Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Thoughts on Valentine's day

It is Valentine's day today and many millions of couples and wannabe couples are expressing their love for each other in many millions of creative ways. I, for one, do not believe in "celebrating" Valentine's day... I see its promotion by card-companies as a well-planned marketing strategy. I am not against it, either. If people want to express their love on a specific day, then so be it! If they want to celebrate their love all year-round, then let them!

Sepia Mutiny gives an interesting information. Apparently the perennial trouble-mongers, the Shiv Sainiks, want to marry off the couples that are seen together on V. day, if they are Hindu!. I could not contain my laughter for some time! When will they understand that Afghanistan should not be the model for our country? I am all for social health, but to have a healthy society, I think that it is necessary to have some minimum level of open-ness and personal freedom. (In the same article on Sepia Mutiny, there was another, more hilarious bit about some women's organizations working to thwart the sainiks in their attempts to disturb lovers, but let's not go there.)

Near my house, almost daily I see couples (I am sure they are not "just friends") standing and talking for hours together.. Once a policeman shooed a couple away, saying "ಏನು ನಿಮ್ಮ ಮನೆಯಲ್ಲಿ ಕಾಸು ಕೊಟ್ಟು ಕಾಲೇಜಿಗೆ ಕಳಿಸೋದು ಇದಕ್ಕೇನಾ?".. I had mixed feelings about this incident. On one hand, I felt that the kids did not need to be shooed away so rudely.. As long as they are not in the way of law and order, it is fine.. But, on the other hand, at 15-16 years of age, one usually does not find lasting loves. Gullible and insecure girls may become victims of malicious people, even if only emotionally. In that sense, it is good to have a sort of moral policing (how I hate the term!). At any rate, I am sure that the parents of the two kids would be grateful for the policeman, for giving them a good talking-to.

I think that a good way to solve this problem would be to accept dating as a fact of a teen's life (grrrr! To think that we returned from the US because we thought it was easier to bring up kids here!). Parents should keep track of who their children are talking to, and should set the limits for their kids, and most of all, believe in them. Yeah, yeah, I know this sounds too simple to be of any practical use, but we have to do something like this to keep our kids safe and our society healthy. Clandestine affairs have not done a lot of good to anyone.

I am worried about little biyadiya...

7 comments:

ABBA said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
parijata said...

"treat your 16-year-old as YOUR friend"
How true!
"प्राप्ते तु षोडशे वर्षे पुत्रं मित्रवदाचरेत् ।"
My little one is my friend even now. He is the dominant one, though... Usually, things get done according to his wishes, if what he wishes for are not dangerous or wrong.

I am still learning as a parent... Learning to set limits, to give in, to tell stories and just play with him.

Thanks for the comment.

parijata said...

@abba:
"treat your 16-year-old as YOUR friend"
How true!
"प्राप्ते तु षोडशे वर्षे पुत्रं मित्रवदाचरेत् ।"
My little one is my friend even now. He is the dominant one, though... Usually, things get done according to his wishes, if what he wishes for are not dangerous or wrong.

I am still learning as a parent... Learning to set limits, to give in, to tell stories and just play with him.

Thanks for the comment.

ABBA said...

yeahai!
I see that my comment has been deleted by the blog administrator. #@%^<*&=!x

Thanks for enlightening me with the Samskruta line. I was under the impression all along that it was an old English saying.

One of the major factors that made our Andy what he is today was his choice of peers and friends.

The following theory from Mr. Bhashyam (Mr. Bash Him as our Tony was fond of calling - and he of the REC, Trichy, IIT Madras, and IIM-A) might be of some interest.

Why are the IITs/IIMs great? Is it because of their great infrastructure, or their syllabi, or their super faculty?

None of these!!!

They are great only because of the quality of the students going in there. The cream of cream!

A student or for that matter even an adult learns the most from the peer group with whom he or she interacts day in and day out.

If you have played tennis or even pingpong or even chess you might observe that your level and quality of playing tends to match that of your opponent. If the opposite player is inferior to you, your own play tends to fall to his level and if your opponent is better than you, you would without your consciousness even, find that you try your level best to give him a good fight. ( I also read this same theory somewhere, may be in the blogosphere recently).

I am reminded of Shankar Acharya's सत्संगत्वॆ निस्संगत्वम्......


I hope Biyadiya comes to love mingling with people extrovertly because that is what will enable him to reach for the stars in whatever field he chooses.

parijata said...

@Abba,
Very, very sorry about that! I actually wanted to delete my own comment, which I thought needed some editing. But I accidentally removed yours. Here is the text, though.
"
'I am worried about Biyadiya'

The golden rule, I have always felt as a parent, is to be found in an old saying which says to treat your 16-year-old as YOUR friend ( Not his or her friend !).

However, I started half a friendship with Andy right from when he was 8.

The ideal situation, I would say, is when the kid feels confident enough to confide in you as a friend and NOT as parent.
"

Thanks for your wishes !

ABBA said...

No need to be sorry at all. I was under the impression the blogspotwallahs must have done it and was wondering why. Thats all.

Just happened to see this book today... Shobha De's book, "Speedpost." With the subtitle: Letters to my children about living, loving, caring and coping with the world.

It is dedicated to her 6 (yes, hers, I guess) children: "To Ranadip, Radhika, Aditya, Avantika, Arundhati and Anandita.... For a
life-sentence of hard but joyful labour."

The following page was also found interesting:
Acknowledgements
I love children. My own and even other people's. I started this as a millennium gift for my kids. At some point, I decided to embrace kids everywhere.... and a book happened.

There are no "off days" for parents. No vacations. No breaks. Even as I write these lines, I can hear one of my children summoning me urgently.

I have to stop. But not before thanking David ( must convince him to give parenting a shot), Karthika ( bless her, she likes not just my kids but Tuts, our boxer, too) and of course, my husband Dilip, who keeps the "wife" in me astonishingly alive."


to parijata:

(David is David Davidhar, head of Penguin India, I suppose).

No, I am yet to read the book and probably may not considering it may not be of much use to me personally.

Please do not bother to reply to this comment, unless you find it useful.

parijata said...

Abba,
Sorry for replying to you late. I did find your comment useful :) but I was busy with a few things, so I could not reply sooner.

I used to read Shobha De a lot when I was younger. It amazes me that a person as busy as her, had the time and patience to raise six kids!
"There are no "off days" for parents. No vacations. No breaks."
Very, very well put. Since my little one was born, I have not been able to spare 10-15 minutes even for prayer, let alone a vacation! Lack of "real entertainment" and the sleepless nights do not help, either. But all during this time, there is this satisfaction that I am doing what little I can, to take care of this little, infinitely lovable somebody who came out of me.

Uh, I did not want to be so maudlin and verbose, but well...