A SCHOOL principal and parent told nearly 30 other parents that differences between members of a family are due to each person's unique personality.
"Every person is a unique creation with a different and special personality. However, they can all share a value system common among them," said Mrs Margaret Joseph, chairperson of the Catholic Schools' Council.
The two-day parenting course conducted by Mrs Joseph at the CWS Building, S'pore. Oct 25-26, focussed on two areas of child development — freedom and acquiring right values.
"Perceptions are different," she said, "So there is a great deal of differences between members of the same family — hence differences exist between parents and children because each of them is a unique personality. Responsible parenthood is nurturing a value system within the context of each person's uniqueness."
"It is when parents impose their own personality on their children and do not recognise the different phases of moral and growth development in their children that conflicts arise in the house," she said.
Starting on the premises — every parent and every child is good, there is mutual love among them and that all parents want their children to acquire right values and all children to try to acquire them — the participants examined why, if these statements are true, adolescents appear to be a problematic group.
The course included a number of exercises and tests based on theories of renowned child psychologists like Koh I berg, Meyer and Keirsey.
These exercises were designed to help parents get a general idea of their own value systems and how to continue acquiring right values for themselves and for their children.
The programme also aimed at giving parents a general idea of what responsible parental control is and when parents should start giving children more freedom.
The participants also made a "case" study of an adolescent girl who had run away from her home.
They examined in detail what could have gone wrong in the early years of the child's development and what could be done for her at this stage.
Many parents said they greatly benefited by attending the course conducted by the Christian Family and Social Movement.
- The Catholic News, Sunday, Nove 16, 1986, page 4