“I love Children“. Here’s the childless and partnerless 30 year-old office professional trying to sound adorable and acceptable in her circle.
“What do you mean, you love All children?”
Well, I reply No. Children, as innocent and defenceless as they are, should be taught to earn love and respect -and to find their individuality. You don’t just love them because they’re cute and do not pose a threat, or because they are the safest long term-investment you can make.
Most western children, in the brutest form of impulses-respondent homo sapiens, live in a world where adults submit to them in order to fulfil their broken longings for unconditional love and comfort. And this is what they’re learning. Affection traded in order to get their own way, or in the worse case a tantrum will do the job easily.
When you meet a child and your eyes instantly roll back into your skull in four-dimensional wonder, ecstasy and passion, just because of the child’s mere existence, then you are fooling the oblivious kid about the world he is going to encounter in the future, if he ever becomes a whole, healthy, respectable mouth that feeds itself.
The world is a fairly meritocratic place in most areas, but it can be a big bad place if you’re not vigilant. So children have to be taught to earn respect through paced effort following rules, self-control and resilience. Not because they’re cute- they’re all cute and there’s millions of them-.
There’s nothing wrong with not liking this one particular child. I don’t mean showing hostility towards it, but making it know why you don’t like him or her, and how he could gain your acceptance and respect. Lessons are best when learned as soon as possible.
It must be baffling for a kid to experience all the devoted love from adults, then a random range of different degrees of likes, dislikes and hates in the playground. They must be thinking “when I grow up everybody will love and respect me because they will all be adults by then”. Then their world crashes slowly.
The playground, where they are all somewhat equal in the hierarchy- teachers being bosses- is no longer there. They find a world of command and execution where the free lunch is no longer available.
Childhood in a civilised society is a place where energy and natural human aggressiveness must be channelled, if not mastered, for the greater wellness of the group. We teach them sports, games, crafts and knowledge. But what they can only see is the fittest kid in the playground terrorising the rest.
And the pupil who works the hardest- academically- is ridiculed, mocked and left aside.
It can take a hard hit for a child to realise that a little craftiness with cheating in exams or hacking exam questions can get him right to the doors of university which path has cost his parents seventeen years of doing a job they hated with people they loathed with a partner they couldn’t scent from a twelve-inch distance.
Going back to loving kids, kids must know why they are loved rather than how much they are loved. There’s something lovable in absolutely each individual, which makes the beauty of a diverse world, and if we don’t want a pot-smoking, swearing and disrespectful teenager, we should all start to be fair.
Roughly as fair as the world we live in.