It breaks my heart to see or hear about friends that I grew up with struggling so much in life. Friends that were more like family, who unfortunately fell into the patterns of poverty and drug abuse that were around us as children.
It goes without question…parents always say they want a better life for their children, but there comes a point where that needs to be demonstrated, lived out as an example. Children are certainly very creative on their own, but they learn by example. How can a parent justify wanting a better life for their children when they themselves are living a life dictated by their own devices? If you, as a parent, a child’s guide and mentor, cannot rise above your situation, then how can the children believe they can? It is a selfish thing then to hope your children can rise above on their own; it is negligence of your duty.
I am not a parent, so I cannot claim to know how difficult parenting is. I was, however, a child growing up in an unfortunate situation and had others growing up alongside me. I can testify to what made the difference between my life and the other children’s lives to date. It was a single parent, just one that made that difference. One that had the courage to get out of that situation for good.
Once outside, the world opens up for children. There are new things to aspire to. And most importantly, the belief that they in fact do deserve it. That’s the kicker…when the parent can demonstrate a better life, so too can the children follow.