Oh no! Allan’s friend received a call from her elder daughter’s school, confirming her suspension, because she refused to stop her unacceptable behaviour.

Her dad was struggling emotionally all these weeks, ever since he has been called for so many times to her school to listen to all the unpleasant complaints about her daughter’s action. Which dad could really handle such situations calmly? Questions like, “Do you discipline your daughter? How is your relationship with your daughter? Are you aware of what sort of friends she mixes with? Do the 2 of you communicate often?….” were asked repeatedly on every meet-the-parent-session. It really felt like interrogation.

After meeting up with this man and his family personally that night, I noticed that this dad is a very understanding gentleman. If only they would have learn to communicate. He learnt the importance of good communication with children the hard way, so now he is spending as much time with his younger daughter as he can when he is not working.

The pride of a man, the pride of a father was totally gone when he decided to give up on his first child. He sent her to the Girls’ Home. No one told him to, no one suggested that, no one instigated in anyway, but the dad admitted defeat when the final call from her school confirming her suspension came.

He admitted that he was not able to communicate with her anymore, not able to control her behaviour, needless to say to change her behaviour, it would be like climbing Mount Everest, which only the experts are able to do it. And so he handed her beloved 14-year-old to the ‘experts’ to give her a ‘new life’. He is not really hoping for a metamorphosis, he understands the limits of how much the counsellor can do. The major part of the change must come from the girl herself.

There is a strong gush of sadness rushing towards me as Allan told me the story. I can feel the pain, the helplessness, the anguish, the embarrassment, the disappointment in the dad. At the same time, I can understand the resentment, the loneliness, the feeling of being unwanted and being misunderstood from the child’s point of view. She may also feel jealous and may had a grudge against her 4-year-old sister for ‘snatching’ her dad’s love away.

I had so many, so many of such friends and when they tell you their story, it brings tears to your eyes. The feeling of being castaway in them is very strong. They feel unloved in so many ways. Its very disheartening. Some felt they are being pushed to the limit and had so much hatred in their heart, they sought vengeance. Its very depressing.

Such a move was the last choice Allan’s friend had. He and his wife simply could not control her anymore. They grounded her so many times. But failed. They caned her, she builds up her grievance, her hatred towards this family. No parents would bear to see their children locked in the Girls’ Home. It is a Jail to the under-aged. Its the place where people from outside the gate see the girls as being condemned for life, who are rebellious, uncontrollable, hopeless and holding criminal records.

But the girls behind those gates are screaming, “why me? why me? why me? Why am I in such a family? Why my friends can have parents who love them? Why am I the one being caught? There are so many people doing what I am doing, why am I the unlucky one? Why am I not loved? Why, Why, Why?….”

The increasing number to such adversity is scaring me. In my post last week, I asked, “Are the kids of today harder to discipline? Or are the parents not getting involved enough with their child’s progress?”

I agree with the comments given, its the parents, who are so involved with their work. So who is the one really ‘teaching’ the kids about values of life? The maid, the care-giver, the teachers in the child care centre, the nanny, the grandparents.

What are the parents doing? Even Singapore see the need for the parents’ involvement in the upbringing of kids, by giving 3 months maternity leave for the mommy and 3 special days off from work for the daddy… But are these enough? Ultimately its how the daddy and mommy spend their time with the kids.

You can stay at home with the kids but read your newspapers, your child sits in-front of the TV, do you consider that as spending your time with them? How often do parents really listen to what the child have to say, instead of telling the child non-stop, “Listen, daddy and mommy is telling you this-and-that….” Communication is two-way, remember? When communication breaks down, relationship collapse. Agree?