Hey folks, do you know what’s worse than barrenness? Raising unbalanced children! I mean, let’s face it, we all want our kids to be successful, but are we truly considering what success means for them and how we can help them achieve it in a healthy manner?
Parenting in Africa has evolved over the years, but one thing that remains constant is the need for a balanced approach. We have seen firsthand the effects of extreme parenting styles – helicopter parenting stifles growth and independence, while permissive parenting causes children to lack boundaries and discipline.
So how can we strike a balance?
Here are a few tips:
—Encourage independence while being present:
Let’s give our children the space to make decisions and learn from their mistakes, while still being there for guidance and support. You might not really want to believe this, but doing the above would make them better decision-makers now and in future.
—Establish clear boundaries:
Children need structure and boundaries to feel safe and secure. However, overly strict rules and harsh punishments can cause resentment and rebellion. By doing this, they will eventually learn to act appropriately and make sound decisions even in your absence
—Prioritise education and personal development:
As Africans, we place a high value on education, but let’s not forget about our children’s emotional and mental well-being. Encourage hobbies and interests that allow them to express themselves and cultivate their talents. In one way or another, doing this helps them to recognise possibilities in whatever life path they may find themselves on.
—Be mindful of cultural and societal expectations:
We live in societies where certain behaviours and norms are expected of us. However, it’s important to challenge harmful traditions and beliefs that do not promote the holistic development of our children. In one way or another, doing this also helps them to recognise possibilities in whatever life path they may find themselves on.
—Lead by example:
Children are like sponges – they soak up everything around them. Let’s model the behaviours and values we want them to exhibit.
In conclusion, raising balanced children in Africa is not an easy feat, but it’s essential for their growth and success. Let’s strive to strike a balance between support and independence, structure and flexibility, and tradition and progress.