Saturday, June 20, 2009

Are you in the life of a child?

Photobucket

If you really listen and have a conversation with children (as opposed to talking to them) you learn such a lot. They are little philosophers with an uncomplicated life view and the truths they utter are often profound, refreshing and very applicable to our lives as adults. If you are fortunate enough to have your own children, then I am sure you’ll agree with what I am talking about. If not, then closely observe them, next time you are around them and you’ll see I’m right.

Most adults, especially in India and especially those who are not experienced with children see children as a source to amuse themselves with. Some things that these well meaning adults do and some things they say make my blood boil. In the west, children are treated with a lot more respect and sensitivity. I really like that.

In India, a common thing which many folks do when they visit people is to tell a young child (who is 3 or 4) playfully “Your mummy is my friend. I am taking your mummy back with me. Can I?” Of course this makes the child cling to the mother. And if the child starts crying the visitor says “Oh no—I was only joking.” The child is still discovering things. They are still at a stage where they are learning that their mother being in the other room does not mean she isn’t there. Their world centres around their mother—the one person who means the world to them. How do they know that the visitor is joking? Let me elucidate this a bit better—if you are a woman and another woman said to you playfully that she is going to take away your boyfriend/husband for a holiday, just the two of them and leave you behind, you wouldn’t exactly feel good would you? Or if you are a man and another man told you that your wife/girlfriend was sizzling hot and could he take her out for a few hours and if he really meant it I am certain you would smash his face in.(Unless you are into open relationships and stuff like that) . I think you’ll agree now just how insensitive and inappropriate it is, to say this to a child.

Sometimes these visitors take a toy of the child and say that they want that toy. Of course the child refuses. The visitor insists that the child gives them the toy for just a little while. The child refuses further. Finally when the child is on the verge of tears the visitor says he/she really did not want the toy in the first place. Are these people demented? Or is it because they don’t know how to talk to children?

When I used to work at a pre-school (and I used to work in corporate environment earlier) it was the first time I understood what job-satisfaction really meant. It was something that gave me immense joy. Each Monday morning I was waiting to go back to work (something that I never thought was possible) and hated Fridays as I would not be seeing my lovely little students for two days. The parents used to often tell me the children felt the same way! The moment I reached school and opened the gate there would be a flood of children who would come rushing out shouting ‘Preeti aunty’, ‘Preeti aunty’ and I had to put my hand bag down and hug each one even before I entered . They were all in the age group of 3-4 and were very demonstrative in their affection. Oh the joy! I still remember every child’s name, what they liked, how they felt, what they said and even what they drew! (Some of them were really memorable and hilarious but I shall save that for another post)

Sometimes when I see some really badly brought up children (spoilt brats who are destructive, rude, inconsiderate,who run around causing havoc and spoiling everything in sight while fond parents watch indulgently) I feel sorry for them. One can say so much about the parents, even if one has not met them by merely interacting with the child. My colleague and I, at the pre-school where we used to teach, would often observe how some children were already far ahead in their cognitive skills, verbal ability, creativity and social interaction when compared to their peers. And in all these cases, these were the children whose parents really spent time with them, talking to them, having conversations with them, reading to them, showing them glimpses of a wide world outside. The slower ones were generally the ones who used to be parked in front of the television for insane amounts of time.

To a child (and I think this is applicable to most adults too) love is spelt T.I.M.E. A child is truly a lump of clay and you can mould it whichever way you want. As an adult around a child, it is a behemoth, immense and a terrifying responsibility—the fact that everything you say does matter and makes a big difference.

I think each of us who interact with children (even if they are not your own) will do well to choose our words wisely when we talk to a child and remember the following brilliantly summed up words:

Children Learn What They Live

by Dorothy Law Nolte (1924 - 2005)

If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.
If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.
If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.
If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy.
If children live with jealousy, they learn to feel envy.
If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.
If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.
If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.
If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.
If children live with recognition, they learn it is good to have a goal.
If children live with sharing, they learn generosity.
If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.
If children live with fairness, they learn justice.
If children live with kindness and consideration, they learn respect.
If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those about them.
If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.

