Parenting isn't for the faint of heart; it requires sacrifice, compromise and the occasional act of tough love, amongst many other responsibilities.

Our readers had a lot to share in response to
Lili Radloff's latest newsletter on parenting:

Hi,

The best advice I received was from my late dad. I am a mother of 4. Both my husband and I are teachers. There is the adage that goes around that we are busy educating and disciplining other people’s children that we forget to do the same for our kids.

Much like a mechanic whose car is beat-up, crackles and spurts.

My dad taught that me that as parents we always want to give our children everything we didn’t have growing up, like all the creature comforts, the latest techno gadgets, all the status symbols to keep our children happy, so that we feel satisfied that our children have everything they want, and to bubble them in a cocoon that they are entitled.

As parents we feel superior when our child is wearing Gucci on her head, Hermes around the neck, a Versace off-the-runway look, finished off with a Louis Vuttion bag, and a pair of Jimmy Choo’s.

Behind our superior look is utter despair that we have to work very hard to pay for all of this. Remember that we are teachers, contrary to the Unions always fighting for an increase in salary, we do not earn well.

My dad taught me early on that by doing everything for the children, we do not create an appreciative culture, rather a ‘you owe me’ one.

So my dad’s final advice was we are so bent on giving our children everything we did not have growing up, that we forget to give them what we did have.

The sense of family, a day at the beach eating home-made sandwiches, a train ride, sitting together and having supper, spending time with the family, settling in with a book, playing board games, and typically Indian, a brown paper bag of sweets and savouries on a Friday, learning values form the elders, talking and listening to each other.

Grace

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