Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Parenting and..um...Children-ing?

Aspect: Parenting teenagers.

Sex is such a taboo thing to talk about in India. Or maybe I just assume. But I do know that the western world is more open in talking about sex, dates, etc. with their children. And I do think this is important. In India, parents probably do talk to their children about all this. But it's all portrayed negatively.

When a girl becomes a teenager, the one advice Indian parents give their daughter(s) is "Beti (daughter), don't talk to boys that much okay? Don't be in the same room with him alone...blah blah."

Again, I may be wrong. My writings are purely based on stereotypes (sad, I know) and a few programs on the television (even more sad, I know). My parents are totally cool. They've had all kinds of talks with me and they know that I prefer to have guy friends than girl friends. This doesn't mean I am a slut and that I've had a gazillion affairs and what not. It just means I prefer to talk about music and movies rather than bitch about people behind their backs. (See? Stereotyping again.)

Because my parents have talked to me about a boy's attitude towards a girl, dating, sex, etc., I know my limits. My parents have told me about everything but they've also let me perceive it the way I want to. I have formed my opinions and principles on my own. They didn't plant it in my head. It's kind of like how the media works (according to Russell Peters): "They kind of present things in a way like 'What do you think?'" Plus when they let you think on your own, you tend to have more respect for them. Because you're being treated like an adult.

I think this is highly essential in parenting. Parents and children need to have a more friendly relationship rather than the whole authoritative picture. Advice should be given on basis of care rather than "Oh what will the neighbors think?" kind of an aspect. Parents and children, both, need to be open with each other. I'm open enough to tell my mother who I am dating or who I am not. Of course, fathers, in this aspect, will probably overreact. But that's only because they know what's going on in a guy's mind.

Having said all this, it's not entirely up to the parents. If you (child, you) want your parents to be more open about discussions about sex, dating, boys, girls, crushes, etc. you need to be open about your life to your parents. You need to tell them how you feel. You don't need to tell them immediately. You can tell them later on. But tell them. At the end of the day, if anything goes wrong, they will be the ones to help you.

So, here's a song to start your discussion. Enjoy!

Bruno Mars - Locked Out Of Heaven

Thank you Amma and Appa: You're the world's best parents! Love you!

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