A student of mine recently confided in me. The things he/she shared awakened me to a startling reality. What kind of an environment are we subjecting our children to? The student said his/her peer group at school had boycotted him! Why? Because he failed to solicit the latest model of a cellular phone from his parents, his ‘lesser’ phone, falling a mile short of ‘cool’. To add to these woes, he/she had expressed no plans or desire to prepare for the SAT and subsequently study abroad. This, proved to be the final nail in the coffin! How could this kind of blasphemy be pardoned? Promptly, his ‘uncoolness’ was punished as he/she was struck out of the ‘gang’.

Is it just I who finds this ABSURD? I too attended a school that is sometimes dubbed elitist. I don’t remember being antagonized for who I was and where I came from! Rich or poor, intelligent or average, tall or short, we were ALL the SAME.

It got me thinking. Could this undeniably unhealthy situation be related more to kids’ parents, rather than to the kids themselves? Are we as parents doing the right thing? Instilling the correct values? Being good examples and role models? Or could it perhaps be that we have lost our path? That in our tearing hurry and desperation to demonstrate that we have ‘arrived’, we might have, unwittingly, unintentionally, misguided our children?

I’m not sure. But it is certainly food for thought. In the meantime, don’t we owe it to our children to ensure that we create an atmosphere that is COMPLETELY FREE of judgment? A place, at home and at our schools, where our children aren’t burdened by banal issues like brands & defining themselves through them? A habitat where experimentation, discovery, self-expression are uninhibited and unstoppable?

We grew up in a simpler time, where we were footloose and fancy-free. Shouldn’t we decide for our children’s sake, JUDGMENT BE DAMMED!?

6 Replies to “JUDGMENT BE DAMMED!”

  1. Times may not have changed in the sense that people in general were unaware (or at least pretended to be) about such situations. It’s good that students are speaking up because that is the only way to drive change.

    1. Yes students are speaking up. But to very very few people. We need to create an environment where they feel free to speak out

  2. You express everything so well Kartik…. It is always a treat reading your write-ups… A similar situation happens with my son, he wanted me to give him a smart watch (as he had announced in his class that, he would be getting it the next day)… I refused to buy it for him… It was a tough call as a parent as he cried the whole evening ( no one will talk to me)…… I believe it is we parents who should be more responsible with our approach. Why do we fear our child from facing difficulties? Doesn’t one become more stronger facing them?

    1. It is very scary.. Even really young kids come under so much pressure.. Its terribly unfair.. But I believe that if a critical mass is reached within the parent community that seizes to be in competition, instead providing values (and not expensive gifts & gadgets), we can alleviate the situation to a huge extent.. I’m glad you are the parent you are Nandita.. Kudos to you 🙂

  3. Somewhere I totally agree to what U said
    Few days back I had an argument with a friend regarding school.
    In particular school kids get spoiled.
    I genuinely feel it’s not school it’s the environment and parents who r responsible and are to be blamed.

    If each one of us inculcate few values in our children without being ignorant trust me things will be better.

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