Sitting while I was watching a serial on a channel, I was surprised to see the story unfold. The story was about a girl, who was a watchman’s daughter, but she is so bothered and shameful of her parents that when she gets admission in a good college/university, she tells all lies. She makes friends posing as a rich man’s daughter. She falls for a rich guy, who too loves her, unaware of the truth.
She lies that the man who dropped her at college is a servant. She behaves like strangers with her mother, whom she happens to meet at a friend’s place. Her mother was a maid there. She wears clothes given by the rich families who live in the posh building, where her father has managed to get a servant’s quarter as he was the watchman of the building.
Seeing it as the episodes passed, I was left wondering, what is the story trying to tell us? Have our lives become so superficial? Is it a shame to be poor? Are family bonds so weak that financial conditions make you ashamed of them in public? I was shocked!
Another thing that bothers me, is the drive or craze that I see in people,especially children, for brands and such superficial things. I mean, children want everything, which has their favorite cartoon or character. It could be anything and everything, a school bag, pencil box, dress, shirt, skirt, water bottle, coloring book, even undies and what not!
This generation is going trendy, modern and high profile. For them, it is LOVE only if the parents buy them the Ben10 cars, yoyos, watches or the Barbie dolls, Elsa’s blue gown, some Disney princesses labels and stickers, wall posters and takes them to places where those pictures or things could be.
Why is it that today, a child isn’t happy sharing the moment of his or her birthday, but it is an occasion to flaunt their collections in front of their friends!
Why is it that their smile is not beaming when they see a star in their notebooks? Why has happiness become so expensive? Why do children measure the parent’s love according to the theme cake and party that they organize in a famous restaurant or a hotel? Why isn’t there that joy in giving than in taking? Why this selfishness and materialistic approach?
Those little hearts and minds, are they corrupted by the times? The surroundings? The others? Some blame might be put on the television or Disney and other corporations who created them, isn’t it? Or is it us, as parents? Are we not moving away some guilt of ours by pampering the child and spoiling them rotten! And we expect them to grow up with moral values.
When a child isn’t bothered, why my father has a frown on his face after he returns from office, when a child cannot see the way his mother keeps back the handbag she likes because she wants to buy him a Ben10 watch, when an elder sister cannot see the smile of her younger sister when she plays with the prior’s toys, when a child cannot see the hours the father works overtime to earn some money more to send him to the best of schools, when a child cannot wipe a tear off the mother’s cheek because she is too busy in her work or game! Then I believe we aren’t bringing up children in our homes, we are modeling robots. With no feelings, no emotions, no “sharing is caring” belief, no “kindness”, no morals and no values.
This is extremely dangerous. We are making our children insensitive. I am glad I was born in a time when we were human and humane! I still get tears when I see a poor child beg or work at tea vendors. I still wish I could help those children whom I see selling balloons or flowers on roadsides. And I hope I am able to instill it in my children and the children who are entrusted to my care while I am their teacher.
Let the children learn that sometimes buying from a poor person, you allow him to earn money for meal. Let them know that to get water, children walk miles and draw water from wells with their little hands. Let them see how the money spent on their toys and dresses is enough to pay a poor man’s child’s education. Let us show them that side of the world too. Let them feel pain as humans. Let them see the turmoils and hardships. Maybe then they will value you as parents and thank the Lord for what He has endowed on them.
Let them learn to give, to care for others, to feel for others, to respect all, to be understanding towards those who are deprived. Let our children become angels of Hope, Love and Peace for all, instead of being lost in their own selfish needs and desires.
**Note: This article took form on the advice and idea of my elder brother, Imran Yousuf Khan. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to word your thoughts!!