Parents are those people with the special job of nurturing us and bringing us up in the right way. They provide food, shelter, clothing, education and other essentials. They do their best to make sure we don’t lack the vitals. When we are born, there’s no instructional manual attached to our bodies from heaven that would show our parents how to raise us up. So all the parents have to do is try; and learn through their mistakes.

Especially with the firstborns, very often parents would seem to be in a daze regarding milestones in their child’s life like the child’s first birthday, his graduation from primary school and entry into secondary school, his teenage years (puberty, issues with the opposite sex and all that), his final exams and subsequent graduation from both secondary school and the university, and so on. This is because they would be experiencing those important events for the first time and they can only go with their gut instincts (so to speak). They take decisions based on what they feel and think is right and when they do make mistakes, some take a different approach with the next child.

Now the issue of discipline is a serious one in family life; rarely overlooked. And when it comes down to it some parents are too lenient with their kids, giving them too much freedom, while some are unreasonably too strict. Yet other parents try to find a balance, knowing that they have to dangle a carrot sometimes, and at other times wield a big stick. The funny thing is that some parents who are too lenient assume that by befriending their kids, they (the kids) would always go to them when they need advice, and would never ‘let them down’ (so to speak). But there is a reason why they are called ‘parents’, right? This group of parents often find it hard to discipline their kids because their kids rarely take them seriously in those situations.

At the other end of the spectrum are parents who are too strict  and who sometimes end up pushing their kids away from them. These kids seek answers outside and they are usually more comfortable talking to adults other than their parents. These are the kids that are always eager to try out stuff with friends, and any little chance they get to be away from the home and their parents, they often tend to overdo things. We have heard stories of kids who are always locked in the house by their parents and when they finally get the chance to go out, they are sometimes unable to control themselves, becoming ‘drunk’ with their latest freedom, even though temporary and return home with the bitter evidence of their escapades, like a pregnancy, stolen stuff or even an arrest.

It is really sad to know that parents still ‘cage’ their kids. Some might argue that societal behaviours today call for even tighter nooses to be ‘deployed’ on today’s kids. Well, we used to have these neigbours; strong Christians, who still do it to their kids. It became news recently that their youngest daughter, about 15 or 16 years of age, left home to be with her boyfriend. It’s been more than a month already and she hasn’t returned home. Anyone around that heard the story mostly had a reaction of, “Good for the parents”. Even though it is never right to encourage that kind of behavior from children, it is hard to deny the fact that such parents sometimes ‘deserve’ things like that.  When I heard the story of the teenager running away from home to meet ‘man’ ,

I immediately told my parents, ‘thank you’ for not bringing me up in a cage. My dad was and still is the stricter of my parents, and he made good (and I mean, really GOOD) use of the ‘tools’ then: his hands, the belt and the cane’, you name it; but certainly not to the point of not letting me go out when it was necessary. In fact, my dad would always say, “Go out, meet people, and see places”. He knew the importance of socialisation to the mental (and otherwise) development of anyone, especially a young adult.

Seriously though, it is disturbing to note that over-strict parents continuously look the other way and fail to realize that ‘caging’ their kids does more harm than good. They always think that by doing so, their children would never be influenced by bad friends and as a result, could never be bring shame to the family. Sadly, many have learned the hard way that it doesn’t always work that way. I am not advocating for children to be given 100% freedom, but as with most things in life, there has to be a balance. It is in that way that one can truly get the best of both worlds.


Credits: 8tracks.com



  1. i was about to say it isnt entirely nice ro free dem 100% till i saw ur last statement on freedom…Nice piece…Thanks for sharing :*

  2. In America, parents allow their children to go out to meet with new people. I know of a family in Clayton in New York, USA; they have kids of “5Years” and “3Years” with their last born who is just a year old if i am not wrong. The kids would ask the parents to them out so that they can see places, the parents are devoted Christians, every week is either they go to their friend’s house (Not excluding one of the parents) or their friends come over to theirs. Meanwhile the parents guides them in everything they do and there would always be a time for talking about the stories in the Bible, in respect to training them in the way of the Lord.

    I don’t want to be judgmental or whatsoever, we cannot really blame those Parents that doesn’t allow their children to go out. Some of them are just AFRAID; while the others are just SELFISH or WICKED but some do that for PROTECTION.

    1. Fear of the society at large makes some parents not to engage their children with others not even the neighbours.

    2. Selfish because they want their children to be outstanding in everything they do, and not wanting to share with others, they know if their children have friends, they would likely want to ask them for help, and some of these parents are always after making MONEY, so they have no time for the children, so they decided to lock them up.

    3. Wickedness, in terms of what the parents or the parent had done in his or her young age. They might have done some wicked things, which they were told that their children would ripe what they did. So now they are afraid to let their children to hang out with other kids so that what they did in the past would not happen to their children.

    4. Wow, Protection, yes protection, some of the parents out there, works 15-17hours a day, and for them to say their children to go out there whilst they are not at home might be risky due to the nature of their jobs. Maybe the father is a lawyer and the mother is Banker. Jobs like these makes the parents to lock their children up indoors. Such decisions are made depending on the environment. Some of them, they would go to school in the morning in their Parent’s car or jeep, after school the school BUS would drop them at the door-step.

    There are lots of reasons why some parents are like this. But this is just my honest contribution.


    Friday Demola
    Twitter: @Snowall_Dempo
    Email: Demolaboy@Gmail.com

    1. Hahaha I like what you said about the ‘wickedness’ part. So such parents are afraid that their sins may be visited on their kids.Interesting.

  3. As children, we notice those tiny details we disliked in our parents’ parenting style, and usually end up promising ourselves not to do same with our own kids. Its either they were too strict, or they were too complacent, or they just didn’t do certain things you noticed other parents do with/for their kids. My point is, most times there is a direct correlation btw one’s parenting style and how one was brought up. A person that grew up feeling caged, will probably want his child to have a sense of freedom. Same thing with a person that had a lot of freedom growing up, such would want his/her child to have same, if not more.
    Education, enlightenment, environment, religious belief, culture e.t.c are all factors that influence parenting styles too. Certain cultures and religions demand that children be brought up in a particular manner. Caged, free, good or bad, are all moral parameters with unequal balances across borders. But one thing i know for sure, is that, when we become adults, we get to appreciate our parents and understand why they adopted whatever parenting style they used. In the end, it was their own way of shield us from the harsh truths of this sublunary existence.

    1. You are on point about the factors influencing parenting styles and we can only be grateful to our parents because they did the best they could with what they had financially and otherwise.

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