By: Mrs. Olanipekun Eunice Temitope
Parenting is the process of building, guiding, promoting and supporting physical, emotional, social and intellectual developments of a child from infancy to adulthood.
The outbreak of Corona Virus (also known as Covid-19) which is now global pandemic has created a lot of negative effects on parents, children and the society at large which is affecting parenting in no small measure.
Covid-19 marks the return of a very old and familiar enemy of human beings. Nothing in the world has ever totally extinguished viruses, bacterias, and parasites that cause diseases. The world has been living with many of these diseases that still kill till today. For instance, malaria kills almost half a million people every year and has been with us for long. Plague of Justinian that struck in 6th century killed about 50 million people. The black death of the 14th century killed up to 200 million people. Small pox that might have killed about 300 million people in 20th century is not yet totally eradicated. Also, there was the 1918 influenza pandemic that killed between 50 and 100 million people. At present, HIV/AIDS still lives in our midst without vaccine or known cure and had killed over 32 million people with about 75 million people living with the virus and more people are being infected everyday.
The novel Corona virus pandemic is on class of it’s own. What makes covid-19 more pronounced is that when it infects a host, that host becomes the cellcular factory to manufacture more viruses which are capable of replicating on their own. The symptoms created by infectious pathogens such as sneezing, coughing, or bleeding is highly contagious.
Corona virus pandemic has put a lot of things on hold for people all over the world. Schools, working places, Worship centers are close down. Physical/social distancing, using of nose cover or face shield, frequent washing of hands are now the new normal.
In reality, there are a whole lot to navigate for everyone especially for parents to enable them carry out successfully, their duties of parenting. It is a known fact that to navigate and survive this period financially, emotionally, socially and physically is very difficult which makes parenting more daunting.
But with this obvious reality, parents and guardians have to be stable in order to control and manage their children/wards in order to have a wonderful post covid experience. The present situation has changed the mental thinking of children, anxiety had set in especially for kids in terminal classes. Children are being exposed to the negative influence of television and internet more than ever before.
The question is how do we intend to manage the post covid-19 pandemic effect on our kids?
Seriously, this time calls for parents attention more than ever before. Below are few points that will help parents to manage their kids during and after covid-19 lockdown. Parents should –
- Be open and listen to the children – Children should be allowed to speak their minds without unnecessary garge whole parents help them to make the right the decisions
- Be honest – Children spend all their time with the parents now so they are now the children full time role model
- Be supportive – Children need the support of the parents more to help them to build self confidence in themselves. Parents should support their ideas and make corrections without shouting them down as most parents always do.
- Educate the children about covid-19 – There is an urgent need for parents to explain all about covid-19 to the children so that they won’t be misguided from outside. Parents must specially intimate the children with the preventive measures against the pandemic
- Create one on one time with each of them – parents mus hear children out separately in order to understand their individual and peculiar weaknesses and strengths so as to be able to fix each of their weaknesses and shortcomings before it is too late
- Get structured – Parents must plan daily routine in order to keep the children on track. Reading, playing, domestic training, physical exercise, and prayer sessions should be planned ahead and well structured for a balance development of the children educationally, physically and spiritually.
- Instill the spirit of social distancing in the children and insist they maintain high level of personal hygiene
- Maintenance of Family harmony is very important at this time to fill the gaps earlier created by pre covid-19 busy schedules of the parents.
- Parents should keep calm and should not transfer aggression created by financial difficulties occasioned by the economic hardship of covid-19 era towards the children.
- Parents should manage bad behaviours in the children now and there is ample time being spent with them to effect necessary changes in their not too good behaviours.
In conclusion, Parents should make a realistic family budget. This is very important in order to successfully navigate present financial difficulties. Children should only get want they needed and not what they want. The duties of parents to prepare their children psychologically, emotionationally and make them healthy in order to be able to face the life challenges ahead in post covid-19 era can never be overemphasized.
Since there is no yet known cure for covid-19, parents should place the children on immune booster foods. Food items like garlic, ginger, bitter leaf, scent leaf, vegetables and fruits should be always included in the children foods. Enough of processed food which are full of chemical!
As parents prepare the children against all unforeseen circumstances with power within those reach, it is my prayer that God Almighty will rid the world of the known and and unknown diseases and pandemic.
Mrs. Olanipekun, a staff of the Oyo State Tescom teaches Civic Education.