Yesterday, I walked into a repeat episode of an old Nigerian tv series “Egde of Paradise”. I still remember the story line and most of the plot. I watched a few scenes yesterday that brought instant tears to my eyes. On the bed was a little boy of about 10 years old whose arms were badly burnt lamenting to his sister.
Boy: I told daddy but he said I was lazy. I told mummy too and she just won’t listen. Nobody listens to me. Now I don’t have my hands anymore.
And there was the next few scenes showing the father all tensed up finally bursting out to his equally worked up wife.
Father: I should have listened to him. I failed him. I failed all of you.
Okay so here is the story summarised. The boy was in boarding house and had complained to his parents during visits that he was being bullied in the hostel. His dad said he was just being lazy and that it was all part of the training. Unfortunately, the bullies went as far as taking him at night to one of the school labs and forced him to either carry a chemical boiler with his bare hands or put his hands into the boiling content (I can’t really remember). He sustained very bad burns that required surgery and a whole lot of medical jargon. Just look at what a little neglect cost the whole family: Medical bills, legal bills (of course it had to be a court case) and the emotional pain and stress.
I couldn’t resist the tears when the boy was lamenting in his handicapped state and I remembered the whole story. It’s very sad that he had to go through all that just because no one paid attention to him.
Parenting/raising children is not a job that comes without sacrifices. You need to give a full dose of ATTENTION to the total well-being of the child. It is not enough to put them in expensive schools, send them on vacations or get them the latest technology. Sending them off to boarding schools does not even lessen or shift your responsibilities to their teachers or guardians. In my opinion it increases your responsibilities because you can’t see them often for regular updates and you have to make up for that during the holidays.
So if the Number 1 reason for sending your child to boarding house is to be free and have more time, I’m sorry but I dare say you have missed something vital. What they need most (GOD first) is YOU. Listen to them, show them the way by living the life. They can’t learn from someone they are not connected too.
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he would not depart from it (Prov. 22:6)
You can’t train a child from a distance!!!