Thursday, 1 July 2010

Hereditary Behaviour

I suppose most people get to the point of being a parent and ask themselves "What parts of who I am would I like to pass on to my children?" or "How can I set a good example?" Anyone who's been through here could probably tell you that the question isn't as straight forward as it first appears.

I worry that, if I raise my child to be respectful and nice, he'll be bullied. I'm worried that if I teach him to handle himself, he'll be a bully. I'll shamefully admit that although both of those situations are undesirable, one of them worries me less than the other.

I worry that I'll pass my insecurities and faults onto our son, but not my inquisitiveness, not my calm. I'm worried I'll pass on a quick fist wired to a hot head instead of a trusting nature.

How do we try to affect our child? What we tell them is surely a tiny part of it; when even the example we set by our own actions, however hard to keep decent and honest,  is undermined at every turn by the media and pop-culture.

No, I'm not one of those 'Broken-Britain' clowns. I think things are fine - or at least as fine as they've ever been, but there's much less of an impression that one can leave upon a child now.

I'm realizing that we don't get to raise our kids alone, that there's a world out there that's going to raise them too, whether we like it or not; and that's a scary thing to face.