77 comments:

  1. Loved your post Preeti. You are so right when you say you can say so much about the parents by interacting with their kids even if you havent met ... When I met my niece for the first time ..she said she didnt want any cheese on her pizza as she didnt want to become fat and ugly ...I was shocked that a 4 yr old was worrying about her weight ... until I heard her mum say the very same words :) At four she thinks being skinny is beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes very true..Here (mostly)they treat kids with respect..
    They consider the kids as individuals who have their own opinions,wishes,likes and dislikes..!!
    Ofcourse there are extreme opposites too..people who treat kids like pests..!!
    Nice post.

    G.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Geetha:Wonder why people who treat kids as pests have them in the first place. Thanks!

    poonam1:Body images are being thrust upon kids by media all the time. It is hard to escape.That is why I am against too much television.Parents can worry about their weights. You know the latest issue of Readers Digest Joy has an article by me on childhood obesity and unfit kids.So there ia another part to that side too.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I think about the art/skill of parenting v often. Basically because my sister has a 5 year old boy and she is always worried about him being restless always. His dad is in the ship most of the time, she is a teacher and they live in a town which does not have many options for channelizing the kids energy. I tell her the same thing-to spend more and quality time with him. But she gets frustrated so quickly and screams. Her son has picked that up, his pitch is high and he has become so moody. Pains to see that.
    Its easier to say "why do such people have kids in the first place" than actually managing it all well.
    I wish each parent had a little more idea on the kind of things you have mentioned in this post and more importantly, they implemented it in their lives.

    From an outsiders perspective (those who dont have kids) again, i wish we were little more sensitive. I liked your post. I am sure ppl who do ask such things to kids, dont realize the harm they do.. else why would they act like that at all? Wonder if some lessons in school should be about how to behave sensibly in life. Or maybe even that is part of parenting...

    Its vicious. and complex. and makes me feel I better not get into it. Even that is not easy..it bothers me.
    ~Tara

    ReplyDelete
  5. Extremely glad to see this post, something that is very close to my heart as well. I can relate to you so well.
    I work with autistic children, and my entire world revolves around them. Here you are talking about typically developing children (at least i think) but working with special needs children, its really angers me sometimes what other adults say thinking that oh the child won't understand or it doesn't matter as they really don't communicate the same feelings as you and I do.
    And honestly, some of these children are the true gems that exist in the world. With their unbelievable innocence and perspective. They are who they are and what you say about molding is absolutely right.

    Anyways, really enjoyed this post. And would agree with you that the west indeed gives more respect to the nurturing mind then some people in the east (don't wanna say all :P).

    Anyways, this is so long, it can be a post in itself!
    And I know how it to be away from them for even a few days, I had to take some days off to study for exams and it drove me mad that I wasn't able to interact with my kids.

    ReplyDelete
  6. As for the parents - sometimes I find it highly ironic that in most societies you need a license to drive, and be married but not one to have children. Are children so much the property of the parents that we cannot scan to see which people are even suitable to have them in the first place! what do you think?

    ReplyDelete
  7. I truly loved reading the poem, it conveys so much in such an easy manner and now you u'stand why.

    Preeti, your analogies totally hit the point you were trying to convey so very well. I completely agree on that. Personally, I had this relative of mine who once jokingly told the same to my niece and she got so upset and withdrawn with her and I just wanted to whack that lady hard on her head. Infact, she wasn't even apologetic of the fact that she had just scared the child by saying those stupid words. Seriously man!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Touched my heart....Children are indeed a lump of clay, who can be moulded the way we want..Few parents don't know what they want and infact, don't know what to give...so, confuse the little ones, too!!Fortunately, a few get excellent teachers to do the nurturing...But, that relationship lasts only for a short period....

    ReplyDelete
  9. OMG. Posts like this are difficult to comment on because you are blinking back tears and can't see the keyboard.

    When my little one passed out of pre school, the teachers wrote,

    We've worked with your flower,
    And helped it grow.
    We're returning it now
    But want you to know,

    Remember this flower,
    As dear as can be ~
    Though rightfully yours,
    Part will always belong to us.

