Love is such a strong force that the lack of it, or the perceived lack of it, can really damage someone. This is especially true for growing children and teenagers who are already at the risk of depression in this crazy, high-pressure world. Everybody's love language is different; some children may choose to cuddle and kiss and wish you ‘Good Night’ every day, while other kids may choose to remain silent and just count on you to always be there for them. Our children are more intuitive and observant than we know, and can pick up hints from our behaviour on just how much we mean to them.
This girl from Pune had in her life her parents and a younger brother - seemingly no paucity of love. But recently, she breathed her last. She committed suicide and left behind a last note citing the reason behind her death: "My parents don't love me." She said, I was being ignored by my parents as they were being more attentive towards my younger brother.
We cannot even imagine the pain her parents must have felt on reading these words by their daughter. The relationship between a parent and a child is unique - as parents, we think we know our child inside out, including their emotional and mental state. Then how do these things happen? How does a child feel so unloved so as to end their life for good? Can the love of a parent fall short?
The suicide rates in India have been going up in an alarming manner, particularly among young children and teens. But when the reason for loss of life is attributed to the parents - the very people who protect us and love us the most - can anything be more heart-breaking?
“Nobody cares if I am alive anyway...”
“I’m so tired of this life!”
“You love my sibling more than me!”
“You do not love me!”
Yes, this happens to a lot of children - and we often see this as a passing phase. It is indeed true that many kids eventually grow out of it. However, there's no knowing how badly it has affected a child. That’s where, as a parent, the wisest thing to do is address it, even if we think it is just a bout of melodrama.
Let's listen more attentively when the child is talking - or not talking - and look for cues that may lead us to what they are really feeling. Even if you find your attention drawn to one child, make sure your husband and you alternate between giving all kids equal attention. The time and encouragement that comes from parents can make or break a child. Unloved children go on to becoming adults who lack confidence or have difficulty expressing themselves.
It is really as easy as cuddles now and then, celebrating your child's successes, and being there for them when they fail. The kind of support and comfort only a parent can give is all that a child needs. Let's be more careful and sensitive to the needs of our kids - it's really very important.
Via The Times Of India