There’s a kind of honest policy that runs as the base in my family. When we met before our wedding for the first time, that was something we started following – being honest – without realizing that we are making way for our daughters to follow suit. And that has been the biggest example to live by and also the most responsible lesson taught, in my view.
For whenever things go wrong during school life, or when they get reprimanded in school for something, I’ll always be given the honest explanation of what really happened. When friendships fail or when they want to talk about somebody, there’ll be an honest talk about it. It could be because of a misunderstood problem by the daughter or by the friend. But the moment a transparent and honest view-point is presented before me, I just go with my child and support her to the fullest. I just trust them implicitly as they’ve learnt the “being honest” lesson very well. I stress over this one point – Even when she has made a mistake, I support her. Because she has been honest in accepting it to me.
It gives a mom like me, who used to be paranoid for various things that happen around, a sense of peace to know what really happened.
I used to sit with my girls during their class exams to help them revise the subjects. But I always had it in the back of my head that I should let them be how they are and they should be allowed to study to their level and the level I expect them to study and score marks. So, I helped them all along till Grade 5 and left them to study on their own from Grade 6. Their projects were theirs to do. Maybe I’ll help them to go shopping for buying stuff for their projects. And the little one, suddenly went from 95% to 75% or so, when she started studying on her own. I knew the teacher will be shocked. I was waiting for the PTA to happen. And when the teacher saw me, she just started worrying so much about the percentage that has suddenly dropped. I calmly smiled at her and said that this 75% is her own effort, with no help from me. And so it needs to be appreciated. The little one was very happy that I told her teacher honestly that it is all her effort and that she needs to be appreciated. And I too understood that it is not enough to talk about honesty, we also need to set an example of living by it.
Once when her friend suddenly stopped talking to her, the younger one was very upset. I suggested that she ignore it and leave it. But she went up to her and told her “Whatever problem you have just tell it to me honestly. Do not hide behind this silence !” Yeah, she can be just bluntly honest.
She was being teased with another boy, when they were hardly 11 years old. She and this boy are good friends and she didn’t like being teased like that. So, she used to shout at all the friends and tell “Honestly, we are only friends”. But this boy had kept quiet, enabling the others to continue teasing. She was very upset with him because he didn’t tell the truth – which was that they are only friends. She refused to talk with him till he apologized to her properly.
Once she left the Tupperware tiffin box in the railway station and boarded the train, while coming back from school. She realized her mistake. Got down in the next station. Went back and checked and it was gone. Came home and told me the whole thing. Accepting the mistake and owning it up makes one a better person. We, as parents, are not going to gobble them up for when they tell us about a mistake done.
My husband too always insists on owning up for their mistakes, for we are human. It actually helps us to deal with it in a better way than knowing from others about what our children have done.
All said and done, now its a way of life. And that is how things are done here. It feels good to have instilled one of the best qualities to my children.