Having children, training them
Children are gifts from the Almighty God. Hence, they attract spiritual and material blessings to the parent or parents in particular and the society in general. The attraction of these blessings, however, depends on commitment to them. If they are brought up responsibly, the blessings are irrevocable. But if the reverse is the case the result will be catastrophic. Family planning has several features. I am highlighting the main feature which has to do with the number of children parents can have in order to guarantee a peaceful and progressive society We must not shy away from delving into this issue because of its inherent dangers if not properly religiously and judiciously adhered to.
Everybody is a stakeholder in this issue, be it the individual, government, religious bodies, civil society groups, etc. The consequences of not embracing family planning can’t be over emphasised. They are retrogressive, parlous and detrimental to the individual in particular and the society in general. Our society is now a hotbed of social vices. These include armed robbery, kidnapping, rape, prostitution, fraud, hooliganism, etc. A thorough and unbiased research reveals that 90 per cent of these nefarious acts is perpetrated by un-plastered children who incidentally graduate into un-plastered men and women. Conversely, embracing family planning holistically will go a long way in ameliorating the ugly trend and the people will sleep with two eyes closed.
We are very good at imitation. We imitate foreigners in almost everything including indecent dressing. Why don’t we imitate this noble practice? In Europe and America where family planning is adhered to, life is well structured that any form of inconveniences is promptly and properly nipped in the bud. There, the richest couple are happy with one or two children while in our country, the poorest couple have eight to 13 children with little or no provision for their upkeep.
Imagine 10 to 15 people clustering in one room . Also in Europe and America, at a certain age of maturity say 18, one is required to live alone and fend for himself. This is worthy of emulation. But in this country of ours a man of 50 or above lives in his father’s house and struggles with him over the latter’s property. To cap it all, some, if not many, want their fathers to die in order to inherit their property which they will later dispose of without compunction.
It is neither a sin nor a crime for one to decide not to have a child. But it is a crime and a sin to have a child or children one can’t bring up responsibly. It is disheartening to observe that in spite of the present economic crunch, the poor in our country have the largest number of children they can’t take care for. These are the ones that are ever ready to devour anyone who advises them to be meticulous in the act of childbearing . E no concern you. na God de give children , they would remonstrate. This empty phraseology is no longer relevant. It concerns everyone because all suffer the effects of the havoc perpetrated by children, men and women who are products of gross negligence of family planning. It is also spurious for a couple to have many children in view of the reason that they have the wherewithal to cater for them. Tomorrow is pregnant is an age-long adage. If the inevitable happens, say the man who happens to be the breadwinner is called away and the woman can’t cope, what will be the fate of the children? You can provide the answer. I know some people will say God forbid but whether forbid or not we can’t rule out the possibility of experiencing such in life. There are, of course, other inevitable areas, such as loss of job, permanent incapacitation, etc.
We can’t embark on the all important journey to paradise with our children. If we drop this garment we are putting on and wear what many people call death, we forget that we once owned this or that, occupied this position or that. Like other belongings acquired here on earth we will leave children behind as we answer our Creator’s call. Bringing them up in the right manner will ease this journey and also guarantee happiness for us on this earth. Conversely, failure to do this amounts to abuse of God’s gift and instruction which, like other flagrant abuse of His word, attracts severe consequences which ,alas, we are experiencing today.
In conclusion, we all yearn for a crime-free society, a society where the government takes care of the people’s needs including jobs, a society where the people will be proud of their government and leaders and a society the people will defend anytime. It is hoped that our yearnings will see the light of day if we willingly and holistically adjust our lives to this laudable project.
Udodilim Ijeoma writes from Sapele, Delta State