Last Word: Future generation disadvantaged by poor parenting

WATCHING Channel 4 s Jo Frost: Extreme Parental Guidance on Tuesday evening made depressing viewing, writes Louise McEvoy. The Supernanny had to deal with mum Moya, who was under the impression buying her young daughter couture clothes was the key to show

WATCHING Channel 4's Jo Frost: Extreme Parental Guidance on Tuesday evening made depressing viewing, writes Louise McEvoy.

The Supernanny had to deal with mum Moya, who was under the impression buying her young daughter couture clothes was the key to showing her love, and mum Louise, who failed to realise her son's incessant computer game playing was a direct result of him being utterly bored at home.

Examples of such woeful parenting are beyond belief and provide no comfort whatsoever that the future generation is in good hands.

To think there are lots of children stuck with adults who are completely clueless about good parenting is heartbreaking.


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You don't have to be a parent - Jo Frost is herself childless - to know that what children need most in life is love and affection, time and attention, discipline and boundaries, safety and stability.

Why did Louise allow her son Bailey to play computer games for over 35 hours a week in school term time, and up to 80 hours a week during the holidays? She was even actively encouraging him to play these mind-numbing games by taking his meals to him so he could eat in front of the screen.

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As his mother, Louise is far from powerless, so it is beyond me why she assumed a position of someone who lacks control. If nothing else, she owes it to her son not to be so weak.

With regard to Moya, by buying Madison designer gear and entering her into pageants - which incidentally I believe are harmful to the children who take part - Moya actually got into huge financial difficulties, to such an extent she said she would have to sell their family home.

By buying her daughter all the things she wanted, Moya threatened to take away one of the key things she needed - stability.

Children have no concept of the value of things and, unless their parents teach them otherwise, they do not care if something has a designer label or not.

Moya over-indulged her daughter, failing to realise that material things are no match for sound relationships when it comes to happiness.

She did not know how to be the authoritative figure, to lay down rules, to say no, and to earn respect from her daughter.

Moya struggled with her daughter's behaviour and attitude basically because Madison was spoilt.

Parents are ultimately responsible for shaping their children through their formative years. To do this effectively, and to give their children the best possible start in life, they need to instil rules and boundaries. Contravention of these rules should unfailingly result in consequences.

Too often parents make the mistake of trying to be friends with their children. This is not their role. Parents are the head of their household, not equals with their children. To assume such a position only breeds contempt.

If parents bring up their children with love, authority and discipline, a mutual respect will be nurtured - ensuring the best friendship possible in later life.

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