Allow me the pleasure of introducing you to Bob, the psychiatrist of Chris Wood Court. Bob has cared for my property, the lawn, the trees, the bushes, those endless weeds, ever since the day we moved in almost 25 years ago. He has given me a haven that can never be replicated. There are six houses on the block and they are all under his wonderful care. More importantly, Bob is one of those rare human beings that personify humanity, wisdom and decency.
Over the years, he and I have had so many conversations about life. Our children are the same age and they all turned out so beautifully: academically, productively and kindly. This is not just due to fate or luck. Rather, it resulted from relentless attention of the parents to constantly guide the kids to stay on the right path. It is incredibly time-consuming. Throughout his work for hundreds of families in the area, he has seen such problems and tragedies develop within families because of benign neglect in child rearing, parental enabling of unacceptable, even illegal actions and an absence of responsibility, almost as if after having these kids, nature would just take its course. Doesn’t work that way.
One specific lesson he always taught his daughter was that he, his wife and all his familial generations that came before, worked damn hard to establish and maintain a sense of moral value and a reputable place in the community at large. I am not talking of merely material benefits or career successes. Much more important are the standards of honesty to yourself, decency to your fellow-man and a commitment to your community. Parents must expect, with no leeway, the same respect from their children as they do from other people and society. Bob and his wife have not toiled so long and hard over decades only to see their accomplishments flushed down the toilet by some irresponsible, fun-loving teenage prank or immediate gratification derived from a moment’s whim. Thus, I in turn, communicated that lesson to my children. No child should even contemplate any action that would impinge or destroy all that his parents have built over a lifetime.
Our world can be a vibrant, fun-loving, exciting place. It can also be a cruel and destructive hell. What we teach our children, not just from time to time, but incessantly, by our words and our examples, will determine what their world will be for them. In the end, it is the ultimate purpose for living.
Bob is a gift to his family, his friends and the world which he inhabits. We could do a lot worse than have a sit-down with this man who has gotten it absolutely correct. I have been fortunate to have had his wisdom available to me for over twenty years. My psychiatrist of Chris Wood Court is a Solomon of the street, our local enclave and a much larger sphere of influence than you could imagine.
In the very beginning of this website, I used Gloria Estefan’s song “Turn the Beat Around”, to set forth the purpose writing down my thoughts on life. What held true almost three years ago, is even truer today. We can change our world, but the most basic building block will be what we teach our children every day. Love and adore your offspring, but accompany that with what you really owe them: what is right, what is wrong, praise when they act appropriately and a talking down to when they do not toe the line. Once again, here’s Gloria, presenting us with a wonderful symmetry to my three years of observations:
Tags: "Turn the Beat Around" starting with your own faimly and expanding into your community and world, child-rearing practices, the legacy of favorable family repute, the psychiatrist of Chris Wood Court