Actress Kemi Afolabi Adesipe showed off her newborn daughter Nadia to her Instagram followers. Nadia was born to Kemi Afolabi and husband Wale Adesipe 41 days ago. Kemi shared photos of her child and went on to offer up prayers for the newborn. See below. The post Actress […]
Last night I was with a very good and long time friend whom I have not seen for about two years. In the cause of our discussion, he said “seven students have committed suicide so far in the University of Benin because of depression but the truth is that depression is alien to the Nigerian students.”
We both graduated from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-ife and we knew how difficult that school was but yet nobody during our time in that school committed suicide or got depressed. The question would be – How did we do it?
The recent trend of students getting depressed that they feel the only way to put an end to it is through suicide boils down to several factors of which parenting patterns, School authorities and government take a larger part of the blame.
From the 90s downwards, parents encouraged children to indulge more in outdoor activities than indoors. Children would go out and mingle with other kids on their streets and locality. Indoor activities were boring. Those born in that era grew up to become streetwise. Children created things out of the little resources they had and without seeing getting an insight from tutorials on YouTube (These were not available). They were so busy with outdoors activities, school work and friends that depression was never a part of their DNA.
Today, children are locked indoors and given games to keep them company. The only time they can interact with other children is at school. A lot of parents have outsourced their children to social media. They buy expensive phones for their Children just to let other parents see them as kids from rich families. Most times, parents are so busy with work and hustling for money that they do not observe mood swings of their kids. In a Fathers Day event held in a church about two weeks ago, it was a sad thing when parents knew nothing about their kids in a game “Knowing Your Kids”.
These children have grown up with bottled feelings for a long time and they have no one to share with because the only friends they have are virtual in nature. The students committing suicides are mainly those from rich homes and average families whose parents believe that other Children are not good enough for theirs.
Bad parenting has resulted in turning grown up kids to chickens.
The second factor is the school authorities who accept students who are not matured enough to take care of themselves. In our universities, the students are so young that you will be surprised. A 16 year old is already a sophomore in the university because his or her parents are competing with their neighbors or friends. You see parents accompany a university student to school. When you see these students, all you will observe is traces of immaturity and fear. The appropriate age for entry into the university is 18 years but due to corruption you will see 16 year old students in the university. How will such a student whose parents have made them see failure of a course as the end of their dreams?
The government has further aggravated the problem because of lack of focus. The Education Ministry is doing nothing. A lot of schools should be shut and licensed revoked. One of the requirements for operating a school should be a playing field for outdoor activities. More than 80% of private schools do not engage in outdoor activities because they do not have fields. And some that has these fields prefer not to use it for outdoor activities but for the purpose of landscaping.
In the past, schools held inter-house sports where other schools are invited which has helped to foster friendships but today, it is only a handful of schools that still try to do things like that. Inter-house sport is a thing of the past in public schools. The government should bring back these games.
Failure is not the end of life. Most of the successful people we see around started from failures. Parents should give their children the opportunity to mingle with others, choose their friends etc. You can guide them but never force them. Help them to grow, let them make their own mistakes and decisions. Stop giving them a pampered and programmed life.
The government and school authorities should the needful. My suggestion is that Universities should allow students who are 18 years and after an interview to check their outward appearance and maturity levels.