Your Children Deserve Parental Love

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[London Bridge Is Falling]

We live in a selfish society where parents place the pursuit of their happiness above the happiness, security, stability and general wellbeing of their children. 

It is too often that relationships, involving children are easily broken without a fight because responsibilities become too great a burden to bear. For instance, why would I work to put food on the table when I could be drinking champagne in a club? 

How can I take the children to play in the park if I am sleeping all day because I was dancing all night? Why should I fight for this love when there are plenty fish in the sea?  Why work if I can get it for free?

This train of thought and blasé attitude has led to a change in the traditional family structure over time, from the nucleus and extended family structures to more and more single parent families, in particular single mother families with young children. It is very difficult and very painful trying to explain family breakdown to a young child and why suddenly they are left with one parent. Children simply cannot grasp the concept that a mom lives here and daddy lives there, and they, the children are carted off here and there. It is confusing, it is heartbreaking and not in the best interest of the children.

Statistics show that marriage is a vanishing institution, especially in the Black community, taken over by out of wedlock childbearing and unfortunately abandonment which increases child poverty. Statistics also show that children raised in single family homes do less well at school, are more likely to get into trouble with the law and do not grow up to be productive, contributing members of society.

Most story books and movies that our children grow up with portray two parent families which leave these children feeling different. My children’s story book, "Mother Duck", deliberately dealt with a single mother family and my forthcoming story book, "Daddy Land", portrays a single father family.

Story books and films that only portray two parent families cause hurt, confusion and fear to children growing up in single parent families. They begin to feel as if something is wrong with them; that perhaps it is their fault that mom and daddy no longer love each other and could they --the parents-- stop loving them, the children, too. These questions can be addressed by exposing children to the many different emerging family structures in our societies.

All too often, as parents we lose sight of the consequences of our easy decisions.  We get wrapped up in our own pain and need that we forget the ensuing damage to our children. They grow up to be unhappy, angry adults and probably unable to form loving, trusting, and long lasting relationships; hence the cycle of abandonment is perpetuated. For the parent watching a suffering child, the experience is very traumatic and can have far reaching and long lasting effects.

Have you ever heard a little voice cry out for daddy, for mom in the dead of the night? Have you ever heard a little voice whimper like a wounded puppy, staggering from room to room in search of daddy, in search of mom? Have you ever seen the fear in their eyes and felt the bear hug that says, "don’t you leave me too"?

Parenthood is for life.

There are those relationships that breakdown irretrievably, where there has been abuse, mistreatment and broken trust. Staying in such a relationship, trying to force together jigsaw puzzles will have a negative effect on both parents and children. But where there is a chance that a relationship can be saved, even if it is just for the sake of these young children, then fight like hell because children want their parents to stay together.

So what is the solution?

Relationships are hard and they need to be worked at, especially when there are children involved and as parents and lovers we need guidance from our faith and religious beliefs. A religious couple are less likely to walk out on their union and children on a whim because they live by a moral code.  In times of trouble they will pray and seek counsel from their religious leaders.

We need guidance from our parents, aunties and uncles who have weathered the storm and kept their families together. Be old skool, without losing your dignity, don’t let pride ruin the lives of your children. Let your heart build them a home. A loving, nurturing, safe and secure home.

Allimadi writes for The Black Star News from London

"Speaking Truth To Empower."

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