Students wish they had more time with parents and that they quarreled less.
[I wish] that they were mostly at home. Maximilian, 8, m, Singapore
Ask for regular time with your parents, such as a relaxed dinner together, reading together before bedtime, and having a fun family outing every weekend such as a hike or picnic.
Don’t let mothers and fathers fight with each other.
Mohammed, m, 10, Saudi Arabia.
Fighting between them is their responsibility, not yours. In any close relationship between two imperfect people, conflict exists. If people work through conflict in a fair and healthy way, it’s good. Some people feel better if they yell, but if it bothers you, leave the room. Can you go in your room when they fight?
Also, realize that you are not responsible for your parents’ relationship. If something about the way they argue bothers you, let them know. You can watch to see what starts off the fights so you can learn what not to do in your own relationships.
[I wish] That they really paid more attention to what you said to them.
K-J, 11, m, Belgium
A 2007 survey of developed countries by UNESCO found the percentage of parents who spend time just talking with kids several times a week ranges from about 90% in Hungary and Italy to less than half in Canada and Germany.
I would change their saying “I experienced this when I was your age.”
Zachary, 11, m, Belize
When I come home and I finally want to tell a story and they don’t listen to me. Janine, 11, f, Switzerland
Some adults work like 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM. This is bad for kids because the adults can’t spend time with their kids. Ramon, 12, m, Belize
When they’re mad at you, they yell and spank you. I just think it’s not fun. Elizabeth, 12, f, Belize
My parents can never agree and are always fighting. Kylee, 12, New Mexico
Why do parents think they have so much control over their child, making them think they have the final word on every argument/quarrel? There are many restrictions within the house and what I can do. I would reduce the number of times they would say ‘NO’ to something you wanted to have or do.
Ping, 13, m, Singapore
Rules [bother me], because I can’t play, fight, or bounce the ball on the wall in my house. Validmar, 13, m, Belize
Parents have to punish their children because punishment is the way of learning. Mwanaima, 13, f, Tanzania
Adults should not beat their juniors. Azharul, 13, m, Bangladesh
To plan their life, especially family planning, or to bear children by planning according to their ability. Nisembia, 14, f, Tanzania
To be more relaxed because some parents scream at their kids for really small reasons. Mark, 14, m, Quebec
How to get rid of the quarrel and fighting between my parents.
Dong Mei, 14, f, rural China
Do not ignore children! Ha Rim, 14, m, Korea
I wish they could remember more about when they were young and don’t make so many rules. I believe it’s better to take each thing as it comes.
Brigit, 15, f, Sweden
I wish they would understand teenagers’ feelings more and not tell us our dreams are farfetched and that we should just get a nice business degree.
Morgan, 15, f, North Carolina
If your children do wrong bad things, what will you do to teach them?
Yin Ming, 16, f, Shanghai, China
Instead of yelling or hitting, discuss the problem with them to figure out why the child made the wrong choice. As many youth have said in this book, adults need to listen to young people. People learn best from consequences, rather than nagging or hitting. If the family rule is that dirty clothes are put in Iaundry baskets in order to be washed, the consequence of leaving clothes in your room is they don’t get washed. If dinnertime is at 6:00 PM and the child is late, dinner is cold. It’s also important to reward and reinforce good behavior, giving children daily praise and appreciation. Behavior modification psychology teaches the importance of reinforcing good behavior and not giving much attention to bad behavior.
I would change their seriousness. My mom loves to be serious and scream. I wish sometime she’d be a little more carefree. Amy Marie, 16, f, Illinois
Their carelessness about what their children are doing and who they are friends with. Kat, 17, f, Indiana
Their ability to fully listen to what their children have to say. Sometimes they have selective hearing and don’t truly understand us kids, but if they listened then they would know. Erin, 17, f, Michigan
I would change the fact that some adults do not take the time to talk to their kids. I believe firmly that if a child is showed affection and understanding from an adult, then they can prosper with that love later on in life. Felice, 17, f, Illinois
Parents are very busy or working, so they often neglect the growth of their kids. “John,” 19, m, China
My father is a good father, but he is easy to anger. I hope he doesn’t angry every day and is happy. Zhu, 20, m, China
I really don’t like my family. I live with my mum and I think my grandparents don’t like me. I feel very sad about my family, so I don’t want to live in this family. Sometimes I want a boyfriend, but when I decide to get a boyfriend, I am afraid of a lot of things. Yao, 20, f, China
It is very difficult to not feel comfortable with your family. Friends of both genders can provide some of the acceptance all of us need.