Parenting is a tough task, involving many aspects and playing various roles. As parents, everyone looks out for the best for their children and wants to protect them, not leaving them a single thing to be worried about.
Parenting is indeed an exhausting responsibility, and just as Sue Atkins says, “There is no such thing as a perfect parent. So just be a real one.”
For children, the ideal world is a fairytale, but a real-world exists beyond it that is cruel, and harsh in reality, and your child should know about that.
For kids, parents are the first teachers, hence you should be the first one to tell your kids about what is happening around them. Although, on average Indian families do not know how to communicate about serious topics. Desi parents tend to lighten up the concept of educating their young ones, because eventually they will have their own voice, and might even hurt your sentiments.
Is it really beneficial to hide all the real-world problems from them? No, absolutely not! Sooner or later, they have to be in the place to deal with everything that you aren’t discussing right now. Be it money talks, sex education, politics, and much more. It is better to strike a conversation about these life issues and topics in a healthy space.
In times of rising social, political, and economical changes out here, it is the need of the hour to educate them about difficult subjects of life. Recently, education has been digitalised and the phones are mostly with the kids, and it is better to create a dialogue between kids and you before they stumble upon any news, harsh notification, etc.
According to the responses by 24 parents around India, it makes clear that most of them feel that their children can be misguided via the internet or by bad influences around.
Be it a period talk, or informing them about poverty, one needs to ensure that this is not disturbing them but making them safer, strengthening your bond with them and increasing knowledge about the real world, as it just isn’t the fairytale that exists.
Adding to it, over 54.2% of parents haven’t talked about sex education with their kids yet, 25% of parents haven’t informed kids about mental health, and around 8.3% haven’t shared anything about periods.
Out of 24 responses, about 66.7% of parents feel the appropriate age to talk about any major topic to be around 10-15. Whereas, 25% of parents feel that children should be informed about things happening around the age of 5-10. Although, there are 12.5% of parents who differ and think they should tell children aged 15-18 about anything serious. If you do not prepare your kids early, then they simply do not understand their capability to express their emotional side or tackle their behaviour.
A mother shares, “We do talk openly about anything and discuss with kids. We don’t impose things on them. We learn from them as the whole universe is changing.”
Although, some families are liberal and have initiated a healthy space where their children can come up to them and question certain things.
Whereas there also subsist parents where children don’t talk to them about anything at all. These families are usually patriarchal and orthodox, where there is no tête-à-tête between family members regarding anything.
Yes, with time the parents are evolving and learning. It’s still a long way to go! Also, it is perfectly fine if there exist days when you feel like you’re not doing it well, or aren’t enough. Eventually, you can learn, and unlearn things with time and patience. Yes, talking about all of this might turn out overwhelming, but little steps are all it takes.