    I can see why a pre school teacher can be one of the most satisfying of jobs.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wonderful post Preeti... how children are brought up will DECIDE how they will be when they are mature..its not just the parents and people who visit the need to take care but don't you think our educational system put loads of burden on those little shoulders?

    ReplyDelete
  11. Excellent post!! Points duly noted for future use :) (not immediate future :) ) The poem was brilliant.

    ReplyDelete
  12. totally agree.. and that poem sums it up perfectly... they can become only what they visualise and learn from their own experiences and understanding of it.. and we are indeed guilty of giving them more than the average burden, so many times.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Such lovely thoughts!! And I so agree with you :). Children are a source of so much joy. Even in their tantrums, I find solcae...'cos you get to understand their little needs and their smaller ways of wanting.
    I love kids and have always maintained that for a child to be your friend, don't fake the mannerisms, be one with them, and then you'll see how they open up.

    And when you smile at a child, show them that you really mean it.They are far better at recognising your emotions than we adults do.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Brilliant post. As kids, we were whacked, slapped, not given as many toys as we asked for, did not have cable TV...but we did have moms and grandmoms narrating stories, friends with whom we played out on the streets, dads who taught us to tell time and solve the rubik cube. Our parents knew parenting so well!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Awesome post,Preeti! I completely agree with you verbatim. I loved the added brilliant poem.
    I would like to show you another link which echoes your thoughts. It is http://www.abcwritings.com/childrenare.html

    ReplyDelete
  16. so right, preeti !! this behavior doesn't stop when the kids are older too.. then it is "do u get first rank in your class ?" or even older, "so will u become a doctor/engineer ?" :(:(

    ReplyDelete
  17. with the first and last- but one-para' you hit the nail on the head (in your inimtables style of course).. i loved this post, its so close to my heart.. thanks a lot for putting this up.. made great read

    ReplyDelete
  18. So very rightly said Ma'm! I never thought about it this way, though I've never been that way to a child. But I shall definitely keep that in mind. I totally understand when you say As an adult around a child, it is a behemoth, immense and a terrifying responsibility—the fact that everything you say does matter and makes a big difference. .I don't know what goes into parenting, and what kind of a parent I'd make, but what you said here will always remain with me. Thank you :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. nice post
    thanks for bringing in the poem. liked it.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I really enjoyed your post and from what I have seen of children I think it is usually the grown ups who need lessons and not the other way round. We do not know the first thing about responsibility, honesty or any other virtue we expect of a three year old. I guess parent-rearing must be tougher than child-rearing!!
    PS: I liked the poem:)

    ReplyDelete
  21. This is such a lovely post!!

    Every day my wife comes with stories of tinytots,how the kids love her and express their love.

    one day she brougt a small note which says... "You are very strict,but I love you..Swetha".

    What you said is very true. As much as possible, I try to kneeldown and keep an eye-to eye level contact with kids, it is so much fun to listen to them

    ReplyDelete
  22. I liked the way you narrated indian way of up bringing or interacting with kids. i very much agree with you, there is a lot of difference when compared to india and the western countries..

    ReplyDelete
  23. Strangely enough, little kids don't find me repulsive:). And it is in fact so much fun to talk to a child like an adult. They know you are kidding around and enjoy it too.

    "If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy." Now I know whom to blame for my habit of going in a hiding whenever any guest visited out home :).

    By the way, I've done the tag (finally) . Hope it lives up to your expectation :).

    As always, this post of yours was heart-felt too.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Preeti, I loved it when you said "Love is spelt T.I.M.E." It makes a lot of sense. Explaining how a lil child feels with your gf/bf analogy was hilarious but right on the mark. The people in the West do treat their kids like individuals but I see some habits like the pacifier, the stroller which do slow down a child's speech development and motor developments. When I have a child I would never put her in a stroller to make my life easy or a pacifier to keep her quiet!

    ReplyDelete
  25. like always, what a lovely post. True blue Preeti :)

    And how did the poem you were supposed to frame for a friend turn out? Finished yet?

