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Saba Waqas |

We as a parent always want the best for our kids i.e. good food, fine clothing, loftiest schooling and other luxuries of life but when it comes to fulfilling our basic responsibilities we tend to hide behind own fabricated rules suiting our wishes! Young ones learn from their surroundings and more specifically from the company around them. Thriving societies focus on the upbringing of children to enable a diverse yet responsible future generation.

Develop a bond of friendship with your kids. Maid culture should be considered a taboo rather than a social symbol or something to be proud of

Are we on the right track in this regard; are there things that need rectification, can we do a better job at taking care of our kids? This will be my discussion in the subsequent passages. Albeit, we are facing several other major issues these days ranging from politics to terror, we are ignoring a core problem that can drastically affect future generations in our country. And that is the upbringing of our kids!

Maids replacing mothers

As parents, we are sole bearers to our kids, leading them and showing how things are done. This is no menial task that can be easily outsourced to a perfect stranger normally referred to as maid in exchange for a monthly salary. Let’s look at the equation; at one end we undertake utmost effort for putting our kids in superior schools but at the other side we hire maids for feeding, toileting, taking care of them.  It’s a so called fashion these days to delegate duties to a maid as soon as you bear a child so that the mother continues her social engagements without interruption.

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This might sound harsh but it’s foremost for any mother to fulfill all her child’s needs including training and grooming. How could a literate mother pass her child to an illiterate maid that is normally too young with no practical training for such delicate work? Even as working mother, one can’t ignore these obligations towards her child. It’s a well-known saying by Brigham Young, “You educate a man; you educate a man.

Travel with them, do healthy activities with them, take interest in their studies, share their stories, listen to them, praise them, you’ll get to learn from them even more

You educate a woman; you educate a generation.” It will be right to say a mother holds the future for this generation. She can either bring out the best in her kids by inculcating good traits or else produce worse habits in a child by not spending meaningful time and effort. Mothers need to make special efforts to raise their kids especially these days where social media has taken over all family values and bonds.

Maids at the receiving end

The treatment meted out to most maids by their employers is also noteworthy here. They are ill-treated and not properly fed but are expected to fulfill their tasks perfectly. I have witnessed so many instances in restaurants where families bring their children along with maids who are told to sit in a corner without giving them food. High level of personal degradation is on free display. First signs of failure in kids training by mentoring them to discriminate between social classes. The very class which is hired to feed and plays with them, do not merit the honor of breaking bread at the same table. Don’t bring your maids to a restaurant if you can’t feed them.

Read more: Loafology: The art of breaking bread

Kids need parents more than luxury

Pay heed to this quote, “what goes around comes around”. Therefore, teach your kids what you expect from them as behavior in the later stage of life. It’s our moral obligation to give them attention apart from fulfilling their basic needs, they require emotional support and bonding. Share your moments with them and not just earnings. Try giving them more time, don’t ignore them or dismiss their trivial issues as petty because this could affect their thinking in a positive or negative way.

Teach them good from bad and virtues of good ethics. When they are in need of something they should be running in your arms and not in maid’s

Giving them materialistic things and telling a maid to adhere to their problem can further aggrandize to their unruly behavior which you experience in their teen phase. If you tend to your kids yourself then there’s a greater chance they appreciate the relationship and feel a sense of attachment in later years. But if you leave them on maids there’s a possibility they’ll grow adrift and not bother to look after you in old age. Bear in mind, kids learn from you. They are watching each step you take!

Providing kids with a maid, means they’ll instinctively follow her. The general adverse effect I’ve seen in children who are brought up by maids is a use of foul language. Also, their accent somewhat starts sounding alike. It’s a common practice here that maids bored with their mundane routine and ill equipped themselves at practical life, develop bad habits of varying degrees. Some parents have a knack of leaving young ones at home even for late night parties, putting them at higher risk of adopting these habits from an early stage.

Read more: “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone”

Same parents might later find unpleasant fact of their offspring involved in nasty activities, or worse coping with a serious case of abuse. Similarly, kids are involved in drugs and alcohol due to lack of supervision. Maids are least concerned what your kids are doing and getting themselves involved into, they are here for their own need and that is money. It is fruitless to assume she will think or act like a real mother.

Many parents who struggle to abridge the child-parent gap when faced with a rebellious adolescent are the ones who inadvertently created it during early childhood

Henceforth, kidnapping instances are more common nowadays. Mothers leave their young ones with maids and send them anywhere without hesitation which then results in kidnapping scenarios. It can be a case of direct involvement where the maid is lured into assisting an interested party or just indirect role by not being very attentive to children playing on their own in a public park etc.

Kidnappers are always in the search of weak targets and by weak I mean maid assisting the child. The trauma you pass through in this circumstance is better to have kids under your guidance and protection so that you don’t repent later on. Barring this in mind you can’t blame a careless maid later.

Read more: How to Make Study Time Fun for Kids

Another aspect worth mentioning here is, many parents who struggle to abridge the child-parent gap when faced with a rebellious adolescent are the ones who inadvertently created it during early childhood. It’s our moral obligation to pay heed to the character building of our children. There’s an emerging trend of employing Filipino maids these days. This is taken as a sign of affluence and pride.

The trauma you pass through in this circumstance is better to have kids under your guidance and protection so that you don’t repent later on

However, even these trained personnel should not be mistaken as a full-time replacement for a mother. Rather teaching our kids to rely on their two hands we are making them dependent on maids. “If kids aren’t doing the dishes, it means someone else is doing that for them,” Julie Lythcott-Haims, former dean of freshmen at Stanford University and author of “How to Raise an Adult”, said during a TED Talks Live event. “And so they’re absolved of not only the work but of learning that work has to be done and that each one of us must contribute to the betterment of the whole,” she said.

Lythcott-Haims believes kids raised on chores go on to become employees who collaborate well with their coworkers, are more empathetic because they know firsthand what struggling looks like, and are able to take on tasks independently.

Read more: The first American woman to conquer K-2

Maids are least concerned what your kids are doing and getting themselves involved into, they are here for their own need and that is money

Give your kids YOUR time. Kids are innocent, they can be easily molded either way. Make them rely on you for advice. Teach them good from bad and virtues of good ethics. When they are in need of something they should be running in your arms and not in maid’s. Cherish these moments, the time spent is never going to come back.

Travel with them, do healthy activities with them, take interest in their studies, share their stories, listen to them, praise them, you’ll get to learn from them even more. The kids you nurture are your everlasting property and blessing. Develop a bond of friendship with your kids. Maid culture should be considered a taboo rather than a social symbol or something to be proud of.

Saba Waqas lives in Islamabad. With interests in cooking, traveling, and exploring various cultures, additionally, she writes articles regarding social matters.

Saba Waqas lives in Islamabad. With interests in cooking, traveling, and exploring various cultures, additionally, she writes articles regarding social matters.

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