There are lots of ways to get information on how to be a good parent these days and whether by nature or by nurture we are capable of doing this phenomenal job is forever debatable but to have parents that have set some practical rules and regulations in place is an agreed upon necessity. So whilst we were given the general instructions for having manners that was about it. There was no family get togethers with any aunts and uncles, cousins barely existed in our world. The general attitude of people at that time was that anyone gave a hand into contributing to teaching youngsters proper conduct - the teacher, policeman, neighbour - old uncle Tom Cobbly and all!! as the song goes!!
As I grew up I never, ever had any yen whatsoever to have a family, the idea was quite foreign to me and was the furthest thing from my mind.
When eventually I met the person to whom I would get married, we would visit his brother and family and their children, if anything, I they were like annoying aliens. So when I found that I was pregnant the next step was to get married, a necessesity under the circumstances, and before long I had three children under three years of age to cope with and the husband still leading a bachelor life. It was all left to me - to see to it that the rent was paid, the gas and electricty, coal - you name it ! and on top of that the children to tend to and bring up.
At that time I had no opinions of my own, strange to think of now. I could always see both sides of any subject and I realise now because I had not gained enough knowledge in order to do that. However, things changed. As I began to voice my opinions I was met with sharp reactions and if I did not agree with his views I would get a thump and this grew and grew till he became a very violent man.
I maintained a very steady and rather cold hand with my children and kept to the saying ” spare the rod and spoil the child” which I had taken very literally. It is not till later years that I recognised my error and phoned each of my children in turn and with many tears to ask them to forgive me for being so harsh and unkind. I know we can all make mistakes but these days there are methods in place to prevent some of these awful mishaps that can be vent upon our precious jewels and help those in need to have some help and guidance.
Thankfully I have been able to witness the loving kindness that my daughters have bestowed to their offspring and have enjoyed the company of my family as never before.