It pays to be stern


I AM writing this in response to the article “Hats off to a strict father” written by Nithya Sidhhu (StarEducate, June 15). The article really resonated with me.

All my three children, have always viewed me as a strict father.

Their complaints have never failed to make me feel that it was wrong for me to be such a strict father.

Like the writer, my eldest daughter also smarted under my regimen and in fact, complained to many of her friends that I was too harsh.

I felt that she did not understand the fact that I was actually intent on moulding her to become a person who would be ready to face life’s harsh realities one day.

Feeling misunderstood added to the guilt that grew in me.

That is why I felt immensely relieved when I read the article especially the words: “You may not appreciate it now but the discipline will help you in the future.”

Upon reading the article, I sent it to my eldest daughter who is currently studying in India.

Her reply really touched me because she said: “Appa (father) it was only after coming to college that I realised your strict ways were meant for my own good.”

Since it was Fathers Day, she sent me a picture with the quote: “The reason why a daughter loves her Dad the most is because there is at least one man in the world who will never hurt her. I love you, Dad”.

Both the article and my daughter’s message have succeeded in finally getting rid of the guilt within me.

Some fathers can’t help being strict but let me stress that they have their children’s best interests at heart.

KARUNANITHY SUBBIAH

Kuala Lumpur

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