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Byron Shire
March 9, 2021

Teach your children well

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In response to M Mizzi (September 26), I will disregard his personal attack on me to get to the issue. Instead of asking why kids don’t listen to their parents, his somewhat sarcastic portrayal of party kids makes mockery of a very sad situation we face in our communities today. He is not willing to accept the fact that parenting support and supervision go a long way to guiding our children through adolescence and into adulthood without reckless behaviour. Love, respect and boundaries, in my view, are essential elements for a sound upbringing. This is what parents are supposed to provide.

Unless you have developed a close parent-to-child relationship with your children from a very early age and have not fallen into the trap of trying to be your children’s ‘best friend’, you don’t stand a chance of supporting them through their teenage years. This means a lot of time, hard work, long and heated negotiations, and giving them priority over everything else, including yourself! Kids will have many good friends in life; they only have one set of parents.

Teenage kids will drink and they will experiment with drugs; very few don’t. If they have been taught to value their lives, look after themselves and respect others, they will always know when to stop. They will sense when the drinking is getting out of hand, when they are at risk of hurting themselves or others. It’s built into their subconscious. I know it from my own personal experience, from seeing my own children grow up through the nineties, and currently with my 16-year-old stepdaughter. There are a lot of kids out there having a great time going out to party at night with friends who rarely get into serious trouble. This did not happen by accident.

Stop blaming kids’ unruly party behaviour on ‘a generational issue’ or corporations, and let’s seriously think more about what we can do to become better parents for our children.

 

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