Would You Raise Your Children The Same Way You Were Raised?

May 16, 2019

If you had to explain Nigerian parenting styles, chances are the descriptions around civilian dictators, passive-aggression champions and flogging samurais would probably make the cut.

Now I can’t think of  any one scenario where these features would be ideal, least of all when young and highly impressionable children are thrown into the mix, but somehow, these have been part and parcel of the Nigerian parenting handbook for years and years

Perhaps because Nigerian children have always turned out okay, or okay to the extent where we aren’t publicly losing our shit in public on a daily; but it just might appear that these styles work… or do they?

To know where hearts stand in the matter of Nigerian parenting styles, we asked five people if they would continue where their parents left off in raising children of their own.
     

“I have to say the strongest, most non-negotiable no” – Femi

I don’t want to outrightly say God forbid because there is a chance my parents get wind of this and call a family meeting on my head, but I have to say the strongest, most non-negotiable ‘no’ there is to that question.

Growing up, the minute my father came in through the door, in fact, the second we heard the double-beep honk that marked his arrival home, my siblings and I would use all of .2 seconds to turn off the television, clean up every sign that we were in the living room and make our way to our rooms. The fear was so real, I don’t recall ever sitting down with him to chat, beyond asking for school fees here and some additional money for expenses there. Mind you, these requests only happened when my mother absolutely refused to be the conduit between children and father. Of course, as I’ve gotten older, attempts have been made to forcibly create a relationship, but it’s too little, too late. I’m overly polite at best and completely uninterested in the conversation most times.

When I have children, best believe my primary goal is being their best friend, someone they can confide in and laugh with. Not someone who takes pride in children being unable to look him in the eye for the smallest requests.

“I would ask my parents to write a book” – Dorothy

I grew up in the most unconventional Nigerian home there ever was. This may have had a part to play with my mother being half-Sierra Leonian but it was the most loving, nurturing home there ever was. Rather than leaving the raising of their children to schools and parental hands alone, our home was always filled with trusted family and friends. We were always encouraged to ask questions, speak up against anything we considered wrong and were granted social and freedom at relatively young ages. If possible, I would ask my parents to write a book on how they managed to be so liberal as patients while somehow raising the most well rounded children, if I do say so myself.

“There are actually a number of places my parents got it wrong.” -Nsikan

The only thing I would take away from the way my parents raised me was how strict they were with religion. You would think they were on the left and right hands of Jesus while he was on the cross. No songs, clothings, television programs or events not sanctioned holy in their heads were allowed while I was growing up. And if you were the one responsible for somehow bringing the devil into the home, oh boy, you might actually prefer death. Honestly, I don’t like remembering those days too much.

There are actually a number of places my parents got it wrong, but this religion thing, definitely the first place I’d note.

“My mom has the whole thing down to a science” – Husseinah

I grew up with my mom, who can I add is an absolute rockstar. She single handedly raised strong headed twin girls, with only the barest of outside help. She taught us to cook, change tyres, haul a jerry can of petrol, man, if anyone needs some training on self-sufficiency, look no further than my mother. If  there was something I could change about her parenting style, I can’t think of it. She has the whole thing down to a science, I’ll forever be indebted to her. – Victor

“I won’t be making their mistakes” – Victor

I didn’t grow up with my parents. I was one of those children that attended primary and secondary boarding schools. They’ve been relative strangers my whole life. Though this had more to do with them living in a different state from where my schools were. It has made it virtually impossible to have any relationship short of perfunctory checking in and birthday wishes.

I have a child now, perfectly precious and just learning to walk. I’m considering homeschooling him, I want to spend every waking moment with him. My obsession with my child makes things a little hard from their perspective, but I guess things happen like that sometimes. I won’t be making their mistakes however.

Boyin Plumptre

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

October 16, 2019

If you check the dictionary for the meaning of ‘stress‘, you might not see the word Lagos, but anyone who has spent more than an hour inside this particular state, knows that the only description that should be there is ‘Lagos’. Traffic o, expenses o, trailers o, even the sun in Lagos has plans to […]

August 17, 2018

A lot of people think going to a private university in Nigeria is an easier path to higher education, but it’s really not. While the private university struggles might be different from public universities, they are just as annoying. Look at these. When people tell me how ‘lucky’ I am to be going to a […]

Watch

Now on Zikoko

April 18, 2021

The subject of today’s Man Like is Timileyin, a project and facilities manager. He talks about his father’s imprint on his character, how his parents’ marriage guides his approach to romantic relationships and why crying is therapeutic. When did you realise you were a man? Every time I open an episode of ‘Man Like‘ and […]

April 17, 2021

Sex Life is an anonymous Zikoko weekly series that explores the pleasures, frustrations and excitement of sex in the lives of Nigerians. The subject of this week’s Sex Life is a 29-year-old gay man whose sexual addiction ruined his three-year relationship. He talks about how the end of his relationship made him realise he has […]

Recommended Quizzes

November 12, 2019

Are you a single pringle, stuck in a complicated situationship or happily married to the love of your life? This quiz is here to guess your current relationship status, and as you know, Zikoko quizzes are incredibly accurate (don’t quote us). So, give a shot:

November 11, 2019

Today, we are going to be using your taste in music to determine how good you actually are in bed. All you need to do is create the ultimate Nigerian hit — from the lead artist to the producer — and we’ll tell you if all your partners leave satisfied, or if you are just […]

October 29, 2019

We are going to be attempting to guess when you’ll marry based on your favourite Nigerian foods. What does your fave swallow have to do with when you’ll tie the knot? Please, don’t ask complicated questions. This quiz is rigorous and accurate (don’t quote us), so just take it already. QUIZ: Why Do You Have […]

More from Citizen

April 2, 2021

Today’s subject on Abroad Life started her process to leave Nigeria for the USA for school in 2017 and didn’t leave until two months ago. She talks about how money, COVID and visa problems delayed her travel plans. She also talks about arriving in the USA in the middle of a polar vortex and having […]

March 22, 2021

Victor Emmanuel is a queer Nigerian YouTuber with simple demands: He wants the Nigerian Government to repeal the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act (SSMPA). On March 20, 2021, Victor published a video on Twitter, explaining the reason for his decision. He made it clear that he was going on a hunger strike until the SSMPA […]

Watch

Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.
X