Parenting is a very delicate job and I have never been thrown therein before, so I will be talking majorly from the perspective of the children.
I humbly plead that parents are open-minded while reading this and that they read to the end. This is not in anyway to attack or belittle your loving efforts over us, but to point out some things they may not have realized. Please, be patient as this is a long read:
The truth is a lot of children in Nigeria, will at a point, have a tough time with their parents. The beginning of this cause is children not being able to express themselves so the parent-children relationship is majorly or solely governed by the ideas, assumption, opinions, conclusions and actions of their parents but parents can make mistakes too; it’s like they forget that. It gets to a point in children’s lives where I believe parents will need their input in order to parent them effectively. This point may even be before the teenage age. Children should not always be shunned or disciplined. Chai, the way this parent-children relationship has become a war-like thing is heartbreaking.
For christian parents especially, parents are living by this bible quote of “train up your children in the way you should go, and when he is old, he will not depart.” This is very good and important, I don’t disagree but because they may not want to receive query for failing in this on judgement day, they do it anyhow and anyway forgetting that not all ways will work sadly. The bible never said FORCE your children in the way of the Lord or use the way of the Lord to oppress them or impose the way of the Lord on them. I wish our dear parents will realize that the method of force may do more harm than good when it gets to a certain stage. FIGHTING your children for not serving God is not the best and I really understand how painful it might be when they don’t go in the way of the Lord but sometimes, the approach used may contribute to their obedience or rebellion. Parents are sadly so carried away sometimes that they forget to tackle this matter spiritually. The bible says “we wrestle not against flesh and blood…” therefore using only yells and force alone to tackle a child that is dealing with a certain sin may not yield desired results. It is of importance to note that forces beyond a child may be controlling the child to make him/her struggle with a particular sin; it is important that parents realise that they should be warring against the evil spirit that is making their children bound to sin in the place of prayer rather than always fighting the child.
Prayer. More prayer. More and more prayer. And God will answer in Jesus’ name.
Parents feel they are asking their children to serve God, not commit sin, they believe it is justified that they use all means(both good and not very advisable) to make them obey tipatipa. I’d rather our parents focus on genuine intentions from their children, not just actions alone so that hypocrisy is far from them.
Another problem is that they have injured their relationship with their children and so when they start forcing or compelling them to serve God, they be like “from where to where. Who does he/she thinks he/she is?…” The truth is, some christian parents, yes, CHRISTIAN parents, have injured their children so bad that the children have contemplated suicide; the parents have insulted and cursed them out of anger, given them low self esteem, exposed them to avoidable sexual abuse(although unintentional sometimes) and even discouraged them from serving God when their faith was young. No, they didn’t mean to and yes, they did it out of anger plainly, but they didn’t go back to apologize and therefore have injured that relationship. It may be quite difficult for any child to want to listen after all that trauma they have been put through. These are part of the reasons why we don’t call home when we are in school unless we need money: it was because during the holiday, our parents made us feel like they regretted birthing us. People say things like ‘When I was younger, I thought my mum/dad was not my mum/dad’. Yes, we joke about these things but there are extreme cases where parents hurt their children physically, emotionally and psychologically so bad that these children begin to doubt that they were the seeds of their parents. It’s exhausting to think about.
Again, sometimes, children have genuine questions/curiosity/confusions about the faith (eg. Does God exist? Is the bible real?) but our parents don’t know and this may be because they have injured the relationship so children are not encouraged to ask and when they can predict your reaction to an explosive one rather than educative one, you leave them to the danger of atheists on google answering your children’s questions on the faith💔. And then they are being forced to come and stay in the faith, stay in what they are looking for answers to? We need our parents to help us with these answers. Parents might not have all answers and that’s okay, but they can share the little they know from their years in the Lord; they can also pray along with us in times of confusion. We would love and appreciate it so much.
Furthermore, our parents discourage us. Some parents have well-behaved children yet nag them for not-very-important things constantly and criticize them harshly over and over. Parents, please, it is not good o. Please, desist treating your children like they have no feelings. Let them feel acknowledged and appreciated. That habit of going to joyfully proclaim to your friends about how your children are well-behaved, yet you criticise this children harshly in their presence and make them feel their efforts of being well-behaved is going down the drain is really unfair and discouraging. Please, appreciate us to their faces. It should be a relationship of love, not bitterness.
Finally, parents who tend to other people’s vineyards(children) more than theirs, hmm, it is well. They have their children looking for their love and attention but have it been poured on other people’s children and even also criticising, condemning and judging the children of others while their own children can’t simply get even a small percentage of your time and love, please, that’s not good enough. It’s good to train and care for other people’s children but please, let not your own children lack the love you are dishing outside.
So, it’s a wrap. Although, I was hesitant to post this and it had to go through editing upon editing because I didn’t want to be rude in any way while putting out the truth at the same time, I hope we have all learnt one or more things from here. Again, it is not the intention to belittle the efforts of our parents or call them out or disrespect them, but to help them see the problem and then work on the solutions so there is a better relationship and better results to God’s glory. It is my wish that parents see ‘Train up a child in the way he should go’ as more spiritual than physical; where they rely on God to help them in training us rather than on their own physical abilities that very much turns into frustration, shouting and force when we are not obeying. We the children apologize for our wrongs too and we seek a relationship that works as well.
I think these few points have proved that the reason why you may have a poor parent-child relationship may be YOU(my sincere apologies); not society, their friends, school, social media, etc but may be YOU.
Very importantly, I pray that we the children that know better will do better when we have our own children.
And also, because I know not all parents may meet up/agree with this post, I will encourage the children who are reading this to be strong willed. Your relationship with God has you as the basic factor. Regardless of how it looks like your parents/church/society has failed you, please be rugged and keep it. Continue in Him and keep telling Him all your challenges and problems. May God increase your strength. Don’t because of challenges become a bad shide o😊
I pray the Lord will help us all and teach our parents by Himself. We love you!
Thank you for coming; don’t forget to share.
Please, don’t forget to find me on instagram, facebook and youtube. Thank you.