SANJU Movie – An eye-opener for parenting

A completely new facet to look at this debated biographical movie.

Much has been talked and spoken about the recent biographical movie SANJU. As soon as the movie was released, movie reviewers have inundated opinions on the social media platforms. While one section of these reviewers have been able to emotionally connect with Sanju ‘baba’, accepting this biography as an eye opener, there is yet another section of people who have criticised this movie to be misleading! Well, one fact is undeniable that everyone has indisputably appreciated the extraordinary efforts of the cast. So Kudos!

I HAVE A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT ASPECT TO PONDER ABOUT. To my mind, as a parent this movie has shaken me and aroused so many questions on the correct way of parenting. Just after seeing this movie, another news came about a really unfortunate incident of a student committing suicide. Somehow I am shaken. I really have no take about how good or bad the movie is or whether Sanjay Dutt is justifiable or not. The movie is all about the ups and downs of the lead character (and I prefer calling lead character and not Sanju because I do not wish to get into the facts or the biography segment, rather I want to view it from another perspective).

Some behavioural clues about the Lead Character

Blessed with all amenities and luxury rather early in life – life was a bed of roses for the lead character. Passive parenting and bad company ruined him. A good friend proved to be a saviour who left no stone unturned to lead him to the right way. During the recovery phase, what really came handy was the emotional connect with parents and transformation of the parenting style.

Having said that, let’s understand two broad styles of parenting – active and passive.

Active Parenting – Being active or being involved with the child is the key to this form of parenting. This kind of parent would go that extra mile to instil values and morals by being a constant watchdog. Getting involved with the child’s immediate surroundings, teachers, and friends and even occasionally spying on the child may be some of the active parenting traits. Well, at times this might be nagging and over impulsive. It may lead to lower self-esteem as the child may feel over protected and dependent. Some researchers feel that it might lead to a less confident child.

Passive Parenting – Modern working parents or even some non-working parents usually resort to passive parenting. It has been spoken of and researched that giving autonomy and choices makes the child bold and allows the child to face the struggles and realities of life. Passive parenting can be seen as giving flexibilities and liberties. When moderately done, this style teaches the child to build on the self-esteem and allows the child to flourish on own giving adequate litheness and decision making abilities.

In my opinion, there cannot be a black and white clear indication and decision on the CORRECT way of parenting. Parenting is about losing your insanity every now and then and being flexible to the ever changing needs of your child. What is correct today may be absolutely detrimental the next very day. However, this is no reason to panic. The need I feel is to constantly adapt to the changes. Being alert to the ever changing dynamics is required.

Passive Parenting with emotional support

What can be an approach to parenting is blending the active and passive parenting and getting the best of both the worlds. It is researched that too much interference and active parenting is detrimental to the self –esteem as also too much of passive parenting may lead to over-looking and ignoring of child’s development needs and issues. The child may feel neglected or to the other end may even feel very independent leading to a bad consequence. There is a very thin line of demarcation between being a parent and being a friend to your child. What really helps is the emotional connect with the child that will go a long way to get the foundation correct.

Some ways to get emotionally connected with child

  1. Spending quality time with them regularly ;
  2. Being child with them at times;
  3. Sharing and expressing personal experiences and emotions;
  4. Listening to them all times;
  5. Watching and observing their changing behavioural traits;
  6. Being less judgmental;
  7. Not making comparisons and above all;
  8. Accepting the way they are.

What in your mind is the correct parenting approach to help us being a pillar support for children? Do share your experiences and learnings so that together we can support them rather than being a pesky and nagging parent! Parenting indeed is tricky.

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Anisha Bajaj, a passionate mother of two, runs a children’s book library in Mumbai. Having pursued BBA, CFA and MS(Finance), she has worked with top MNCs in the past. However, motherhood opened up a new world of books to her. She is on a mission to spread the joy of learning from books with fellow moms and to encourage kids to spend lesser time on gadgets and screens. She has also made story contributions to a children book called ” My hopscotch journey- A Pari’s Tale”. Recently she has joined the editorial team for a monthly children magazine called BeyondClassrooms”.