Why I fear good par­ent­ing has fi­nally taken flight

The Herald - - FRONT PAGE -

WHEN fly­ing abroad from Glas­gow re­cently, it was in­ter­est­ing to wit­ness the at­ti­tude to­day of many young par­ents to­ward their chil­dren.

On the planes, fly­ing out and in dur­ing school term, there were sev­eral chil­dren of school age. Clearly many par­ents de­cide to at­tach a higher pri­or­ity to a hol­i­day abroad than to the pur­suit of their chil­dren’s ed­u­ca­tion – a value judg­ment which is ob­vi­ously not above crit­i­cism.

An­other trend, which ap­pears to be more preva­lent, is that of par­ents tak­ing babes in arms on hol­i­day abroad. Of­ten the child is obliv­i­ous about what is go­ing on other than the fact that it is in a strange en­vi­ron­ment up in the air and of­ten un­happy about it. Sit­ting next to a dis­con­certed young child in the en­closed space of a plane, 35,000ft in the air, for a pro­longed pe­riod is not an ex­pe­ri­ence of a cham­pagne na­ture.

Com­ing down to earth, it of­ten ap­pears that we live in a so­ci­ety where chil­dren go ev­ery­where. One can re­call a num­ber of res­tau­rant ex­pe­ri­ences spoiled by roam­ing, noisy chil­dren with whom par­ents at­tempt to ne­go­ti­ate. The con­di­tion of our so­ci­ety to­day owes much to the par­ents, who be­lieve that their chil­dren can do no wrong and that it is cer­tainly no one else’s busi­ness to put their off­spring right.

Ian W Thom­son, 38 Kirk­in­til­loch Road, Len­zie.

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