Published: 18th July 2021
The Coach: Ain’t no room for violence here. What can parents do about this?
Does your kid have violent tendencies and are friends the problem? Here are tips for parents on what to look out for, right from The Coach
The 4th of July weekend shootings that happened in the United States of America really shocked me. The unnecessary and unwanted violence has always been something that I’ve detested throughout my life, the loss of life that’s unwarranted isn’t just barbaric but also shows that we still have a lot to achieve as a society. But I realised that this is something that needs to be nipped in the bud early on. So, I thought it would be wise to write about what parents should do to prevent their children from becoming violent.
My god brother has been my guardian angel since I was 14 years old. He had amazing people management skills and had an entourage of dependable friends. He still has. This made me get not just one, but about ten god brothers. Imagine a 14-year-old surrounded by 25-year-olds all the time.
Here’s what others thought:
I was in bad company as everyone was older than me.
I was doing something wrong as it’s impossible for a kid to be so closely associated with adults.
I would grow up to be a bully or be
But what actually was happening was:
These god brothers protected me from bad company, by giving me the freedom to do whatever I wanted or try anything as long as it was only with them
I was pretty much always too mature for my age. I wanted to keep company with those who would think beyond my physical characteristics or looks.
I was actually being protected by bullies and was being conditioned never to get violent.
Here are the mantras that worked for me:
Perceived bad company may not actually be bad company. Trust your instincts, get to know more about the people your child is hanging out with and see if they’ve had any brushes with the law in the past. Then, take a call.
Every rose also has a thorn. One fatal mistake I see parents make is protecting their children to such a level that the world looks rosy to them. Too much is too bad and that’s when kids, especially in their adolescence, develop a tendency to question authority and get into trouble as they wouldn’t be aware of the consequences of violence or would give in to peer pressure and later pay dearly for their mistakes. Hence, the best thing to do is constantly highlight all the negative aspects of being violent. Like how it’ll lead to revenge.
You love them! Yes, we know. But don’t let that blind you. Another mistake that parents make is by developing a ‘he/she’s only a kid’ attitude. This makes them ignorant of the evident signs like when a child derives pleasure in hurting animals or aimlessly killing lizards and squirrels. If they are particularly violent towards their siblings or even their parents during tantrums, then that’s a classic sign that they prefer violence as the answer.
We’re surrounded by a lot of negativity, some of us are optimists, some of us are pessimists. But today, we all have to work towards becoming realists. Hence, one last tip that I have for parents is to remember that there is more than one way to skin a cat, but if you let the cat know your intentions, it’ll bet all its nine lives to get away from you. So be observant but don’t get too obsessed, you can’t control every outcome. We’ve all learnt some lessons the hard way, guess this is theirs.