A CARDINAL POINT FOR CREATING CHALLENGING ENVIRONMENT FOR THE YOUTHS
Chucks Dominic Morsi
Criminal vices amongst youths are an existential factor which as old as history has been a difficult challenge that has over the years; beat the efforts of man to completely eradicate it. This extrinsic factor, as it were, and of course, these days, the rate at which cultism, youths’ restiveness, getting deeply involved in occultism and ritual money making, yahoo plus and other antisocial activities synonymous with our youths, is mindboggling.
Just imagine, three days ago, I and my colleagues were driving along a street off Owa-eke Road, Boji-Boji Owa, it was a sizzling hot afternoon and there we were at a particular T- junction where we met two young boys within the age brackets of 18 and 20 years old making incantation and amulet fetishism. Looking at the other side, they were heaps of calabashes and other ritual nomenclatures scattered here and there by the road side. Those involved in this act are youths desperate to make quick riches at all cost. This ugly trend is something that parents should pay particular attention to, in other to redirect their children from the path of destruction.
Regrettably, most parents out there are directly or indirectly encouraging their loved ones into most of these evils, provided the children are able to make the money and flaunt it around. This may be all that matter to such parents, who might be doing so at the peril of their children. At last, they begin to regret their actions when the chips are down.
However, youths on their own, are generally known to be complex people by nature. As a parent, you need to understand some of those complexities to know how to begin solving the critical problems usually associated with them. Ignoring those things which we may regard as insignificant, could make youth problems may complex than it should. These days, youths give in easily to peer pressure, evil associations, and you must be curious enough to know those things that draws their attention from doing the right thing.
You must be eager to know the secrets they keep which they may not want you to know about. Then again, parenting an adult teenager may be more tasking than you can ever imagine. The reason is simply because such a person sees him/herself as an independent person and therefore could take it personal when you begin to infringe his or her private secretes or affairs. Don’t forget, there’s nobody anywhere who is going to guide you through on how to handle your child, but you have to do it yourself despite all odds.
Peculiarly, getting along with today’s kind of youth can be most challenging. Their crucial problem in many ways than one presents stress and other related issues in the family, including tension and anxieties, however, a good parent should know that no child could train him or herself without being guided. And as a good parent too, you must do well to let your child understand that you mean well for them, even when they feel as if you are always ‘teleguiding’ them.
On the other hand, the youths must come to the realization that there is no truth in believing that your parents are like imperial overloads slave-driving your life. No, that is not the case. Your parents do not want a situation whereby for your sake, the public should be pointing fingers at your family because of wrong reasons.
Again, they do not want you to give the reputation of your future away to the swine. You need parental guardian to pull through life. Make no mistake about it; any journey in life without parental backup will end in disaster and regrets. So, your parents’ actions over your life are only being careful to help you become a better person. They want you not to repeat the same mistake that they made that put them in the harm’s way. To avoid the dangers which life experiences may have bestowed on them (your parents) they have to put in the extra effort to guide and protect your interest in every possible way.
For example, if you are a minor as a boy or girl, you brought your lover to a dinner in your father’s house, that will make him frown. The reason is that, they are feeding and providing for your daily needs and so, you cannot afford to carry an extra burden, which you are invariably, not prepared for. Besides, you still have many years ahead of you to plan your life. They cannot fold their arms and watch you exhibit youthful exuberances at the expense of your future.
As parents, to help your child conquer the world and all its destructive elements, you have to set good precedents, abhor any act that your child is likely going to copy from and in turn affects them negatively. If you must teach your child dignity of labor, you yourself must not be lazy. If you must tell your child about honesty, you should be a person of good report and integrity. At all times, take responsibility; develop active leadership in the home. Teach your child what the school environment will not teach him or her. Set good examples and watch your children follow the footstep.
Each child from infant before becoming a youth must be charged with responsibilities in the home. Do not spare the rod and spoil the child because any bad character you are unable to correct now will surely haunt the child as a youth. Develop and have a cordial parent-child relationship. Do not be that kind of parent who sees their child as never-do-well but always learn to reward and praise your children when they do well, punish them when they offend.
It is important to know that one of the reasons you and your child don’t get along easily many a time, is that sometimes, you don’t know when to speak up or when to keep quiet. Take for instance, maybe your child (now a youth) wants to give up on his studies to join football, or your daughter is in a relationship with someone you don’t particularly like, they are times you need to say something but you cannot unadvisedly utter your disapproval on the bases of trivial issues (and then expect your words or advice to have impact) because the way you did when your son or daughter was 12 years old is not the same as when they are 18 or 19 years old now. You must change tactics and approach if you must get it right.
Youths often want things done their own way rather than your expectations. Learn to express your concern sometimes instead of your displeasure all the time. That can easily put your child off. However, be personally involved in the needs, goals, dream and ambition of your child who has now grown to become an adult youth. Once that is taking care of, is an indicator that the child is on the path to success and honor.
Every now and then, you need to teach your child basic issues of life, principles of hard work and achieving success, which is very important. You must avoid micromanaging your child’s life. In trying to build a successful life for your child, care must be taken in avoiding unnecessary criticism, regimentation (i.e., been too strictly, overbearing or domineering) them in such a way that they feel unpleasant with your uncouth manner. If you are often too rigid in your approach, you are likely going to kill your child’s excitement and this may lead to rebellion and on collision course with disaster.
Instead of being too rigid, concentrate on building their enthusiasm. Anything too rigid too quick will have negative impact on their love for everything around them including their studies and even the way they see society. So, learn to teach that child how to start off life with those things they may feel will help them to develop skills and concepts. As parents, you need to help that child acquire self-esteem needed to really succeed in both academics and in life generally.
In the decision making for the child, create opportunities for achievements, motive, incentive and the expectancy that doing something meaningful in life will result in successful achievements. Try to know your son or daughter very intimately, otherwise, what you may be too busy and unable to teach him today, the street and society will eventually teach him. That is why, if you look around today, we have more of villain youths than we have youths who are heroes. Why? Because the society is ever ready to offer you what you never bargained for.
One of the reasons we see bad boys and girls everywhere, is as a result of the consequence of their been left alone all by themselves without a guardian. Today, many girls are having sex before they are prepared for it and coming up with abortions and unwanted babies. This and other psychological problems related to why youths are committing all kinds of atrocities and antisocial vices threatening to overtake the society and us all. Even so, I will not put much blame on the child but on poor faulty parenting. And the only way we can change these habits and behavioral pattern of our youths and unwholesome lifestyle begins with effective parenting.
I am truly convinced that if you can retrace your steps today in living up to your parental responsibilities, your child instead of corrupting so early, would have been more useful if you take time to make sure he walks on the path of rectitude. Every good parent wants the child to be all-round stable – emotionally, physically and psychologically and otherwise. This is why every parent must give effective and patriotic supervision and the guide each child deserves in the choice of career, marriage and relationships. By that, you would have ultimately helped the child to conquer their fears and doubts about life and overcome other problems linked to youth generation.
In conclusion, today, you and your son or daughter have the opportunity to make a smooth transition, creating a challenging environment for the youths and they can become whatever they wish, if you are determined to help build the bridge for a life time of accomplishment for them. And the time to win them is now.