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Parents’ Roles in the Self Discovery of Children

The basic platform of comparing reality with mentality is dependent on self-discovery. It is disheartening that many people have gone to the grave beyond without discovering who exactly they were. It will be a great loss if you also join them in this subtle but very costly loss. How will you live your life on another man’s manual? Tell me, how will you pass through the universe without a personal compass?

Dear friend, think about this all important question; Who are you? Can you boldly answer that question? If I give you a book, how many pages and books can you write in answer to this most important howbeit most neglected question on earth? Do you know that this is the question which answers cannot be copied? No, you cannot dub it. It is an open book question yet many live their lives up to 80, 90 years on earth without finding an answer to it. Selah.

The frightening thing today is, some people don’t know the importance of answering this question before embarking on the journey of life. Those that understand the importance are not aware of how to find the answers. Some are not even aware of the existence of this question. To address this issue of self-discovery, I shall be comparing our current mentality with expected reality. I will also explain the required steps and principles of self-discovery.

Current Mentality:

In most developing countries, the current mentality is to attach divinity to every success and failure experienced by humanity. Without understanding the role of self-discovery. When party A succeeds at a business and party B fails at same; our quick response is to thank God for A and pray for B. As if there are no reasons for the success and failure experienced by each party. This is so serious mentality that once you try to point out the likely reasons for the differences in the results, you are taken as proud and not ascribing success to God . What a pity! No wonder we find it difficult to understand self-discovery because of our poor mentality against reality.

Family Influence:

Our current mentality is rooted right from home, the family. Where parents not understanding the necessity of self-discovery decide the career and future of their own children. Such parents usually base their decisions on what they made or missed out of life. A doctor wants the child to study medicine, an engineer wants his child to study engineering and a lawyer does not feel fulfilled until at least one of his children studies law. An accountant wants his child to replace him, a proprietor wants his children to take over the school, in fact a successful pastor wants the children to come into ministry and take over the church from where he stopped.

Dear parents who did this to us, who gave us this mentality? Who told us we have not succeeded until our children take over our businesses? Where did we get this mentality that our children must follow in our footpaths? Who brought this upon us? Many parents have misled their children and destroyed great potentials with this backward mentality. Little wonder you see children going into music after studying law; you see graduates of medicine going into comedy and entertainment, all because the WILL of the ‘almighty parents’ must be accomplished.

Another painful reason some parents force their children to follow a particular career is because of what they missed in life. Some parents will tell you; I wanted to be a lawyer, doctor, all my life but was denied by eventualities. Therefore, my children must accomplish it. You now wonder, is it about the parents or the life of the children? Is it about your dreams, your expectations or the life of the child himself? Remember, the child is the owner of his life not you, let me quickly tell you this parents. If you are happier than your child on the day of his graduation; then you should ask whose dream has been accomplished. Yours or his?

The shameful aspect is when parents want their wards to become something just to compete with their neighbors, friends of family members. Some will even push their children to study a course just to prove a point to someone who made a statement some years back. You witness such from parents who after accomplishing such tasks come out to say some people said it is not possible, but today it is possible. I weep for this set of people because they lack understanding about importance of self-discovery.


Dr. Dayo Sobowale (MNSE, R. Engr, LL.B)

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