    ReplyDelete
  26. Parenting is not easy and kids dont come with any instruction manuals. Most of the time you are banking solely on your instincts.Sometimes you are right, sometimes not.
    It is easy to blame the parents when kids turn out wrong but the fact is society is no longer so simple these days and the parents are not the only influence in our childrens' lives.
    Sorry for the longish comments but parenting is an issue close to my heart. Enjoyed reading this post.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Aparna: Please don't apologise for leaving a long comment!Thank you for writing.I agree with you 100% that parenting isn't easy.(Ask me! I have two aged 11 and 8 going on 18 and 45 :)) But there is no excuse for rude, ill mannered and impolite children.

    Partywith neha: Shhhh! Its a surprise! :) My friend doesnt read your blog, but reads mine!!

    Ashwini: :-) Sometimes you just might and it would be okay to. Before I had children I used to think a lot of things..Once you have them then you know more :)

    Brown Phantom: And why should kids find you repulsive? :-) Kids love Phantom--purple or brown :P Left a comment on your post :)

    Sunny raju: Yeah--they are more sensitive in the west.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Maddy: Does your wife teach? If so how old are the kids?

    Ida: Yeah--very right about parenting and child rearing.

    Phoenix:My pleasure. Glad you liked it.

    Stillness speaks: I have seen you with my kids. You'd make a WONDERFUL mother.Take my word for it. I know!

    AJCL: Thank you and glad you liked it.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Nandy: Oh yes!! You said it! This utterly silly inquisition continues well into teens, and as adults some nosey people have more things to ask.

    Gayu:Thank you for the link. Will surely see. Glad you liked it.

    Meira: I agree with all you said. A a little whack on the bottom never did anyone any psychological damage :)

    Prats: You're really good with kids. And very right in what you say here too.

    Dr.Roshan: Sometimes we indeed are. But I guess they will be okay.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Ajay: :) Please get married/hitched soon and visit me with wife/partner and kid :) I can play with your child (free baby sitting for you)and read to him/her and have so much fun. Mine would be teenagers by then and would not need any reading. Offer open till patience lasts.I reserve right to modify or withdraw the offer at any time.No purchases or proof of age required for offer. Disputes subject to U.K courts only

    Shantharam: Indian Education system sadly is a rat race.But I am talking about younger kids and how they can be influenced when it comes to values.

    Ramesh: Very moving words your daughter's teachers wrote--and so right! I could relate so much.

    athivas: I think if parents just give a lot of time and love, everything else will fall into place, provided the parents themselves believe in basic values.I think this is the first time you are commenting on my blog. Welcome!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Still thinking: Absolutely insensitive lady.

    Only one: It is indeed really pahteic when people make such remarks in front of autistic kids. Working with children itself requires immense patience and working with children who have special needs is a HUMONGOUS task. Kudos to you.
    Parents needing to be screened before having a child? Oh no--I don't agree with you there.Imagine executing such a thing! And who will set standards here? And who decides who is fit and who is unfit to have a child? The state?!Imagine the logistics involved and not to mention red tapism and bureaucracy.It would be horrible!

    Mindspace: parenting is not easy at all. Single parenting even more hard. It's easy to preach and say "spend quality time." It is also not right to sit in judgement. There are times when you feel like tearing your hair out in frustration.Its not roses all the way. That's why there are support groups and hundreds of parenting books. At the end of the day each one needs to figure out what works best for them and their child--don't you think so? End of the day if parents have certain basic value systems in place then all that a child needs is a lot of love.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Great post! words to live by, for new parents or soon-to-be parents

    ReplyDelete
  33. While i agree with the essence of wat ur saying abt adults not knowing how to talk to kids or parents indulging kids and encouraging behavior that shldnt completely be encouraged...(Un)/fortunately..parents are given credit or blamed for a child's mannerisms n behavior..it is kinda rite but at the same time there are so many other influences which parents cant control.

    Most mothers WANT to spend a lot of time wit their children but are not able to...its not out of their own will or choice..u u'stand that rite?

