What’s happened to parenting?

I was shocked to see how the South made national news on 9 November for all the wrong reasons.

Twenty children from Laerskool Suidhewels became terribly ill, complaining of abdominal pains as well nausea and vomiting, after consuming sweets that they had obtained from a stranger the previous day.

I don’t blame the children for this. I blame the parents of these children. What has happened to parenting today?

When we were growing up we [were taught] to never speak to strangers and to never ever accept anything from them, no matter how enticing it was that was being offered. This is basic parenting! Clearly, these children have not been taught this very basic, yet essential lesson.

Today parents rather use electronic babysitters such as televisions, smartphones and iPads instead of interacting directly with their children.

Today’s parents don’t understand the importance of play for children and the fact that personal interaction between parent and their children is what makes them intelligent, empathetic, sympathetic and emotionally mature people.

Had the parents of these children had a culture of personal interaction, then regular discussions on various subjects of relevance to the children would be discussed. Clearly, this is not the norm for these unfortunate children.

Shame on the parents of these children!

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