All sugar and no spice?
Photo: Murali Kumar K.
Are you an over-indulgent parent?
Keeping up: Is it a good thing?
Sumit turned seven recently. He has since been busy with his new Wii playstation his parents gifted him. They also threw him a party at the new kid’s hangout in the city’s swankiest mall. For return gifts Sumit’s friends received a Power ranger figurine each. Sumit’s parents reasoned that they had matched up to his friend’s Vidyun’s pool party, where they had a magician and acrobats to entertain.
After repeated pleas, Madhu, 28, just bought her two kids lazy-boy recliners. The kids find it so cool to sit in it and eat their Big Macs. Madhu’s kids are unfortunately obese at a very young age.
As affluence in society increases, it is common to find that more and more parents pamper their kids in ways that ultimately harm them. Often parents succumb to every whim of the child. The reasons for this over-indulgence is simple. With both parents working, children are left on their own for long periods of time. To assuage guilt they go overboard. Toy manufacturer Mattel realised that Barbie sales soared during the weekends in Kolkata’s Pantaloons store. A closer scrutiny revealed that there were boarding schools for girls in the vicinity. On weekends, parents visited their wards.
Children are conscious of what is available. “I am planning to take Shubho to Disneyland next summer. It will be beyond my own means, but I will ask my husband to pool in so we can fulfill my child’s Disney dream,” says Sarmistha, who works in a call centre and has a five-year-old child.
Parents need to handle their kids creatively. Involve kids in the decision making process within a set of rules. And also parents need to understand why the child demands one particular item. Is it because of inadequacy or is it peer pressure or is it attention?
The author is an educationist based in Delhi. She can be contacted at jeetu.khanna@ gmail.com
Send this article to Friends by