COLUMN: Kill your kids with love only

2016-05-05 06:00


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Every child needs and deserves parental love.

Love is a critical and fundamental aspect of human development. It is so amazing it can turn the world around.

It is natural to yearn for love. To love and be loved.

This longing probably says a lot about our creator as human beings, just the thought that hit my mind.

I am not going to attempt to define love, as in my view, it is a generic concept that can be defined or seem to be interpreted in different perspectives. It is quite a personal thing. What means love to you might mean something totally different to somebody else. So I will leave it to you to make your own judgments of what it is to you and for you.

Having argued that love is critically fundamental for human development. In this particular writing, I am boldly bringing to your attention that EVERY CHILD NEEDS AND DESERVES PARENTAL LOVE that is ‘love from biological parents’ Yes this is a point I am raising today.

Let us reflect a bit. How many children grew up without their parents in South Africa? Even in your own community for that matter. You will agree with me that there are so many without their biological parents. It is either parents are not together anymore ‘broken relationships’ or they deceased etc.

One of my observations is that more and more grandparents are raising children of their sons and daughters especially in our African communities. Obviously there are many factors contributing to this - what is called ‘up-sent parenthood’. In other cases you will get children living with their biological parents but have not been given or shown love and support they deserve ‘parents are there but not there’ so to say.

In previous years I had an opportunity to work with so called “street-children” in Cape Town. As I engaged, getting to know them better through visiting them on the street and have conversations with them. It appeared that, most of them ended up on the street because of ‘lack of parental love, care and support’ some were abused by step parents, even by their own biological parents due to various causes.

Quite frankly, to love, to care and to support your child does not cost much. It’s not always about money. In fact, the economic aspect should be the ‘after layer’ kind of a thing. What is fundamental is that parental love and care for children. Young people in general are clever human beings, not that adults are not. Young people can see if parents are struggling economically, but what becomes more important to them is to see that ‘parental love, care and support’ in the mist of any impoverish circumstances. All they need is your love and care Bazali, the rest comes after.

Recently, I watched a documentary on TV. A story of a young many who grew up without his biological parents. His grandmother took him from his mother, apparently she was still very young 17 years old. So as a family they decided that she cannot be able to look after him due to her age. When he got older his mother passed away. What he shared was that, he never experienced his mother’s love. I never got what happened to his father. He resorted to drugs and other substances as coping mechanisms to his situation. What was profound as I was listing to him - He needed his mother’s love. He needed to bond with his mother. Unfortunately he never got that chance.

His story got me thinking about what we call “Amapharaphara” a kasi term, which refer to young people mostly males, who rob people’s belongings and money to buy substances such as Tik, dagga and food etc. Do we exactly know why they do what they do, their driving forces? Or we just assume the worse of them?

How many of us ever bothered to seat with them as human beings and have decent conversations and listen to their deepest stories. You will be surprised of what you might hear if you take a chance to get to know them in a more meaningful and intentional way.

I want to argue that, the issue of “Amapharaphara” is mostly the symptom of what is being argued here ‘lack of parental love, care and support’. It is crucial to listen to someone, to get to the root cause of why the person is doing what he is she is doing, before clouding it with any judgments.

As the community we have isolated these young people. We even labelled them “Amapharaphara”. They are our brothers and sisters, probably reacting on what they never experienced ‘love, care and support’. These are my general observations, which you might relate or might get you thinking at least.

There is another TV programme, which I enjoy watching ‘Khumbulekhaya’ on SABC 1 which plays every Wednesday at 21h:00. Most stories played there have to do with reuniting disconnected family members. The most fundamental thing from this TV programme is that it connects loved ones who have disconnected for a long time due to various reasons. For almost all its series, key thing that keeps on coming in almost every story of individuals, is the desire for parental love, which have been argued here.

In conclusion, parents, young or old. Love, care and support your children from day one. Your love that you need to show for them is critical important and fundamental for their own holistic development. When a child is loved, cared for and supported, chances are that child will gain self-esteem or confidence that will help him or her in the future. Some people struggle with the issue of self-esteem, not because they are not good looking or what so ever, but simple because it was never infused to them by their parents.

Young people please do not get pregnant at a younger age. The damaged can be huge than you can imagine. In your everyday actions and decisions. You must think long term. How will this affect my future and the future of my children? I know when we young and energetic we can be very naïve and say to ourselves “we just experiencing things” well the same things you experiencing might be the pains of your life.

If we dream of a great nation, with great leaders, skilled citizens and sound families. It begins with you! We need to Invest love care and support in our children, before some “bunch of strangers” do that for us.

Remember our African proverb ‘It takes a whole village to raise a child’ let us unite, in loving, caring and supporting our children for a brighter future. So that indeed, we can have a society that have no “Orphans, no street-children” gangersterim and so on. A society that lives by the concept of Ubuntu ‘Umntu ngumntu ngabantu’ I am because you are.

Love your child and your neighbour’s child as yours… All they need is love, care and support. V Contact me at


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