Archive for Growing Up

Why Are Britain’s Children Unhappy?

Posted in Britain, Child Discipline, Children, Primary Schools, UK, USA with tags , , , , , , on 15/01/2012 by floroy1942

I was quite amazed to read the other day that half a million children in the UK are unhappy. But then I sat for a while and thought about it, and my conclusion was that I am surprised the number is so low!!

An Unhappy Child - But Why?

Many will ask what the current generation have to complain about, and then compare the material things children have these days with what they had when they were growing up. Considering that we live in a hugely materialistic world these days, where owning an iPad, iPod, 46in. colour TV or computer is supposed to make one happy, it will come as a shock to most that this is not what makes for happy children. According to a report from The Children’s Society, who interviewed 30,000 children between the ages of eight and sixteen, it is a loving atmosphere at home that ranks the highest with our children.

It is often said by ‘people-in-the-know’ that the most important thing is a two-parent family to ensure a childs happiness. Well, the report proves them wrong. When you think about it, as a child where would you rather grow up, in a home where mum and dad are always arguing, or with just a mum (or dad) who loves you to bits?  I think the answer would be the same for everyone.

Mother and Child At Play

I personally do not like the idea of a one-parent family because I feel there should be balance in a child’s early life, and balance comes from receiving guidance from a mother and a father. Secondly, I have always felt that after childbirth, a woman’s place is in the home for at least the first five to six years of a child’s life, not out working. I know, I can hear the indignant snorts and guffaws from here as you think to yourself, we can’t afford it! The wife has to work or we can’t afford our holiday in Spain. I can only say, for the sake of your child’s well-being perhaps you should consider Blackpool for a couple of years.

Many will ask why such a thing is necessary, but to me it seems very important to always have at least one parent at home when they are young. How else can you teach your child right from wrong, what is required from them, and most important, discipline?

Typical Creche

It does no good to hand your child over to a virtual stranger at the local crèche every day and expect them to teach your child the essentials in life and how to behave. The mother, or alternatively the father, should be with the child every day at least until they start Primary School, for by that time you will have taught them how to behave, what is acceptable and what is not, and of course discipline. Chief among these things, a parent will have shown the child love and a caring attitude that is crucial to forming the future character of a child.

The report also highlighted a stable home as being highly beneficial to a child’s well-being. It does the child no good if a single mother changes her partner as often as she changes her underwear. Constant change within the family unit was found to be very detrimental, whereas a stable household was considered most beneficial, contributing much to a childs’ happiness.

Arguing? - The Child Feels It Too!

A surprising fact that came out of the survey is that children as young as eight fully understand what is going on when mum and dad discuss money problems in their presence, and it depresses them. Children can be surprisingly sensitive to their surroundings, and what is going on or being said in front of them. I believe that in the very young its more the tone of voice that gets through, especially when they don’t understand the words, and a few unguarded sentences in front of young children like “How on earth are we going to pay the TV licence next week” (desperation) gets picked up whether we want it to or not.

As children get older they start to worry about their looks, which often makes them unhappy. A young boy or girl with the infamous spots breaking out on their face will start to feel insecure, which leads to a general feeling of low self-esteem and unhappiness. Children like to be one of the herd, they like to belong to a group and feel valued within that group. If they have fewer clothes, gadgets, or less pocket-money than their friends they feel insecure and a reduced feeling of ‘belonging’ can lead to depression.

The Curse of Growing Up

Not quite being able to keep up with your ‘friends’ is also the best way of attracting bullies, which not so strangely, is another reason children today are unhappy. In every school in the land, on every street there are the bullies. They are a plague that young people could best do without, for they cause indescribable misery for tens of thousands of children every day and was listed in the survey as a significant cause of unhappiness in today’s children.

1950 - Playing Cowboys and Indians

Its a hard life being a child these days. In my day it was all about playing and generally having fun, but today its more about ‘keeping up with the Jones’s’, trying to please your friends, and getting the latest smartphone first so as to become the centre of attraction (if only for a short while) . Times have changed and so have a child’s priorities.

Let's Make Them All Happy

The most important thing any child needs in life is a loving family, a safe and positive environment, the right conditions for them to learn and grow, and self-respect. Given these things any child will grow to be a happy, self-assured and thoughtful adult. All we have to do is provide them with these things!!!!  Good Luck!

Roy.

Something Every Teenager Should Know

Posted in Child Discipline, Children, England, English Schools, Modern World, Parenting, Teens with tags , , , , , , , , on 28/06/2010 by floroy1942

Today I Have It All - But Tomorrow?

Today most children, and in particular teenagers, live in an insular world where they expect everything handed to them on a plate. Life for them is a free ride, with little or no responsibilities, and no requirement for commitment. Despite this, many still find it necessary to complain, but the reason is they have no idea what real life is all about. As youngsters they have little concept of the meaning of life, what is expected of them, and more importantly, what it can cost.

Sadly, the blame for this attitude must be born by both parents and the education system which have failed miserably in preparing today’s youth for the trials and tribulations of becoming an adult.

The Very Young Bill Gates

It was for this reason that I decided to make a blog of an interesting speech made by Microsoft founder Bill Gates to a group of high-school children in the USA. It came to me through the e-mail from a good friend, and I found it so enlightening that I decided it needed to be shared as widely as possible.

During his talk he emphasised the way ‘political correctness’ and the ‘feel good’ factor has obliterated the previous ideology of preparing school-leavers for the big bad world they are about to enter.

It is no longer acknowledged within the education system that some children are brighter or more talented than others, because to recognise this denigrates the less gifted. To fail an exam today you need to be a monkey swinging through the treetops, because the school has to hit its targets set by the government.

All this, added to the parents giving their children everything they want when they want it, has led to a generation of free-loaders who will soon enter the real world and expect it to hand them a job and huge salary because they feel they are owed it by society.

Bill Gates: A Success Story

Whether you like, admire, or hate Bill Gates, he has never been afraid to speak his mind, and in the talk he had with the young people at the high-school he pulled no punches. He told them all what they needed to hear.

These are the main points he hammered home to them:

Rule 1: Life is not fair – get used to it!

Rule 2: The world doesn’t care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3: You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won’t be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn both.

Rule 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss.

Rule 5: Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your Grandparents had a different word for burger flipping: they called it opportunity.

Rule 6: If you mess up, it’s not your parents’ fault, so don’t whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7: Before you were born, your parents weren’t as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent’s generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8: Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools, they have abolished failing grades and they’ll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn’t bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9: Life is not divided into semesters. You don’t get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do that on your own time.

Rule 10: Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11: Be nice to nerds. Chances are you’ll end up working for one.

Teen Charter?

These truths, for that is what they are, must have come as a great shock to many of those listening to him, but hopefully, it will have opened a few eyes to what life is like in the real world after school. It is hard, it can be painful, but we must each handle it in our own way. Those that learn quickly will succeed, those that do not will ultimately fail.

You would be doing your child a great favour by teaching them Bill Gates’ philosophy of life.

Roy.

My thanks to my friend for passing this on, and to the anonymous originator of the mail.


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