It must be nice being a teen nowadays. You can practically do anything you want and get away with it. If you think am kidding watch the news lately. Watch as high school girls are found with marijuana in their pubes. Watch as five hundred kids between the age of 12-18 are busted having an orgy and doing drugs. Five bloody hundred!!
What the hell is happening. Back when I was a kid there were a few ‘rotten tomatoes’ but never to this proportions! Who do we blame because humans do love a good blame game? I hear talks of the parents are at fault, the women empowerment movement is at fault the teachers are at fault. And each group have facts and of course valid reasons for each blame. But if we are going to blame someone, let us blame the society as a whole.
We should declare a national day of mourning for our little ones. But seriously what can be done. I think society needs to play a role in mitigating this tragedy.
I have come up with 5 things that can lessen this tragedy
- Bring back the nosy neighbor
I remember back in high school, in form one, I decided to talk to this guy who was in Nairobi school. I wanted to know if a boy school is any different from a girls school and if he was being bullied. Another friend of mine had told me that he had been given a black basin in the middle of the day and told to fill it with darkness. People can be so mean. So you see why I wanted to compare notes. I am a curious individual and my curiosity sometimes lands me in trouble
This neighbor of ours happened to pass by when I was chatting with said boy. We say hi as she passed and thought nothing of it.
So when I get home ten minutes later the first question my mum asks, “nani huyo mlikua nayeye”.
I was completely floored. This neighbor was probably the flash. How could she relay this type of news that fast. Unfortunately or fortunately this guy was not even my type ( apparently I had a type, go figure) and I thought myself as too young for such things. The naivety. Now I see 12 year olds who feel they are too grown up. So not cool.
The nosy neighbor should be reintroduced in our society, lets stop the “my kid my way” mindset.
Check what they are watching
If you grew up in the nineties you probably hated that lady who came on TV with “This program is age restricted…” anything with kissing scenes was above 13. Now we are watching game of thrones with our 8 year olds. Not to mention the Jamaican dance hall videos.
I would probably burn these bloody cds if I had a kid. They can watch it somewhere else but not my house.
Do you know how hard it was to get porn back in the day. People had to struggle to get them. To hide them in brown bags and hide them where the sun don’t shine. I used to see these young adults try to hide them and would laugh my head off. Of course we knew it was porn. We had accidentally watched one thinking it was a Nigerian movie. The horror!.Now they are available every where. Take the phone of any 14 year old you know and look at their browsing history and see what I mean. Make it your business to know what these kids are watching.
3. Know who they are hanging out with.
We need to know who our children’s friends are. Take time to know their classmates their rivals their age mates. Let these friends come to your house and subject them to the third degree if you must. Be that mom or dad who is in her sons business. Get to know the parents of these kids. This way it will be hard for them to lie about going for kesha or those other lies they tell.
4. Give them a Strong foundation
It is always good to have your children grow up with some principles. Give your kids something to build on. Stand for something and let them follow your example and stand for something before they fall for anything. Take them to church or mosques in their formative years. Trust me there are some values that can only be taught in a spiritual institution. Of course pay attention to what they are being taught here.
Tell stories to your kids, moral stories of Sungura mjanja and other African folklore. Our folklore were parked with lessons that kids nowadays badly need. They need to deal with peer pressure and fitting in. They should know how to embrace their differences. They can only dare to be different if they have a strong foundation.
5. Have the sex talk
The best thing I heard about this story is that these kids had condoms. I am glad someone talked to them about the beauty of being prepared. They are having sex too young so you better have the talk as soon as possible. Teachers should have the talk with them, parents as well as religious leaders. Let them know that if they have to have sex they need to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancies and STIs.
The society has to be tasked with raising our children. That is how African culture dictated. The child belongs to the village! If you live in a state where you don’t care about so and so’s kid then there is a problem.
Society in this sense is the teachers, it is that neighborhood snitch who knows every ones parents the churches and mosques the teachers in class as well as the government. We can’t afford to bury our heads in the sand and hope that this goes away.
Let’s stop the blame game and help these kids.