Factors That Influence Personal Development

Table of Contents

Abstract

Growing up is perhaps one of the hardest things in the life of any child today. The changing family settings have hurt the lives of many children. The settings that parents are subjecting their children in a bid to enhance their development affect the identity and personality of the children in a great way. Today unlike in the past, the family has disintegrated and single parents are now raising most children.

Even in the case where both parents are available, they are in most cases too busy to give any personalized attention to their children. This leaves the role of giving primary care to nannies whose main aim is not in the development of the child but on what they earn at the end of the day. This robs the child of the personalized love that is supposed to come from a parent. This research paper looks at the role played by parents, school, and religion in influencing the identity and personality of a child.

Introduction

Growing up is perhaps one of the hardest things in the life of any child today. The changing family settings have hurt the lives of many children. The settings that parents are subjecting their children in a bid to enhance their development affect the identity and personality of the children in a great way. Today unlike in the past, the family has disintegrated and single parents are now raising most children. Even in the case where both parents are available, they are in most cases too busy to give any personalized attention to their children. This leaves the role of giving primary care to nannies whose main aim is not in the development of the child but on what they earn at the end of the day.

This robs the child of the personalized love that is supposed to come from a parent. In turn, a child grows up feeling unwanted and may even get into the bad company to fill the “void” in their heart. In short, what today’s children are trying to do is to piece together an identity out of forgotten basic roots. (Boeree, 2006)

Role of parents in influencing the development

My personal development was filled with twists and turns. Though both my parents raised me, I will be lying if I say that life was easy for me as a child. Both my parents were career people. This meant that the only time I saw them was on Sunday. Even then, they were too tired to give any attention to me. In their place, we had a nanny who took care of us both during the day and at night. We had a good rapport with the nanny since we knew we could be cheeky around her without the fear of being reprimanded.

Even though the things that money can buy were not a problem in our house, I still craved my parent’s love. I still remember moments when I had to beg my father to accompany me to prize-giving days. These attempts took great courage on my part since my father was a great disciplinarian and we all feared him. This made me feel that I was an unwanted child and that I must have been born as a mistake. This was also the general feeling among my four siblings. This made us children close since we felt that we were fighting a common enemy and that was our parents. (Boeree, 2006)

The other people who played a great role in my personal development were my extended family. Our paternal grandfather stayed with us and I had a chance to learn a lot from him. From my grandfather, I learned the history of our community among other things that I have never had the opportunity to learn from anywhere else. My parents owned a big upcountry house and that was where all of us grew up. This provided us with a good environment where we could grow up.

However, our parents did not allow us to venture outside the house to play with our friends. This made me feel like a caged animal and I could not wait to attain my freedom. This made the only people I could look upon be our nanny and my grandfather. Both of them taught me how to live an upright life that was free of corruption from outside influence. Therefore, I can confidently say that my grandfather and my nanny are the people whom I looked up to as my role models. (Feldman, 2007)

My physical development during my early developmental years can be described to have been average. Though I struggled with a weight problem at first, things got back to normal as I was growing up. During my middle and adolescence years, I did not have many friends since no one was allowed to come to our house. This made me live a somewhat isolated life. Although this aspect made me avoid the often-negative influence brought about by friends, I suffered low self-esteem since I felt that I could not measure up to anyone.

This also made me evade the trap of peer pressure that comes with friends. Most of the time, I felt that people did not understand me and longed for someone to love me. This made me anticipate the end of school days to get in the comfort of the nanny and my grandfather. (Clarke, & Justice, 2010)

Role of school in influencing the development

I cannot confidently say that school was fun for me. I can recall very well the first day I reported to the school. One thing that has always been a delicacy in my family is fish. During that first day in school, my nanny had packed for me a chunk of fish for my lunch. During the whole morning, I could not wait for the opportunity to devour my lunch. When the moment came, I did this with pleasure only to realize that all the other kids were looking at me in a queer manner.

One of the girls sitting next to me dared to say that I ate “funny things”. Many years down the line, I can recall precisely how I stood up and threw my favorite fish in the nearest dustbin. The embarrassment I felt having a score of young boys and girls laughing at me has made me detest fish up to date. Had it not have been the tough stance taken by my parents, I would have quit school altogether. This made me view school as a means of punishment from my parents. (Klamon, 2007)

When I joined high school, my parents made me join a boarding school where I stayed most of the year. My parents highly believed that development and riches came with education. Most of the things I was taught in high school contradicted what my grandfather had taught me. Where I had been taught how to be egalitarian at home, school taught me how to compete. In school, I was also taught how to speak up for my rights something absent at home where my folks were the final authority. At school, I was an exceptionally bright child. However, when I learned to speak for myself and realized that the world had been sitting on me, I desired to sit on top of the world.

This made my grades fall in school. This also made me be at loggerheads with my teachers and parents. My parents found me to be impossible to deal with, while my parents said that I had been corrupted by a foreign culture. My desire to rule the world and retaliate for the injustices that I felt had been meted on me made me lose my innocence and instead became a bully in school. This put me into a constant fight with my teachers. (Clarke, & Justice, 2010)

Role of religion in influencing religion

Religion plays a key role in the life of a person and I was not an exception to that rule. My parents were not overly religious people and therefore they did not stress the importance of being religious. However as I grew up, I met friends who introduced me to religion. I realized that I needed to look cup to a supreme being who was more loving and caring than my parents and friends had been. Religion also taught me what was right and wrong and what I needed to do to live an upright life. Religion especially erased the many traumatic challenges that I had gone through as a young person. My parents were constantly fighting something that affected me psychologically.

This caused me to be depressed and often I had suicidal thoughts. The only thing that I miss from my childhood is the company I had with my grandfather who has since died and our nanny who was relieved of her duties when we became of age. (Feldman, 2007)

Conclusion

The changing family dynamics negatively affect children. Unlike in the past, today’s family has disintegrated causing untaught suffering to children untaught. Most parents do not have time for their kids making them look for love from elsewhere. Unlike in the past when children would look up to their parents as role models, today’s youth looks up to the mass media for role models. This is because the people on T.V look more real than the other people around us. Unfortunately, this is not the case and many young people end up disillusioned upon realizing the truth. Parents and society as a whole have a sacred duty to ensure that they bring up children in the right way since this will influence their identity and personality even as adults.

Reference List

Boeree, C.G. (2006) “Erik Erickson. Web.

Clarke, E. G., & Justice, E.M. (2010) Identity Development- Aspects of Development, Net Industries. Web.

Feldman, R.S. (2007). Child Development, Fourth Ed. IL: Prentice Hall.

Klamon, M. G. (2007). Study Guide: Child Development, Fourth Ed. IL: Prentice Hall.

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