    Also..ya,a child mabbe spoken more respectfully to in the west..but i think @ abt the age of 16-17 indian teenagers are more well-turned-out compared to kids in the west. We can have a longer discussion abt this if u disagree

    n finallie..i think the statement "if u are fortunate enough to have ur own children...." would have unintentionally hurt a few ppl ...they would have felt very very unfortunate for no fault of their own!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Absolutely adore this post...one of the bests one...its so true that childs think so differently...One of my fren who is doing psychology studies told me that its absolutely true that kids listen to you even when they are in ur tummy...they understand what is going around and all this later affects their decision taking power....thats why in earlier days it was told to mom to read good books and talk to baby regularly....

    ReplyDelete
  35. after reading all the comments i am at a loss of what to say. It was really a good post. A good lesson.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Yes, She is physical education teacher. Kids btw 8 to 11 years old

    ReplyDelete
  37. This post has made me think. I love kids, have played with them and had a lot of fun. But I never really thought in the way u have described. It makes sense. I have actually played with kids telling them I ll take their kid sister or brother or them to my place. I really dint think of it this way at that time. The way you have put it makes me feel sorry for what I have done. Thanks for opening an eye.

    ReplyDelete
  38. nice post..thought provoking. I agree with you about how people talk mindlessly to children without realising the effect it would have on them. I have a pesky relative who does that all the time to my kids and I feel sometimes its more due to her own insecurities! but there is one thing I don't agree with you...a destructive child who causes havoc all around him is not the result of an indifferent parent..my 2 year old son falls into that category..he throws things all around tries and roughs up other toddlers..etc.. he is extremely destructive...all the while I keep correcting him sometimes patiently sometimes sternly, sometimes with a smile..nothing seems to work. I spend a lot of quality time with him read to him, show him pictures talk to him.( I am a stay-at-home mom) I have raised my daughter (who just turned 10) the same way as I do my son..but she was always mild, pleasant and well mannered and friendly...I just think children are born with different personalities and you just need to work your way around them.

    ReplyDelete
  39. how truly said... I was a person who never wanted kids of my own coz i always felt that i dint hav the patience for them... Humm now that i am expecting my first baby, i dont know what to say... I certainly do not want my child to become rude and intolerable as i reaaly hate little monsters who i see most of the time and i too blame their parents for not being more strict with them etc... Well parenthood is scary as its a first time and i keep wondering if i am capable and upto it...I do just hope that i will b able to do the right things and make the right choices and make my child a responsibel , joyful human being who has love for fellow humans...

    ReplyDelete
  40. A wonderful thinking post Preethi!!!!

    In Asian countries I've noticed almost 70% of the children are not really given a say in most matters..their choices are treated almost indifferently until ofcourse they start screaming for attention or have started earning[sometimes not even then].
    Luckily the trend is changing & our generation remember the problems we faced with our parents & so are much more careful with our children. But in the meantime there are some who are still conditioned in those old ways.

    That poem is a must read for every parent:-))!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  41. Reflections: Thank you. Yes I do agree that we're much more sensitive than our parents were. I too loved the poem :)

    Enigma: heart Congrats! I am sure you'll make a great mom!

    Namita: By no standards can you be called an 'indifferent' parent. Your comment itself is full of instances where it shows that you do try. What I meant is that there are many parents who make no efforts to contain a rude child.I am sure your son is well brought up and not rude or inconsiderate. Hyperactivity and rudeness are two different things. I do agree completely with you that different children have different personalities and need to be dealt with accordingly.

    Anusha: Sorry if it hurt you :P I just had to speak up.

    Maddy: One of the noblest professions according to me.

    Chirpy paro: When I was pregnant with my son, my husband had to travel for lots of time. It was really painful and very very hard for both of us.Whenever my husband could come home, he would and my son used to respond marvellously to his voice! We were so delighted! My husband would talk to him lots and my son would keep kicking and turning cartwheels and we could feel his movements. It was one of the most amazing experiences I have even had in my life. It is true that babies in the womb can hear.Scientific evidence supports it fully.

    rm: Thanks so much.

    Pavi: You're completely entitled to your opinion and you don't have to agree with everything I say just as I am entitled to mine :)

    Bhavya: thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  42. Nope not hurt. learnt a little something. Thank u for that :)

    ReplyDelete
  43. @PS: i know each one of us are entitled to our own opinions.. Was hoping to have an interesting discussion...:)

    ReplyDelete
  44. Yeah..i agree with you there...RAt race with a 100 pounder on the back.... With young cute and sweet kids its just like as you sow so u reap isnt it?

