I watched yesterday's news item of a school girl's suicide over a confiscated mobile phone with shock and disbelief. I can't imagine the pain the parents are going through right now (she was their only child).
What makes a little girl take her own life when her mobile phone is found. When you know you are not allowed to bring mobile phones to school, what makes you bring it in the first place. The news item said that she was scared of the parent's finding out that she had a mobile and that after the Principal called her to the office, she wanted to go to the toilet where she hung her self with the aid of her tie.
Why is a little girl so scared of her parents finding out that she did something wrong? What's the worse that can happen? She will get a scolding, she will be grounded. Is it worse than taking your life? Is it worth taking your own life?
As a parent it scared me. It scared me because I can't understand what makes children act this way. It scared me because just a week ago 8 students took poisonous seeds because birthday cards and love letters were found by a teacher and two of those students died. They too were scared of the parents finding out.
Are parents monsters? Is loosing your life better than facing the music...
I am determined to remember that I was a teenager once when my kids reach the turbulent years.
I am determined to remember that I was curious about the opposite sex, that I was the biggest flirt around, that I had numerous crushes, that I sent millions of valentine cards every year.
I am determined to remember that I lied to my parents sometimes to get to a party, that when there were sleepovers, we spent hours looking at male genitalia because none of us had seen a real one by then.
I will remember that we were once chased out by the Vijitha Yaapa manager for browsing sex books with pictures.
Though I never smoked, drank or experimented with drugs, I will remember that teenagers are curious about these things.
I will remember that all these are normal teenage behavior when the time comes, though H1 will probably be grounded for eternity should she attempt any ;o)
Are parents too strict with kids for them to be so scared? My father was very strict with us. Heck..he didn't even allow us to watch TV after 9.00 pm as 'those Amercan bullshit' will corrupt our little minds. But my mom was sooo cool about everything. We could tell her about our heartaches and crushes. We used to even show her those valentine cards. I think that's the way to go. Be approachable.
I want H1 to know that no matter what, no matter how much trouble she is in, the safest place is in her parents arms. That though she might get a scolding, those arms will encircle her all the time.
Even now we make sure that after a scolding or a time out, we hug her, kiss her and say that it's alright. We let her know that we forgive her and love her. I hope that will let her know that no matter how much she has misbehaved or done wrong that nothing will ever change how much we love her.
I hope that no child ever takes their life in fear of facing their parents...
That no parent ever has to go through the agony of loosing their precious child...