I have all sorts of hypothetical and realistic discussions with my husband and there’s one topic that has the highest density: Children’s upbringing.
Belonging to a Gen Y population ( more commonly known as a Millenial) we’ve seen the passing of not one but two generations. We’ve also lived through the technological era and the time before, so it’s only common for us to consider how we choose to raise a kid in this world of abundant knowledge and exposure that is as easily harmful as it is beneficial.
Our discussions range from extensive outdoor sports and no technology til 10 years to healthy eating habits and informative ways to learn about bodily needs, from trips to scientific centres/museums to visits to amusement parks and beaches savouring nature, from bonding with family and friends to learning languages and arts. It’s only normal for a parent to want to teach their kid the most in their capacity, to be able to nourish the mental as well as the physical part of him/her. But there’s one thing to take note here. We’re lucky to have enough education, exposure, understanding and resources in this world to demand better for our kids and hence instead of making them just a better version of ourselves, we should help them be their best possible selves.
Humans aren’t born with prejudice but we teach them to favour, to perceive. Parents teach their kids words, colours, shapes, beliefs, and it is parents who also teach their kids judgement, discrimination, racism, insensitivity. Kids pick up on not just what we show them but what we say, our movement and even how we feel around certain objects and people. It’s very crucial to monitor and try to neutralize all of what we are and feel and do around our kid. It’s not an easy thing, for sure, but those few months make a human that would go on living for years, decades on this planet, so let’s tread carefully.
With multiple laws against harassment, discrimination and development in human rights, in general, has led to a more consciously aware society but I’ve seen the world today make fun of how people have gone intolerant and take offence to the tiniest bits of jokes, it wouldn’t be such if the world truly was all-inclusive.
I know that the world sees me differently because I’m a girl. I know the world hears me differently because I’m fat. I know that the world perceives me differently because I prefer words over videos or because I truly dread phone calls. I’ve always felt out of place because my personality was different than those who surrounded me. Where many enjoyed sitting idol on the ground staring at no one and nothing, in particular, I preferred visiting the library and took pleasure in doing homework of whoever asked. I was yelled at for never leaving my book behind as I had to carry one ( course or fiction) EVERYWHERE I went. My closest friend doesn’t understand my anxiety or most of my personality for that matter to date – despite explaining myself time and again – and hence I’ve only tired myself of such worldly explanations that would never help because I’ve finally understood that the world is simply not ready yet, we, the Gen Y are judgemental and unaccepting but that’s not the world I see for my kids.
All my arguments and desires end here, whatever or whoever my child be, I NEED her/him to be All-inclusive. Welcoming to the world around us, in all ways and forms. Accepting each living and breathing human, respecting each form and type. Not ever, even for a second, categorizing humans based on their traits, physical or mental but understanding who they are, whatever and however that may be.
I wish a generation who isn’t as shallow as we are.