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What I would NOT have wanted to hear from my parents when I was a child

For many people, childhood is the most beautiful stage of life. Even for those who went through difficult times, who were children in troubled and sad times.
Children have the ability to rejoice when adults find no reason to rejoice. Happy memories of that time have been with us all my life.
Every year, on November 20, UNICEF celebrates International International Day of the Rights of the Child to mark the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. I read it on this occasion,  and I was surprised that there are such simple, clear, basic provisions that all adults in this world should think for themselves and apply. But reality shows that this is not the case at all.

Many children around the world do not have access to food, drinking water, health care or education. In many parts of the world, children are forced to work or participate in armed conflict, are exploited and abused. There are children all over the world who do not have the right to an opinion, do not have the freedom to speak their mother tongue and do not have the freedom to express their religious values.

It seems that all the major decisions of adults take into account anything but the rights of their children.

The plight of millions of children around the world makes November 20 even more important and reminds us that the fight for their rights should be a constant and tireless one worldwide.
Certainly my parents have never heard of a Convention on the Rights of the Child. In fact, I don’t think most parents know that this convention exists. And in the context of this Convention, when I think of my childhood, I discover that there are some things that I would have liked my parents not to tell me. Looking at them now, after many years, I realize that the feeling of injustice that I felt, either for myself or for others, was perfectly justified.

“You’re not allowed! Because that’s what I say and I ended the discussion! ”

Children, like adults, need arguments.

Surely you have noticed that a child can launch an infinite string of “Whys” and is not satisfied until he receives an answer that clarifies his confusion. I had a deep sense of injustice when my father told me that I was not allowed to do anything, without bothering to tell me why. His point of view was enough for him, and I didn’t even have the right to know the reasons behind the decision. Surely I would have understood and accepted the decision more easily if he had explained to me, in my understanding, why the answer is no.

“Don’t play with her! She’s a gypsy and she’s going to steal your toys. “

It is sad when a child notices the injustice, and the adults fail to do so. My parents often reminded me of who I am and who I am not allowed to play with, and their opinions were based on preconceived appearances and ideas that, unfortunately, still exist today for many. Of course, there was also the classic “If you’re not good, I’ll give you to the gypsies”, which many adults today have heard in childhood.

I can only imagine the immense sadness of rejected, isolated and offended children based solely on their ethnicity. Children who had done nothing wrong, but who had already received a label and were treated as such not necessarily by other children but by adults.

“Up to the age of 18, do what I say!”

I am convinced that my parents did everything they knew best and gave me absolutely everything they could. In their day there were no parenting books, children were not entitled to too many opinions and the decisions their parents made were the letter of the law. As a teenager, when I began to rebel against the “dictatorial” system I felt I had in my family, I often heard from my father that I was forced to listen to him until I was 18, whether it suited me or not. . Of course, all he could do was get more dissatisfaction from me. In such situations, I felt that I was not being listened to, that I did not have the right to express my point of view, and that my opinions did not matter.

Children feel when they are wronged, even if they do not necessarily know how to express it.

It is important to learn from our parents’ mistakes and not to repeat them. It is just as important to teach our children that they have a say, that they are listened to, and that their opinions matter. We need to teach them that all children are equal and that all children have rights that all adults are obliged to respect. A better generation does not appear overnight, but develops from childhood.

What I would NOT have wanted to hear from my parents when I was a child

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