Let’s Talk about Nigerian Youths – You need to earn my respect and trust before you correct me!

"Some older people don't realise you need to earn the RIGHT to speak to young
 people and correct them."

Over the years I have heard a lot of young people complain about not being supported when doing something ‘right‘. By right I mean starting a business in a vocational field, deciding to be a musician, becoming a dancer etc. It has also been said that the only time people seem to be concerned and they show this by back-talking and judging young people, is when he or she does something that’s not acceptable or clearly wrong.

Personally I try not to judge anyone’s actions or decisions, as I believe everyone has a reason for doing what they do; but within the Nigerian culture, I find that there are certain things that will not have any impact on who we are as Nigerians (i.e. corrupt our culture) but are still classed as taboos. Let me give an example – Recently at work, I have heard a lot of fathers talk about their sons and daughters deciding whether or not they want to go to University. This is no surprise though as the cost of a university degree these days is fairly unreasonable and with the employment rate of the world, professional degrees are becoming more and more less valuable, but that’s a topic for another day – back to my example.

Thinking about whether you want to go to University or not is not even a topic for discussion within the Nigerian society and I ask why? There is nothing wrong with choosing not to go to University as long as you have other plans set up for your life – I am all in for professional courses, apprenticeships and the likes. There are alternative routes to success and we need to realise this but I’m deviating again.
Can someone please tell me why – Why do people only seem concerned about you when things aren’t “right” with you?. A lot of people say youths are rebellious, they say we are arrogant, they say we “don’t hear word“.

Why should we? 

I’m not talking about disobeying your parents or not taking advice from your elders, but why would I listen to you when the only time you voice your opinion or make a remark is when I’ve done something unacceptable in your sight? Where were you when I was doing all the right things? Did you tell me well done? Did you compliment me and tell me how well I was doing? Why are you concerned and talking down on me, now that I have made one bad turn?
I remember one of my church members saying to my friends and I one sabbath that

Some older people don’t realise you need to earn the RIGHT to speak to young people and correct them.

Yes, you need to earn the right, gain our trust, and earn our respect and I respect those who understand this. Young people will not listen to you if all you ever do is correct and correct them, judge and judge them, pin point and pick up all the bad things going on in their life. You need to encourage them too. Yes we may be stubborn, yes we may be rude, but it’s all due to the lack of experience of this planet called earth – Forgive us and try to understand. Be there when we need a shoulder to cry on.

When we make mistakes by all means correct us but please also come with a solution. A lot of people are great at pointing out what’s wrong and not offering a solution. I bless God that I have a lot of older people around me that I respect so much because they know how to balance their disapproval of my behaviour with their approvals. On the other hand, there are some that when they speak it goes in through one ear and out through the other because it holds no weight!

Mind you, there are also some friends that behave this way – I call them seasonal friends and I know what they look like. I won’t give you any guidelines on how to spot them because even if I did, there are some that are masters of the game and you won’t be able to fish them out in a million years. Just beware that they exist.

People! we need to support each other. Young or old we all need support. No man is an island. Tell me well done when I do good and I will listen to your correction when I do wrong.

I love you all… MUAH!!!



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