Bridging the gap between parents and children

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Yinka Olatunbosun

A UK-based Nigerian author, Yetunde Adesile recently visited Nigeria to promote her literary offering, “The Youth Evolution.’’ Published in 2015, the book is one of the most sought-after contemporary inspirational books in many schools in the UK.

Born out of Adesile’s personal relationship with young people as a life coach and youth pastor, Adesile realised that there had been a lingering gap between many parents and their children occasioned by time constraints, generational differences and lack of insight into the minds of young people.

Hence, Adesile thought of this new approach to focusing the next generation on success. For strange reasons, many parents become helpless when their children exhibit traits that are usually associated with peer pressure. Some parents also create a mental picture of what their children should become. Irrespective of the desires of every parent, most parents want what is good for their children but the approach in achieving this is where the problem usually lies.

‘’it is my first published book,’’ she began as she surveyed the journalists who sat around her table under the lush trees beside Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja. “I particularly chose this one because that is where my heart lies for now. The interest in youths actually started a while back. If I look at most of the voluntary work that I have done in the church and the community, it is always with the young people. It is not something I developed but it is something I inherited from my parents who were both sponsoring people to school,’’ she said.

Adesile examined all the major influencers in the life of a child and identified the parents as leading influencers.

“Now there are lots of distractions like the social media. Music has not been quite the way it used to be. So, keeping children in church and focusing on God becomes more of a challenge because of all the other distractions. They also ask questions that I wouldn’t ask at their age,’’ she explained.

When asked why she opted to put all her ideas for better youths in a book, she noted that many parents are still not internet savvy. She could have put the thoughts in a blog or a Youtube video, but the actual targets are likely to miss them. Meanwhile, young people with busy parents have also found the book very useful according to the feedback that opens the book.

“Young people feel very privileged to have people like me in the community and it is why I have been nominated for several awards in the UK. I genuinely want youth people to succeed because there is a lot of crime and there are gangsters who are clueless. It is not necessarily their fault since they don’t have that support or the people with the knowledge around them to guide or shape them and to give them a better option in life,’ she said.

The author added that the book discusses the challenges of growing up; the psychological development of a child and how music and television content have changed over time.

“A lot of parents just assume that their child is going to a good school so therefore he is doing well. But who are their friends? Some parents don’t even take time to find out. Television and pop stars are major influences. There are chapters in the book that talk about focusing them for spiritual development. I am a Christian but I am not saying everyone needs to be a Christian. My dad had a Muslim background.

I am saying they need to have someone who is spiritually superior to them and be aware of them so that they have the fear of something that is more than psychical. Also is the part that discusses how they can become successful entrepreneurs. How they can carve their niche in the business they are involved in,’’ said Adesile who included her personal experiences in this new interesting piece.