    ReplyDelete
  45. Shantharam: Yes. Very much so.

    Pavi: :) :)

    Anusha: Glad about that.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Nice post preethi! It needs a lot of patience and understanding to bring up a child. If you are able to get down to their level as a friend and fun loving person, those lively moments will be really enriching and it can recharge your batteries immediately.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Totally, totally agree. I think in general our society does not take kids seriously. "Kids will grow up anyways" is what they feel. You've hit the nail on the head. I feel like circulating your post to everyone (Can I do it?)

    ReplyDelete
  48. I totally agree about time spent...I think we are guilty as a generation of using the TV as a babysitter...

    ReplyDelete
  49. :O) Wonderful post! I love having conversations with children. Getting them to yap away is music to my ears. When I stayed with a friend to work on a project, one of her four-year-old twins would climb a flight of stairs every half hour with a glass of water for me. When I thanked her, I also told her I can't drink so much water. Her firm reply was, "No, you must! Or your 'soo soo' will be yellow." Dunno when last I laughed so much. They assume what ever rules apply to them should apply to others as well, and rightly so.

    As for the retarded people - every one wants to be liked by a child and elicit a response from them, more so when they see another adult capable of doing so. You should PLEASE write about this in Reader's Digest - because many simply do not realize that the child has a brain and a psyche. It's just a cute, live doll to them.

    I once tried to console a crying child (4 yrs) by hitting at a table leg which she tripped on. For some reason that comforted her. Her Dad though wasn't too pleased with me and said, "You should not have done that. It was entirely her fault that she tripped. This is what many Indians teach their children - to hit out at others when the fault is their own." I saw the point immediately and was so embarrassed - but I was only doing what I had seen many others do - and the end justified the means.

    Sorry for this super long reply.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Just read both your recent blogs. Your words about little children, just moved me. Beautiful post. Sometimes I really wonder what these ‘adults’ get out, when they tease the children and make these young children feel sad – a kind of ‘sadism’, shall I say? One more thing, which I have observed in my neighbouring apartment(apart some of them calling me ‘uncle) is the peer pressure. I have seen a mother chastising her young child that he was not getting ‘good marks’ like the other kid ! He is just a kid doing his third standard. And he is a kid who goes to all sorts of ‘classes’ – he attends the evening tuition class after his school and he comes home around 6pm. God alone knows what they ‘tuition’ to a small kid like that. After that he goes to the ‘sloka’ class with his younger sister in tow. And after that they would have to do their school-work. I guess the only games they know are ‘video’ games as the young boy sometimes says proudly that he has ‘won’ this ‘level’ of ‘that’ game. Frankly I have no clue on any of those games. Well, I was fortunate enough in one way, during my school days, as we could not afford such games and there was no TV and most of the time after coming back home from school was to ‘running’ to the ‘ground’ carrying the cricket bat chiseled out of an old door frame by a friendly carpenter. It was a matter of choice playing cricket depending upon the numbers that could be mustered for ‘your set’ and opponent ‘set’. Otherwise, it could be any one of the games like ‘mudugu’ puncher, ‘seven stones’, ‘football’ using the rubber ball used for cricket. After the rains when the ‘ground’ was full with water, we used to play ‘thattai kal’, translated as ‘flat stone’, where a person has to take a flat piece of stone and throw, when the stone would skim along the water surface and the highest number of ‘touches’ achieved will go with his head high like a monarch. We used to also make the ‘thermocol’ ships, which were nothing but some pieces of thermocol taken from the packing moulds and one has to hit that with stones so that it floats to the other end first. We also used to play the ‘tyre race’ during the rainy season using the old bicycle/TVS50 tyres, hitting with a short stick. There was no such pressure or ‘competition’ like I witness when I sometimes watch young children being put on some ‘reality’ TV show and behave like an adult. That is a bit far too much for their young minds. My goodness, you got me visit many years back to my school days. Truly, children and childhood are gifts of God and I cherish mine. I believe most would have hit a nostalgic button, when they read your piece of work, which you are skilled using the simplest choice of words :-)

    ReplyDelete
  51. Lovely post...taught a lot...from now on I will be careful talking to children :) ..I have done some of the 'acts' mentioned in the post...at time it din't appeard to be such a big deal...but I realize it now...

