They say parenting is a beautiful experience. It has in store, a lot of ‘firsts’ for parents. The first time an expectant parent feels their baby’s kick in the womb; the first time they drop their crying toddler to school; the first time they celebrate their children’s graduation; the first time they see their children get married; the first time they welcome their grandchild. And each ‘first’ is a unique experience for parents that last a lifetime.
Sadly, not everyone gets a chance to be a part of this wonderful experience. Sometimes, it’s the choice an individual makes and at other times it is the circumstances. Perhaps, that is why parenting is often viewed as a privilege. Mary Chelladurai is an expert counsellor on parenting and children. She says, “A parent who sees parenting as a ‘privilege’ looks more at the best interest of the child. These parents lay boundaries keeping in mind the child’s holistic growth, respect children as individuals, and allow them to develop into independent, self-reliant adults.”
Of course, along with the privilege comes responsibilities. After all, raising children to become emotionally resilient adults is not an easy task. It needs a blend of both discipline and leniency. In this article, Soulveda explores the art of parenting by speaking to individuals at various stages of parenthood.
Parenting responsibilities begins from the day a couple knows they are expecting. From preparing financially for the baby’s arrival to taking care of the conceived mother, soon-to-be-parents have an array of responsibilities laid out for them. As expectant parents, Subha Subramanian and Jazwi Vasanth Thennavan relate to it well. Above everything else, they realise the importance of discussing with each other on how to be effective parents. “When it comes to parenting, Jazwi and I are on the same page. We, as parents, are responsible to raise our child to be a good human being, teach them values, and guide them on the right path. We will help them identify their interests and choose their own career path,” Subha says. Further, she says since every child is different, they would want to encourage their child to think on their own, do the right things by themselves and thrive in any given situation.
Being a single mom wasn’t easy for Jyoti. She has had to plow through her children’s ordeals single-handedly along with the financial difficulties.
With the newfound wisdom to listen patiently to their grandchildren and be non-judgmental, grandparents easily establish a strong bond with their grandchildren.