We had arrived in Toronto in 2004 and we were still adapting to the culture shock around us. One day we were attending a birthday party and the one common theme was educating new immigrants and everyone had an opinion. One of the parents explained to us that children leave their homes once they finish high school, as they are quite liberated. More so, we should allow them to do whatever they want, as this is a free society. I listened to them patiently and waited for my turn. They continued to explain that children need their space and freedom to explore the world and so, we should not follow the Indian culture and tie them down in our homes.
After listening to them, I wanted to be sure what I heard was accurate. So, I inquired, “Are you saying that parents should not participate in children’s lives and allow them to lead their lives independently?”
They said, “Exactly, you’ve got it!”
I asked them if they had a backyard with plants and vegetables.
They replied, “Yes.”
I asked them, “Do you just sow the seeds or plants and do nothing for the entire season?”
They replied firmly, “Are you mad? The plants need trimming, water and some love and care.”
So, I asked them, “Then, why would you treat your children differently? They definitely need their independence and space to grow and learn to live in their own imagination but not helping them to do better in life makes no sense.”
Fast forward to the 2008 recession and now we found that children are back with their families, as cost of living was high and the theory of independence and freedom was out of the door.
My wife and I discussed the incident last week that occurred 14 years ago and we were happy with our thought process. In essence, don’t let anyone influence your decision, especially while raising your children. Listen to others, learn from their mistakes and make an informed and wise choice but never emulate others, as every human is unique in their own image. Similar to plants, a child also needs constant love and nurturing and do what is important and realistic for your child’s growth and development.
Please share with your families and friends