    Thanks :)

    ReplyDelete
  52. omg Preeti - this is one thing that I hate the most. And Indian people who have been living in US for ever still do it. Just last Sunday my 5 year old niece was wearing glittering flip flops when one of her mom's adult friend approached her and said - "your shoes are pretty, can I have them?" complete morons I agree. why can't they stop at "your shoes are pretty".

    Truly enjoyed reading this post - and thanks for the tag - will do it soon :)

    ReplyDelete
  53. You know, I never thought about it like that. Not like I've said stuff like that to kids, but surely, I've been warned!

    Thanks for putting this up! :)

    ReplyDelete
  54. Hi Preeti,
    This is very true, the example which you have quoted "asking for Tpys from small kids" "asking to take their mum"... i have seen this myself... many people do or have played this age old tricks...

    /Anish

    ReplyDelete
  55. hey di,
    its so true.. I remember another saying..
    Kids are like sponge that absorbs all everything that comes thier way..
    Hmm..I need to be careful while dealing with kids..:D
    and I have done a tag from the previous post..

    ReplyDelete
  56. I simply loved this post of yours...So true..Wisdom from the little ones..Fantabulous Post..:)

    ReplyDelete
  57. Wow Preeti..!!
    Gorgeous Post! :)

    ReplyDelete
  58. Lovely post Preeti. I totally agree with you.

    I am a reader of your blog . I love the way you see life.

    leethomas.blog.co.in

    ReplyDelete
  59. "One can say so much about the parents, even if one has not met them by merely interacting with the child."

    I agree... and many a time I catch myself thinking if I'll ever be ready. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  60. lovely post preety and great lessons in there for parents, and parents to be
    LOVE=T.I.M.E so true :)

    ReplyDelete
  61. Ani_aset: Thank you.

    Raaga: Trust me one is never ready..U just have to do it :P :)

    Lee:Thank you so much.

    Shalini:Thank you

    Tabitha:Thank you

    Swathy: Saw that and commented on your latest too :)

    The survivor: Ok :)

    Anish: After reading the comments I think it is because they dont realise.

    Absolutely Normal chaos : :-) I feel like a strict school marm now :)

    Pink Dogwood: After reading comments I think it is because they really no know better. They dont realise it.Will see your tag once you're done.

    ReplyDelete
  62. First time on your blog, its superb!!And the poem is so true and so inspirational...and you are so right this 'Let me take this ' game with the kids is so hurtful!!

    ReplyDelete
  63. Prakhar: :) I don't know what to say--never thought it could have been inadvertent.I always thought people did it to tease kids :P

    Nandagopan:Thank you for the reminiscing.Of all the games yo mention I recall we used to play 'seven stones'. we used to call in 'lagori'. Also we used to throw flat stones and make then jump in water. See Prakhar's comment and my reply above. I guess That explains it.I am with you totally on reality show for kids.But the thing is parents are the ones who push them. And some kids are soooo talented.

    Shades of grey: Su-su was soooo funny :) I smiled too reading it :) Hitting the table--I thought about it..Are children ready to accept blame at that age? Isn't it easier to just say "Bad table" or whatever it was that tripped them?Anyway they will know better when they grow up right?

    Niall: I mostly watch whatever programme they are watching so that i can talk to them about it--they love it--and usually limit it to half an hour a day.

    SS: please do feel free to use email option at the end of the post :) Don't copy paste please!Thank you!

