Parenting Case Study:
Sohini was moved to a hostel at the age of 14. It was a new world for her. Being away from her parents was a new freedom. While freedom was a plus, stringent rules were the negatives of hostel life. Unless and until the school authorities receive an email from the parents, the child is not allowed to go out of the hostel. The initial few days were all filled with fun with new friends and new ambiance.
The gang of girls gathers around the table for dinner every day and the most discussed topic would be about boys. Proposals for a date would be the hottest topic. Listening around and watching the happenings Sohini found herself to be very different, for, she had not encountered any of such instances. She noticed most of them had a boyfriend and that had become a new status. And her little teenage monkey mind, absorbing in all the happenings around had already started working on some ideas.
On one bright Sunday morning, Sohini was unusually up in the early hours and was ready. The clock struck ten and she called up the warden to confirm the receipt of the email. In no time, she walked out of the hostel gate proudly along with one of her guy friend. The two of them went to a nearby mall. As always, sharp at ten, her mobile rang. She had to pick up as it was her mother’s call and not answering the call would be unnecessary complications. With noises around, she carefully chose a corner place and received the call. Sohini was unusually active and quick in responding unlike other Sunday, her mother noticed the change.
Something was unusually different her mother sensed the hint. Sohini’s replies for the little details for her mother’s question were not convincing. Soon, her mother disconnected the call and called her roommate, whose number she had saved. To her shock, she was right in guessing that Sohini wasn’t in the hostel.
Reacting and yelling was not at all a solution, she knew. Dialing again she said firmly to Sohini to return back to the hostel.
The things would blow up for sure, her mother knew. Before the rumour spreads, she called up the warden to inform and to know, how was she allowed without her email.
“We have received your email last evening Ma’am.”
Came the reply. The parents were called to the school. There were a couple of similar emails sent from the duplicate email id in the past too. Settling the issue amicably without hurting the feeling of the young minds the couple thought is the right solution. With the support of the Principal, the matter was resolved, counseling the children. Sohini, admitted her mistake and promised her parents that she would never make them feel ashamed. And thereafter, there was more transparency between Sohini and her mother.
In the above case, Sohini’s act was a clear showcase of peer pressure. However, without much difficulty, she was able to get back on to her track. The parents along with the principal dealt the sensitive issue appropriately, what generally is rare.
Kids today with exposure of ever-evolving technology have tremendous potential to achieve the impossible. Communication and transparency are two important elements that can save unnecessary stress during parenting a teenager. Parenting styles have to be tweaked every now and then to suit the situation.