Concerning Kids – Can we do better than our parents?


Christian Life

Anna Gnatyshyna, CNE.news

Two children in Ukraine. Many young parents try to give more love to their children than they received from their parents. But is this possible? Photo EPA, Oleg Petrasyuk

Nowadays it is quite popular for my generation (born in the 1980s and 1990s) to talk about the difficulties from our childhood. As we become older, we encounter new ideas about raising kids. How does our past influence our present decisions?

Many of my friends who raise kids still remember how economically poor their families were. They talk about the difference of time periods and how it affects the upbringing of children.

Now, they do their best so that their kids can grow in a better financial context. The upbringing of the latter often involves more purchases, a rich choice of hobbies or sports, more toys, more books, more gadgets, more clothes. Somehow, adults want to compensate for something they lacked back in their own childhood.


Modern psychological trends also encourage up to bring up the past, our memories from when we were young and to evaluate our own parents. TikTok trends strengthens the idea that our upbringing is the cause of today’s problems, insecurities, and some behavioural patterns.

My best friend Victoria has Masters in Pedagogical Education, and she strives to give her kid the best. Can you guess how often she is discouraged that her child does not appreciate these efforts? Once Victoria said to me, “Oh, Anna I started to say to my kid that my childhood was more difficult, so she should be thankful for all she has now. And then I suddenly remembered that I heard this exact phrase from my mother when I was little. It seems, that I continue to do what my mom did to me.”

I understand that struggle. When I teach kids, I want to be a good teacher that uses the new methodology so that my teaching is effective. But it is impossible to be a perfect teacher, a perfect parent, a perfect grandmother. Kids are different, their time period is different and new for us, therefore, we will make mistakes as our parents, whether we want it or not.


I am sure that in 20 years' time, some of my students will remember me and criticise the way I used to teach, talk, to play with them, the manner in which I tried to discipline them; or they even may not agree to the values I was trying to teach them. Therefore, I need to embrace my inability to give them the best what they need. And nobody is asking me to be perfect today.

I enjoy being with kids and teaching them. I love hugging them and showing them my life values. I do my best taking into account my life at that moment and my health, my knowledge and my limits, my finances and my temper. Someday, they will surely become parents themselves, and that will magically change their perspective, as they will understand me.

I learnt this lesson the hard way, after I became psychologically and emotionally reconciled with my own parents. That gives me freedom not to stress out too much and do what I can in my work with kids today. And I feel so happy that my kids help me in this journey when they voice their needs, like “Sit with me more. Play with me. Look at my drawing”. We do this journey together.



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