Children in Jamaica grow up with a sense of responsibility because they have to contribute to the running and the work load of the house. Washing the dishes, keeping the house clean, keeping the bathroom clean (hated by everyone and normally allocated to the person under punishment), and keeping the yard clean (hell for the Children with massive trees in their yards). On the surface it might seem like a lot for Children to undertake but look at it objectively and in contrast to children in so called first world countries and you might realize disadvantages.

All of these actions develop skills and levels of personal development that are needed in adult lives. The first thing these responsibilities challenges in young people is their immature egos; which helps to foster humility. Have you ever stopped to think why people from deprived countries come to so called developed countries and do the jobs no one who grew up in those countries will do? It would be accepted to assume it’s because they are illiterate or unskilled, but that is not always the case. There is also an argument to be made that their desperation is a driving factor; after all you are in a strange country with no means of survival unless you do whatever is presented. There is some degree of truth to that, but again, not entirely true. When a person grows up with very little they quickly learn that they have to contribute in order to get the things they desire. You have to help your parents, your siblings and your friends so that each of you will have any chance of achieving any of your desires. Nothing comes easy, and everything is more difficult if you try to do it alone.

It is unheard of for any child to have a pack of biscuits, or any snack for that matter all to themselves in poor countries; which foster selflessness. The money it would require to give one child a snack for that child’s personal enjoyment would be better spent providing a light meal for all the children. In first world countries every child in a home might want something different to eat at every meal time and parents fall in line for fear of being seen as bad parents. But are these parents unconsciously creating entitled, egotistical, selfish adults. And is it possible that the people who design these cultures are fully aware of the type of human beings this type of culture is creating and encourage it simply because it is that way of being that encouraged certain countries to rob other generous unsuspecting cultures of their resources?

It is not only the ego that is put in check at an early age as a result but also a young person’s sense of responsibility and their community awareness in that they learn to see the value in others because their survival depends on others. At this juncture I would be remiss if I didn’t point out couple downsides to this type of cultural upbringing. Firstly, self identity especially unique self expression can suffer because you become so absorbed into the order of things that a young person can find it difficult to express a certain level of difference. Another issue that often arrives from this type of upbringing is a dependent aspect of entitlement. There can often times be a blurring of the lines between helping and fostering dependency. Some believe they are entitled to what another has simply because they themselves don’t have it. However if you compare the industrious nature of poorer countries in relation to richer ones there is no question that poorer countries have more industrious people. And that is stemming from the fact that their early development fostered way more responsibility.

In developed countries parents pander to their children’s every need even after they have become adults, and then one day long after they were suppose to stop and even though they haven’t prepared their children for this day, they decide not to do it anymore. Which then causes a lot of friction between parents and children. The children now think their parents are wick and the parent think the child are being disrespectful. Both are correct. This will be a shock to a child that was not prepared for this day, this child should have been groomed for years for this day, for whether the parents made the decision or not this day was destined to come, that is the natural order of life. Parents who are intent on providing for their children forever is destructive. Very few children will choose to become independent; most will hang on until their parents die. Therefore it is the responsibility of parents to prepare children for independence, and if that preparation starts early enough it will not cause life altering trauma.

If you compare young people up to the age of 25 years old from financially deprived countries with young adults of the same demographic from privileged countries which group of children are usually more motivated to handle the challenges of life? If what I proposed here isn’t a major contributing factor then what is?  Young people in Jamaica today are way more destructive and irresponsible than any generation prior. However I do not put the blame these young people. The blames is placed at the feet of the parents; even if these parents were unaware of the destruction they were creating. As Jamaicans become more financially liberated less responsibility has been put on children; which everyone figured would be beneficial but nothing was put in place to protect the children from themselves. I predict that as Jamaicans becomes more financially liberated the attitudes of the people will become a less motivated more entitled one. At the moment you people from deprived countries are more responsible, more humble, more respectful, more industrious and more motivated when given opportunities.

Children don’t come with manuals; however we have had enough children in different cultures with contrasting applications to start being more objective and less emotional. Do you want the best for your children or is it about proving how much you love them? And in the grand scheme of things; is that love? Most adults will resist the following with every fiber of their being simply because it brings them into focus; THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A SPOILT CHILD, THERE IS ONLY BAD PARENTING! Children are representations of the environment they grew up in.