also shows how a father’s influence in his daughter’s life shapes her self-esteem, self-image, confidence and opinions of men.
Spending time together also helps with bonding. The world has changed to the level that some children see their parents once a month. The parent figure has been replaced with house maids, boarding schools, day-care centres, and wealth. Why should a parent be a stranger to their own children? Bonding helps parents relate better as a family.
Bonding makes it easier for children not to grow in fear of their parents. They look at parents like approachable friends with whom they can share with their challenges. This does not mean that children stop respecting you. The family walk alone may help make children open up about personal issues Parents may not be aware of since you are now friends.
Parents must show love and care to their children every day. This is possible only if specific time is put aside by parents for that. Acts speak louder than words. Commit to hug and peck them for hug and kiss at least every day.
If children do not get love at home, they may get other versions of it elsewhere. Telling someone that you love them means a lot than you can imagine. Take some time off to spoil your children. There are lots of activities you can do with your children like going to the movies, gyms, evening walks, shopping, and dinner.
It is truly disturbing for a parent to be jailed for failing to take care of their own children. Atleaset commit to help your children do their homework or share a meal together. It is no longer common to find women who would give up their career plans to sit down and raise children. More time with children ensures that you impart in them the right morals, values and beliefs. They say charity begins at home.
Most life skills and etiquettes are learnt at home. You do not expect the children to learn manners from someone else. Some of the maids are after their pay not necessarily the future of your children. Who does not want a close moment with loved ones? Kids who feel strongly connected to their parEnts cooperate willingly. Once in a while do what they want. David Bly once said that your children will become what you are; so be what you want them to be.