This much I now know – parenting is highly personal.
There have been so many things being a parent has taught me, these last (nearly) 15 years, but one thing stands out – what’s perfect for me, is perfect nonsense for somebody else. The other person does not even need to be from a different culture; two people in the same house too can look at an issue so differently, that the very act of seeing the issue becomes larger than the original one.
To give you an example – the way my husband and I approach my daughter’s education. Now, both of us are fairly ‘cool’ parents; but, we have inherently different philosophies when it comes to her education – he believes she must put in a goodish bit of hardwork, this being a landmark year. And even though he does not care for her to top her class, he wants her to make an effort to focus and perform to the best of her ability. But I let her dilly and dally; I encourage her to read story books, even the day before her Maths exams. (I believe anything that relaxes you is good for you – and stories help her relax). Sometimes, I worry if we’re just confusing the child – one parent glaring that she’s picking up her “comfort read”, and another beaming for the same reason!
If there can be so much of a variance between a wedded couple, can you just imagine what it is like out there, in the world? And that, perhaps, explains why some kids are always neat and organised and others are mess pots; some kids are always civil and polite, and others, perfectly rude. Is it any surprise then, that there can never be one set of rules in parenting?
All this and more struck me when I wrote some blogs for Parentedge. I had, frankly, never introspected much, being a happy-go-lucky parent, or, for that matter, read up a whole lot either. But, hearing other people’s experiences – even if they are not always something I would agree with – taught me that there are very many ways of addressing the same issue. And while there’s no right or wrong way of doing something – broadly speaking – there is always a better way of doing it. And that much, you can learn from other people’s experience.
And just for that, I’m grateful I;ve gotten onto the bandwagon of parents who not just take an active interest in their kids’ lives, but also find out where and how they can help.
With that, I wish you all good bye (for the moment) and good luck with parenting.
It matters, you know…