I’m proud to have two grown up children (25 and 28) who manage their own lives. Even though, I’m proud of having raised two very healthy and good minded people in their own rights, I do feel that I have failed them somewhere along the road. I suppose I would have looked at my parenthood as being rather strict. I always used to say to my kids, “I can’t let you dance on our table, if you can’t dance on anyone else’s”. Meaning, that there has to be a certain limit to our behaviour. Once our behaviour interferes with the comfort and freedom of others around us, it is time to reflect and ask, is our behaviour acceptable. I might have been a little bit strict here or there and sometimes wonder whether I would have been better off, leaving my kids to their own devices and let them get on with it.
On the other hand, when I watched and still watch some other parents who really do leave their kids to their own devices I wish that the parents would just put their foot down and get their kids to calm down and respect others around them. The other day, I was sitting in a spacious 4**** hotel lobby. I had a hard day’s work behind me. I was drinking a pint and wanted to relax a little bit. The next thing a mother and her three kids turned up. They turned the whole place upside down. They just turned the lobby into a huge playground. They were jumping across the sofas, crawling beneath the coffee tables and screaming from the top of their voices. The mother kept hushing them, but you could tell, that she didn’t really mean it. She hushed them, because she knew that that was what was expected of her and not because she wanted the kids to “behave”.
I mean, I did not expect the kids to sit in a corner and not say a word. I do not believe in the old saying, that kids should be seen and not heard. But I also believe that it is the duty of the guardian to teach the children, what behaviour is acceptable and what not. The reason I was sitting in the lobby to in the first place, was because the bar was too noisy for me. I just needed a little bit space to chill out. There was no point in me taking my drink up to my room, as I was meeting clients within 20 minutes. At the end, I had to move into the bar, because I was afraid that the children were going to knock over my drink. Once I settled in the bar, I saw the mother with another mother and three more kids coming into the bar. The six children commenced to turn the bar and lobby into a mega playground and the mothers kept pointing at their great kids, full of adoration.