Sitting on the patio on a clear evening, I was enthralled by the beauty—and mystery— of the stars that flooded my sight. Seeing the vastness of the universe I came to deduce that there is more to life than all I can possibly perceive. Such contemplation was cut off however by the sight of a man—who was once ubiquitous in our neighborhood— guiding his excited children on what seems to be those rare moments where they will be spending time with each other, sans (unfortunately) the mother.
It’s been few years since they (father and mother) have been separated, and despite all their efforts to restore what has been, I reckon that theirs will never be. I have come to pity their children; many times as I pass by I would inadvertently hear queries about their father. “Where’s Papa? When’s he coming back? Why he’s not sleeping here anymore? When he’s going to visit us?” And the mother would dodge the question by telling them to be quiet.
Having a family myself I know what it’s like to have conflict with ones’ partner. Oftentimes, the ensuing pain becomes unbearable that you want to break free; but then you realize that when you have children it should never be an option; you find to love them so much that you don’t want them to suffer the things, at their tender age, they do not deserve; and so you have to gamble your sanity for their sake. A father has a profound meaning to a child as well as the mother; the absence of either will affect their emotional development and stability.
Many times I have witnessed what becomes of a child when either of the parents has gone. A father for instance, to a child’s perception, embodies firmness and discipline, passiveness and authority, strength and security—despite his seeming indifference. A mother on the other hand portrays love, tenderness, care, pampering, calm and attention. I find essential that such reciprocal characteristics of both the mother and the father important in the emotional development of a child; in the absence of either problem may arise as the child grows up. In my neighborhood I see a common pattern to this effect, and sadly, it has become an unfortunate trend of our present time.
The presence of both parents during the early stages of a child’s growth is important for his/her well-being. Though it is inevitable not to have conflict with our partner, let us keep in mind the impact it would have on our children when we decide to part ways. Of course, it is not good either if they see us exchanging belligerent responses—they will adopt it as right and convey such in their dealing with others: a bully is one of such derivative. As much as possible, when clashes are inevitable, we should make an effort to make it benign; we should do our best, despite the pain, to be a good example and reliable figures for our children—lest we don’t care for them.
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