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Parenting in Rapidly Changing Times
Richard YiapMemberOctober 9, 2010 at 8:04 amPost count: 7
Bob Dylan in 1964 wrote a classic song called “Times they are a changing”. A key phrase is the following :
Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'.
In these times, we have different approaches to life. You can look at the future thru old eyes or young eyes or simply curious eyes. Whichever filters you choose to use, your perspective will be coloured by that.
The Big Factor
The biggest factor that drives change is Technology. Today, its the fast, wired, digital world. Our children are growing up in a culture that we adults have little to no appreciation. I got an education on my 15 yr old's music recently. A couple of weeks ago, I bought a pair of AudioEngine 5 bookshelf powered speakers. These are an audiophile's dream for small speakers. Being a long time audiophile, musical quality is paramount to me.
These speakers were purchased primarily for me to use for presentations and workshop. However, I thought I would get more use out of them, so I set them up in my car in the back seat, driven by a 300W inverter plugged into the cig lighter. So, I pick up my son and the moment he opened the door and heard my music, the moan came “Dad, that is so bad, its terrible and hurting my ears”. When your teen disses (bags) your music, its important not to get offended. So I said to him, OK you can put yours on. Well, it was 2 secs flat for him to rip off my Iphone and plug his in and before I could count to 3, I had techno blaring from the back seat. Now, he loves coming with me in the car because he can listen to his music with oomph.
He's also told me that when he gets my car, the speakers come with it! (I did not commit to this).
So, what did I learn.
Wow, his music is another world and it pays to spend some time listening to it as it reflects the values of our kids.
In these Rapidly Changing Times, there are some keywords that are prevalent :
Curious – Flexible – Non Judgmental – Support – Guide – Understanding – Respect – Communicate – Active Listening – Perspective (theirs) – Acceptance – Unconditional Love – Open
Some keywords to be wary of and to avoid :
Control – Expect – Obedience – Submission – Fear – Worry – Abuse – Frustration – Perfection – Attachment – Rules – Being Right
Is it easy?
No. Our children are our greatest teachers. They reflect in us what we need to change most. They push our buttons to make us realise what is there.
Do I expect you to agree with me? Heck, No. This is just my perspective and opinion which I am entitled to. Its in print to allow you to reflect on and use in whatever way you choose.
I have a most awesome relationship with my son and its been like that for all of his life except for the first 6 months of our marriage separation. I am now 2 years since separation and divorce (I think) has gone through.
The world we grew up in is well in the past. Our expectations and beliefs of what is good, works, gives success are good for yesterday and not all good for tomorrow. More about this later.
So trust that your children are fine. Whatever happens to them will in the end be for their higher good. Everyone goes through seasons in their life, so will your children. If you deny them of a winter experience as part of life, they will have a more severe one when they are off your hands.
Intuitively, you will know within yourself what is right and best to do. You just need to get in touch with yourself deep down.
AnonymousUserParticipantOctober 11, 2010 at 3:13 pmPost count: 19
Wow Richard – this is wonderful information to read.
Unsure about that last line about ‘intuitively I'll know' – when I got divorced, I had no idea and was fumbling around in the dark. Lots of hardship and mistakes being played on both sides with the children unfortunately. After a lengthy period, I think things are starting to get back to sanity but lots of hurt in there too.
I do certainly look forward to more information from you about Fatherhood though – it's a area a whole pile of guys need help in and I'm sure you know lots of them that you'll be directing here to follow you too. Which is another great thing to happen, with guys helping other guys. Thanks for the start of what I expect will an exciting series, by you.
Richard YiapMemberOctober 14, 2010 at 10:37 pmPost count: 7
Many thanks for your kind comments. They are greatly appreciated. Feedback is highly useful as that allows me to be more relevant to readers.
Divorce is potentially one of the most traumatic and devastating event that a man can experience, particularly if he does not see it coming (happens to a lot of men). I was fortunate as I saw the signs 3 years before mine.
I acknowledge the pain and trauma you went through. Know that there is light at the end of the tunnel and you can choose for the experience to make you better or bitter.
Thanks for your comments on “Intuitively I'll know” I should have qualified that comment. Intuition kinda like a sense that needs developing. Its your body talking to you through a sense of a feeling. For example, you are walking thru some place and a chill suddenly comes over you for no reason. That's your intuition.
I have spent the last few years working on developing my intuition and women naturally tune into theirs. Its like the adage “Go with your gut” ie when in doubt, let your gut feelings guide you. Trouble is that I did this far too late to help me with my marriage of 19 years that was empty on both sides of intimacy.
Today, its highly beneficial for men to develop their intuition. An example of a highly successful person who runs on intuition is Richard Branson. Intuition guides you when to go against the herd and it takes courage to do this.
Check these out :
A good starting point is simply to get in touch with your body ie go out in nature and just allow your senses to immerse in the environment, slow your breathing down and feel everything around you.
Intuition allows you to sense below the surface what is going on with your kids. Its really useful in rapidly changing times.
MartinKeymasterOctober 15, 2010 at 12:48 amPost count: 250
Great piece just in a comment, Richard on Intuition.
And it is certainly in the words used that help more men better understand what we write about. As an example, ‘trust your gut' for a lot of guys would resonate more. And that sounds like a pretty good series just in itself – Develop Your Male Intuition.
I know I've done a number of articles in and around development of our male senses too – something men are only now finding the need to explore and develop. Keep up these really interesting posts, mate – fantastic work indeed.
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