Thursday, August 20, 2015

Be Careful, You Never Know Who Is Watching

Image result for parental guidance Ben Stiller's meet the fockers is hilarious for many reasons , I can't remember many things from the movie but I remember the the scene where the baby's first word is a swear word. I found it really funny as a young adult, but as a parent, not so much.
My dad told me a story of a child that killed his younger brother with their father’s gun mimicking a scene from a movie they saw together. That act tore their family apart and later led to the divorce of the parents. This shows that the consequence of our negligence as adults to be more vigilant in controlling the things our children watch or listen to, can be far greater than we have ever imagined.  We forget that the world has evolved a lot since we were kids.

Kids are so much more exposed to tons of good and bad stuffs these days and this has a lot to do with the advancement in technology. They get introduced to different cultures and materials just by turning on the TV or surfing the internet. This is as much a blessing as it is a curse.  Many things that now seem to be part of our everyday life didn't used to be.
 Before the advent of multiple television stations, satellite television services and affordable internet, there were the government owned TV stations. The ones we had to painfully and patiently wait for to start their daily program by 4pm.  It used to be such a relief to see the rainbow themed wallpaper and hear the National Anthem get played, because it signaled the beginning of the day’s broadcast. Most of the programs were educative and pretty much decent. Parents didn’t really have to bother about switching channels or putting codes on certain ones. The television stations operated based on some type of moral standard that worked for everyone involved. We can’t say the same about the TV programs we have these days. There is so much sexual and violent content being shown.

A video of an eighteen month old child twerking was circulated on the internet recently. The video was recorded by the child’s mum and adults could be heard cheering in the background. While this might not be a surprise seeing as many lines have been crossed in recent times, it is still worrisome to see just how much kids are influenced by what they see and hear. The other day a four year old was trying to explain to me the difference between love and like. She said ‘ I like boys and I love girls’. I could deduce she already thinks one can only use the word love in relation to a boy that one has a sexual relationship with. I stumbled on a 2 year old child, while waiting in a hotel reception, watching porn on his uncle’s iPad.

We seem to have forgotten that our role as adults and parents require for us to be more vigilant than back in the days. We owe these kids a preservation of their innocence.
To achieve this, we need to take conscious steps:-
·         Put parental codes on your cable TVs.
·         Put bars on other gadgets such as iPads,laptops and so on. This is to ensure that they don’t stumble on harmful materials and people.
·         IF you need to watch a program that promotes sex,violence or strong language, you can postpone it till some other time when the child is tucked away or get another television  in another room,  programmed strictly for children’s programs ,for the kids.
·         Make yourself accessible so that your children can be free to ask you any type of question. This will give you an insight into whether they have been around the right or wrong influence.

Remember, God is the best minder but that doesn’t mean we should slack on our responsibilities. Be careful what you watch, do or listen to around the younger ones.
God bless.


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