Children, Don’t Accept Indulgence

Creating a family reading hour can be helpful towards a healthy development of the child (Merholz, 2004)

By J. B. Fagoyinbo

One young man of about 26 worked with me on a project. He was a very intelligent electrical/electronic engineer. He was from a middle-class family. I was shocked he couldn’t drive a car. “I determined I wouldn’t use anybody’s car to learn how to drive; not even my father’s,” he told me.

Most parents indulge their children nowadays. Have a look at some items in the list.

  1. House helps must do all domestic chores- sweeping, dish washing, dusting, cooking, laundry, etc.
  2. Children must not be scolded for wrongdoing in schools and even in Sunday Schools;
  3. Parents arrange mercenaries to write qualifying examinations for their children;
  4. Fat allowances, possibly much higher than the teachers’ salaries, are given to children for comfort;
  5. Parents buy off lecturers and instructors so that their wards wouldn’t have to repeat classes;
  6. Gifts of expensive phones with games and play stations as against learning essentials like desktops equipped with study programs;
  7. Underage children being allowed to drive cars;
  8. Underage children being registered to vote simply because they’ve been given out in child marriage.

One of the first set of students that I supervised never took part in the execution of their project: field trips, data collection and analysis. They were to submit individual project reports. I refused to grade his submission. His parents came and offered gifts which were turned down. They resulted to threats but also failed. They tried to get to me through my wife who refused to yield to them. They tried to find out if I had a secret lover but found none. The young man had to carry out his own individual field work which he was able to complete and eventually met up with the Resit Examination. But for the fact that he fell into the Resit Examination category he would’ve had the most outstanding project report for that year: his talent was made latent through indulgence.

Parental indulgence ruins a child’s life. The Holy Bible specifically instructs that “He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes”He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes” (Prov 13:24) because  “The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame” (Prov 29:15). The shame is not only to the mother but the entire family and possibly the community.

My boss used to indulge his children so much that once they came back from school they took over the two visitors’ chairs; they usually retreated to his office, their mother rarely being around. Any transaction we had to do would be discussed with him standing. I decided one of those fateful days that it would end and took a report to him at about 3.00pm when I knew that the boys had come. I took the older son by the arm, pulled him up and took over the chair. My boss’ eyes went blood red. Before he could say anything, I told him “Sir, the country has so done it that no matter how highly placed you are these children will have to serve the nation. Suppose in their service years one of them happens to serve where I have authority would you like me to treat him as an over-indulged child or as the son of my former boss?” I instantly noticed calmness in him and from that day he made them refer to me as their uncle. The two of them are now highly placed in the society.

Children, your parents who are indulging you now were never indulged by their own parents. Ask him if he dared let his father know that he was flogged in school by his teacher

About jbfagga 42 Articles
Engr Joseph Babatunde Fagoyinbo was born on January 16, 1947. He enlisted for engineering education and obtained the BSc degree in Agricultural Engineering in 1977 and an M.Eng degree in Environmental Engineering in 1982. He attended an 8-week training programme at the Fondation de l’Eau, Limoges France in July/August 1998 as the leader of a Nigerian delegation. In 2000 he also attended the UNESCO-sponsored Higher Hydrologicy Course at the Moscow State University in July/August 2000 Engr Fagoyinbo has since 1977 been having practsing in the field of engineering including design and construction supervision of water supply, river channel training works and environmental management facilities, industrial development, entrepreneurship, etc.

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