Wednesday April 25, 2018

Do Parents have different Standards and Expectations from Sons and Daughters?

There exists a double standard in dealing with sons and daughters

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A family (representational image), Pixabay
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– by Athina Ann Thomas

Jan 16, 2017: All parents want their children to do well in life. They even dream and plan for their children before their birth. They want the best for their children. But when it comes to girls and boys, do parents have different hopes and standards? Yes, they do!

Most parents are more concerned about their son’s education than for their daughter’s. It is sad to see that some parents though educated, subconsciously think that the daughter will get married and leave while the son will be there for them.

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Sons are considered as a blessing, the person who will carry forward the legacy of the family. At some parts of the country, it is even said that “educating a daughter is like watering a plant sowed in someone else’s garden.”

There exists a double standard in dealing with sons and daughters. Girls are trained to be homemakers and brought up with a mentality that their main purpose in life is to take care of a husband and two children.

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On the other hand, sons are encouraged to be outgoing, to take part in sports and given all the liberties that girls are generally deprived of. They are brought up with a mentality that in the future they will be earning a living for their family.

It’s not that these families do not educate their daughters, they do but their focus is more on the boys. They are not bothered for their daughter as much as the son. The saddest part is that even educated families do this. They are willing to spend a good part of the family resources on the son’s career building but are not willing to do the same for their daughter, but they are willing to spend on the daughter’s marriage.

In many countries including ours, higher education is a privilege of the boys. Parents are unwilling to send their daughters to higher classes because they are physically mature. There exists an unexplainable fear that danger lurks behind them.

Even now parents do not appreciate their daughters freely mingling with classmates especially students of the opposite sex. There is a limitation in freedom of speech and freedom of expression. There is fear that if a girl is given freedom she may revolt and go against traditional beliefs and customs of the society in which first comes marriage to a person of her own choice.

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No matter how educated a person is- these are some customs that the society follows since time immemorial. Thus I conclude by saying that even in the twenty-first-century parents do have different hopes and expectations from sons and daughters. 

Centre for Social Action (CSA) is the development wing of Christ University. Set up in 1999, it believes in strengthening student community with a view to enabling positive changes in the society. Athina Ann Thomas is a volunteer at the organisation.

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Having kids or not, life satisfaction remain same

Parents with or without children are just two sides of the same coin: non-parents are not 'failed' parents and parents are not 'failed' non-parents, says a study

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Having or not having kids doesn't affect life satisfaction. VOA

Parents with or without children are just two sides of the same coin: non-parents are not ‘failed’ parents and parents are not ‘failed’ non-parents, says a study.

According to researchers, factors such as higher educational attainment, higher income, better health and religiosity enhance life satisfaction and they found that parents and non-parents have similar levels of life satisfaction.

“It is simply a mistake to presume that people with children have better lives,” said Angus Deaton, the Dwight D. Eisenhower professor of economics and international affairs at Princeton University.

Having kids doesn’t increase life satisfaction. Twitter

“Some people like oranges, and some like apples, and we do not think that orange eaters should have better or worse lives than apple eaters,” he added.

However, adults with children at home experience more emotional highs and lows than those without children at home, said the study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Researchers examined data from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index – a survey of 1.8 million Americans who evaluated their lives and reported daily emotional experiences between 2008 and 2012. The researchers focused on the 34-46 age group.

They found that all emotions – happiness, smile, enjoyment, worry, stress and anger – were markedly higher among those who have children at home. “Life evaluation is not the same as experienced emotions, such as happiness, enjoyment, sadness, worry or stress,” said Deaton.

Also Read: New Toys Help Cultivate Emotional Intelligence in Children

“The results show that, no matter what else is taken into account, parents experience more of all of these than non-parents. There are good days and bad, ups and downs,” he added.

For countries like India, where there is strong social pressure to become parents, Deaton and Stone say their argument does not apply. In such countries, people may have children even when it does not increase their own life evaluation, though it may increase that of their parents or communities, said the study. “The evidence for those countries does indeed show that parents have lower life evaluations, on average,” the study said. IANS