Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Bad parents, we blame you - The Malaysian Insider

Bad parents, we blame you

January 26, 2011

JAN 26 — Thanks to an outbreak of bad parenting, I automatically cringe when I see children at shopping malls.

Invariably, they tend to be little snots. The parents just watch idly as their charges shriek, scream, run, fall and occasionally accost a random passerby.

These aren’t urchins from Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist. They’re not street children without parents to keep them from running wild. The children have parents and their parents are obviously not doing a good job.

It’s hilarious how I end up exchanging stories with other adults who tell me their own parents would not stand for the behaviour kids get away with today.

All my father had to do was give us a look and we would quieten down. Not so now. I see parents pleading, cajoling and begging their children to behave.

The worst are the ones who act as though their children are doing nothing wrong. God forbid anyone try to set their precious darlings right.

I don’t think corporal punishment is always the best recourse but children need to understand that actions have consequences.

If children are allowed to behave like untamed beasts without check, they will grow up believing that they have carte blanche to behave in whichever way they want.

Why even take children to malls in the first place? Malls are horrible places to take children. They’re crowded, stuffy and, in some cases, even dangerous. Parents these days are far too lazy to think of alternative ways to keep their children productively entertained.

Read to them. Actually play with them. Sing with them, make crafts with them, cook with them or maybe just talk with them. Organise playdates with other parents and maybe take turns to look out for the children while they play.

Please, parents. Stop torturing other people with the antics of your ill-brought up children because they reflect badly on you. You’ll likely be regarded a bad parent and guess what? You probably are.

~Bad parents, we blame you - The Malaysian Insider

* Erna Mahyuni blogs at when not writing for a living or dabbling in the performing arts.

Currently plays too much Dragon Age.

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