Are parents responsible for the outcome of their children when they grow up
There comes a time when parents can no longer control their children. They get too big or too unruly and the parent has too much else on. Why should they be blamed for the actions of their kids?
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Parents are the greatest single influence on a child's development
Since parents are greatest influence on their child’s development, of course they carry the responsibility for the result. Good parents spend considerable time and energy, not to mention money, in trying to bring up their children in what they consider the best manner. Just because they are not the only influence does not absolve them from at least some responsibility.
There are also external factors and contributors...
As good parents, we guide our kids as they grow while they are at home and while we are spending quality time. However, our children spend significant time at school, with their teachers, friends, class-mates, co-workers, unfriendly people, and unquestionable raw models. All of them play a significant part of their development. Some of them, might have a positive impact while others might have a very negative impact, including some of their friends, and specially when there is peer pressure. In addition, they also spend significant time watching movies and playing games. Most of the movies and Hollywood raw models are the worst, and most of the games are violent entertainment. As a result of the external factors, parents are not totally responsible and are not the single influence. Children are influence by their parents and everyone that interacts with them as they grow. As good parents, we do our best teaching them good values and ethics, and all we can do is hope that they make the right decisions.
Parents are not omnipotent.
While I have little doubt that it is the experiences of a child as it grows up that mould the person it one day becomes, I fail to see how the parent, while substantiating a sizeable portion of this experience, can be seen as the sole source of influence.
The fact is that a child comes into contact with a multitude of external forces (that is if we consider those of the parents as internal). A child learns as much on the playground as it does at home. In fact there are things that it can only learn on the playground, that can only be experienced through interaction with beings not of its own blood, through events over which its parents have no control. For example, its is here that the child will learn the great majority of what will become its concept of social interaction, lessons that will affect how it goes about communicating with others for the rest of its life. Aside from this there are the obvious limitless influences of the media, art and education.
The parent cannot exert a totalitarian influence over the child, no matter how hard they try. There will always be external influences. Furthermore, the parent should not try to exert such influence or the child will never be allowed to fully develop. The parent is a guide, not an overlord.
What do you think?