RUNNING AN EFFECTIVE FAMILY (8) – Fundamental truths


Our society shall become saner the day we begin to ask ‘How much discomfort have I brought to my neighbour and my community in my bid to exercise my personal liberty to celebrate’? Unfortunately, it is a question we never bother to ask because all that matters to us is us and no society develops that way. We have seen families close down a street simply because they want to celebrate something. Same way we have seen religious bodies subject innocent citizens to the torture of being stuck in traffic for hours simply because we want to worship (I have experienced that in almost every African country I have visited). How well can your neighbour rest because your family wants to dance or pray? Every family must have an entertainment and recreation system, but it must not be at the expense of other people’s sanity.
· Security System – How secured is your family? This is another system that must be in place because families have suffered preventable loses because of disorderliness and lack of proper security system for every member of the family. Unfortunately, in Africa, we think security is erecting high walls and hiring gun-wielding hefty- looking policemen whose pot belly should worry any right thinking person to guide us. Every developed nation knows that the most powerful security system is information gathering and even Jesus declared that nothing sets people free like the truth. So, how protected is your family? What child protection policy have you put in place to safeguard your child?
Unfortunately, I have seen parents fool themselves that their children are safe simply by locking them up and ensuring they don’t visit anybody, yet I have found myself counseling over whatsapp loads of teens who have slept with a minimum of ten guys in the last 5 months without leaving their bedrooms. Hmmmm! How secured is your family?
We live in the best estates and hire the best security guards and we assume our kids are safe in our well secured homes, oblivious of the fact that a child doesn’t need to leave the house before he/she is messed up in the 21st century. Or how do you explain the number of children that have lost their virginity to uncles, aunties, house helps or even lost their sanity to porn via the smart phones or TV programmes. Do you assume your child is secured with another girl who has come to visit her and they are in the room together playing?
How empowered is your child against child sexual abuse and what have you taught your child about sex or you still feel your child is too young when loads of 6-year-olds are sexually active across Africa? What security systems run your home and what child protection policy systems have you put in place (you might want to get Taiwo Akinlami’s CDs on CPS)? I mentioned it before now that effective security is more of information gathering and structures than hiring guards. Of what use is a guard who stays at the gate when your child is surfing porn on his phone or engaging in phone sex? And to think that your child can actually get his way by simply bribing your guard with some Naira bills when you are not at home makes it more complex. So, what is the security system in your family? Every family must agree on certain issues to prevent avoidable accidents which I will talk about later. For example, how dangerous are your bathroom doors when you have infants at home or how dangerous could your shoes that you mistakenly left in your room be to the movement of your child after lights out?
Sometimes the person creating problems for our families is not the devil that you can’t see, it’s the Boko Haram in you that manifests as disorderliness and arrogant ignorance.
To be continued.

Leave a Reply