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How do you correct your parents?

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One day, two teenage children of a middle-aged career woman told her, “Oh mum, we would really love it, if you would reduce the way you shout at us and everyone”. The woman was baffled that her shouting made her family sad. That day, she vowed to change. Yes, anybody who wants to change can change.

What wise children! It is not everything a parent does that pleases the child/children.
How can you air your grievances to your parents, guardians, elders and seniors at your place of work without being rude? I believe that children can correct their parents without being rude or ill-mannered.

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First, as a child, you ought to honour your parents. And one of the ways to honour your parents is not to get offended or gossip about them among your siblings, when they err. When the Bible says that you should honour your father or mother, so that it may be well with you and you may live long (Eph 6:2-3), it is a very powerful promise that every wise child should invoke into his/her life. It did not say that you should honour them only when they do things that please you.

When I was in my twenties, there was a day my father was very angry with me and he said things to me, which he shouldn’t have said. The words were so harsh, but I did not allow them to pain me. I listened to all he had to say without being rude. I then tried to calmly explain without disrespecting him.

For God’s sake, this is the man who with my mother sacrificed their sleep, their time and their money to raise me and send me to school. Why should I not remember all their labour of love, but instead dishonour them just because they shouted at me? A wise child should not tell the parents the “bitter” truth. Instead, he/she should tell his/her parents the whole truth in a non- “bitter” manner.

I am not saying that a father or mother cannot get their adolescent, teenage or adult child/children) angry. All I am saying is that a child should not be angry to the point of not respecting the parents.

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Instead, look for moments when they are not stressed, tired or angry. Then, with all the respect you can muster, tell them how you feel. A statement like, “Dad, I’d feel happier if you stopped drinking” is more respectful than “Dad, your drinking is bad”. Say the truth in love and with respect.

A lady who grew up in a home where the children told their parents the “bitter” truth ho ha got married to a man who grew up in a home where the children told their parents the “bitter” truth in a nice and respectful manner.

The father-in-law of this newly wedded lady said something to which the daughter-in-law replied, “Papa, it is a lie.” The father-in-law was furious and said, “Are you saying that I am telling lies?” And this caused a big family and extended family disagreement.

When her friend told her that she shouldn’t have said so, she kept wondering why she shouldn’t have said so. According to her, in the home she grew up, they used such words on their parents. She went on to say that when their father or mother is taking too long to say something, they would say, “Mummy fast forward” or “Daddy fast forward”.

This was the family culture in which she grew. Thank God that she had a friend who could advise her on the need to be wise in telling her parents or her parents-in-law not the “bitter” truth, but the whole truth in a nice way or not to say anything at all. Love you.

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