ARE WE CONNECTED WITH OUR KIDS?
Many of us have been shocked with the discovery that our kids and us are too far apart, even though we may pretend it otherwise. I have seen too many parents cry it out loud, “I did not know this was going to happen.”
One of my friends sent his kid to the best of schools in Dallas and always talked about the money he was spending on him - as if the son was a stock market. He ran away and never wanted to see the parents again. I feel the pain of the father, but I also feel the misery his son is enduring. There was no connection between the kids and his parents – everything was money to them.
A few years ago, one of the kids was shot in an accidental fire between rival gangs, the parents were on TV, and it was embarrassing to watch them talk– they were talking about money again! They have done everything for him and listing the monies they have spent on his BMW, Rolex Watches, Armani Suits… and he does this! Man it looks like their stock market crashed and not their son.
If we are connected well, not perfectly, but relatively well. Meaning we cease to become parents in the sense of advisers – but become good friends in terms of listening to them, then they will share all about them, if we can hold ourselves and listen to them without interrupting. Imagine this; you are excited or hurt about something, and you want your spouse, friend or kids or any human with two years to listen to you, instead if you get advice and interruption, you disconnect with them.
All it takes is UN-interrupted listening. My life is not perfect either, but my kids talk with me comfortably. My daughter tests me with shocking revelations, it puts my patience on test, but listening to her is part of the affection and caring. She knows it was difficult and when she sees that I value what she had to say and patiently listen, she would realize that and acknowledge it, then I would say, yes, it was difficult and was very tempting to interrupt, but listening to you was far more important than interrupting you. This bonds us.
True friendship with your kids is when you listen to them so intently that they will share everything, it gives them relief, removes the barriers and a strong bond of trust is created. Then neither of you will lose the other.
It’s not too late for any one. You can always begin afresh! Be a cheer leaders to your kids when they turn 18.
HERE IS AN ESSAY FROM A CHILD
A teacher from Primary School asks her students to write an essay about
What they would like God to do for them...
At the end of the day while marking the essays, she read one that made her very emotional. Her husband, that had just walked in saw her crying and asked her - What happened?
She answered - Read this. It's one of my student’s essays.
Oh God, tonight I ask you something very special: Make me into a television. I want to take its place. Live like the TV in my house. Have my own special place, and have my family around ME. To be taken seriously when I talk.... I want to be the center of attention and be heard without interruptions or questions. I want to receive the same
Special care that the TV receives when it is not working. Have the company of my dad when he arrives home from work, even when he is tired.
And I want my mom to want me when she is sad and upset, instead of ignoring me... And... I want my brothers to fight to be with me... I want to feel that family just leaves everything aside, every now and then, just to spend some time with me. And last but not least make it that I can make them all happy and entertain them...
Lord I don't ask you for much... I just want to live like every TV
At that moment the husband said:
- 'My God, poor kid. What horrible parents!
She looked up at him and said:
- 'That essay is our son's!!!
....... Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam, Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building a Cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at www.TheGhousediary.com. He believes in Standing up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly at Huffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.