    Fruitu:Yes--i agree. Sometimes they can also drive you up the wall though.

    partywithneha: :D It's ok!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  64. Sara: i just finished replying to all comments and then saw yours.Welcome to my blog :) and thank you for those fabulous commpliments! :)

    ReplyDelete
  65. Amazing blog!!! ;-) Esp. now when I have a 1 year old:)..ur blog is such a stress buster....I wish u take up more blog marathons:) But I understand how hectic it can get for you:)

    ReplyDelete
  66. Hi! I am a bit late in commenting. I really liked this post and I totally agree with you that people do look at children more as a means of amusement in India. Even in school, in the name of discipline, a child is discouraged from creative thinking. Some schools and teachers are however changing, still that is the practice at large. According to some psychologists, our personalities are actually formed at a very young age, and thus children just like adults deserve respect and understanding.

    ReplyDelete
  67. ..and then these children grow up and spread what they learned to the next generation.. isn't it? :)

    ReplyDelete
  68. Hi Preethi,

    I think this is the first time I'm commenting on your blog, though I read it quite often (and enjoy it as much!). This was truly a parent post! I'm not married yet, so havent yet had the joy of experiencing parenthood.

    Let me tell you a story. My uncle and his wife had just one child and decided that one is enough. Everyone around told them that its a bad idea and that the child will grow up into a selfish, spoilt brat. When my little cousin was about 2 years old, I played the same toy trick on her (I was pretty young myself, so I didnt have any psychological strategies in mind). She asked me to wait and went in to her little toy's bunker to get me a better toy and asked me to take it. Everyone was stumped.

    I just wanted to illustrate that playing games with children is alright sometimes (not often and keeping in mind 'moderation' of course). It teaches them truly commendable life skills like 'taking a joke' to 'choose' and sometimes even to assert themselves (no, I'm not going to give the toy to you). As parents I guess, it would be our duty to make sure that though our child experiences the drizzle of life lessons, he/she doesnt get drenched in the rain.

    Just my thoughts!

    ReplyDelete
  69. Shruti: They indeed do.

    Pooja:Thank you! Oh no--no more marathons for a while. Working on second book now.

    Thinker: Yes I agree.Children do desrve respect and understanding.

    Oxymoron: Welcome to my blog and thank you for commenting. It is a myth that single children grow up to be spoilt brats. I know some wonderfully well brought up single children. I appreciate your thoughts--but maybe the child (your cousin) really liked you. And this may sound very smug-but that is just how it is and there is no other way to say it--EVERYTHING changes when you have your own children. It is easy to spout theories when you have not had a child.I remember people who did not have their own kids used to argue with me about spending so much time choosing the right school for my children. They said that our parents did not pay that much attention and we are fine, aren't we.They swore that when they had a child they would just send it to the nearest school.I refused to argue.Now the very same people (they have a child now) are spending so much time, making a huge effort and leaving no stone unturned to make sure that their angel gets into a good school. The point I am trying to make is--unless you're there you really don't know what it is like. It is the classic story of five blind people describing an elephant; Or a person who has never had sex trying to explain what an orgasm is. It is pointless.
    Hope my reply did not offend you.

    ReplyDelete
  70. Ahem!! Just a huge bruise at my ego....hahaha!! I guess I'll just have to wait till I become a mom to see if I get my claws out at 'demented adults' or play refree :))

    ReplyDelete
  71. Oxymoron: Apologies. Really sorry. It was not my intention to bruise anyone's egos. I didn't know how else to say it--and it is one subject I feel so darn strongly about.

    ReplyDelete
  72. Wonderful post, Preeti...
    thought proving and profound indeed... :)

    ReplyDelete
  73. Loved this post....
    Two women I know....one who decided not to have kids as she says she isnt patient enough; and another, who has a beautiful two year old daughter who has been living with the woman's Mom since she was 6 months old. The parents are busy with their careers in another city.
    I have more respect for the first woman as she had the guts to own up and did not bring a human being into the world just to prove she has her organs in order!

    ReplyDelete
  74. Hey Preeti, lovely post. Any parent reading this would hardly have a point of disagreement with what you have written. I specially loved this line - "To a child (and I think this is applicable to most adults too) love is spelt T.I.M.E. ". So, apt. Thanks for such lovely post.

    ReplyDelete
  75. That's amazing!! I loved the poem thanks for sharing!!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate your leaving a comment! Okay--I appreciate your leaving a comment if you have something nice to say ;-)