Stop Comparing Our Children!
Do you secretly compare your child against another child of your friend’s?
Do you secretly compare your eldest child to the youngest child?
We need to stop comparing.
The very moment a parent starts comparing their children against another kid, you as the parent robs away your very own kid’s personal space to grow.
I grew up in the environment of ‘Compare’. When you are a baby, they compare who started talking first, who started walking first, then when you start schooling, they compare the academics, then when you start working, they compare the difference in home allowances and income, then they compare your husbands against other people’s husbands, then when you have a child, your child gets compared to how the other child from the other side of the island and the blah and the blah and the blah…
I ever once heard of a mommy whom shared with me, how she got concerned when she noticed that her youngest child did not learn to flip at a certain month-milestone in comparison to her 1st child, and the paranoia caused her to ‘persistently trained’ her youngest to sit because he couldn’t flip.
I am citing this example not to put anyone down. I am citing this because ‘THIS’ is a huge thing. And the ’THIS’ I am speaking about is the ‘Disease of Comparison’.
Recently I went to an event and I could sense the ‘comparative spirit’ of a mommy asking me about my 7 month old son. And I do find it amusing. But it also made me ponder deeper on this subject matter and made me reflect on my own upbringing and childhood.
The gist of the whole ‘Comparing’ thingy, essentially is brought about by fearful but yet competitive parents. The fear that their children is not keeping up and at the same time competing to want their children to be the best.
I remember how my mother used to love comparing me against my elder sister. Your kids will grow up one day and be able to recognise that you have been comparing.
Parents love to hold the same standards from child to child even within the same family. It is very silly. Because to begin with, nothing is fair. Everyone of us is made uniquely different. It is essentially stupid for a parent to try to compare a more academically sound child to a more hands-on child. You are merely trying to make a fish climb the trees.
I am a late bloomer. There are many things I don’t quite get it at the ‘supposed stage’ of my life. And as a young child then, what do I know about ‘late bloomers’? And I only lived a life thinking and believing that I was not made for academics etc.. So if you are a ‘late bloomer’ and you get compare all the time to others, it gives you the wrong perception of yourself.
Comparison will bring about to the child a wrong perceived value of themselves of their own self-worth and self-esteem. And if they are not lucky like me, to have been able to recalibrate their personal perceived value, many will not fulfil their personal calling or tapped into their unbeknownst potential.
Your child will feel and see themselves in the wrong way because they knew you compared them and benchmarked them against another of their peer. And our children in their innocence will have to try to keep up, while thinking that they are not good enough. Or to perceive that ‘something’ is/was wrong with them.
God has created us individually unique. No matter what religion you may be. Whichever God you might believe in. The truth is; we are all created differently. We may have similarities, but we are all ultimately different.
Our children need to be growing in their comfortable steps and given enough space to learn and understand, and be encouraged by the parents to be challenged from stages to stages, time to time.
Love is uncomparative.