The Write Circle of March 19th, 2017 hosted Dr Swati Lodha. Held at ITC Rajputana, Shailesh Lodha, popular actor, comedian and writer, was in conversation with Swati.
Apra Kuchhal introduced Dr. Swati Lodha, author, poet and entrepreneur who was in conversation with Shailesh Lodha, actor, author and poet. Swati’s latest book, Don’t Raise Your Children, Raise Yourself, came out in 2016 to rave reviews.
The book is an attempt at aiding parents who come from a uniquely Indian background. Bringing parenting and Indian mythology together, Swati explained the concept of “moon-parenting” that she elaborates in the book. The journey of the moon is very similar to the journey of a parent – the way the moon moves from its state as a new moon to the full moon stage and back to being a new moon. Likewise, a parent grows as the child advances in age and temperament. As children become financially and emotionally independent, the presence of the parents begins to diminish. Just as the new moon is invisible but still present in the sky, parents learn to be around without interfering.
Swati’s approach is unique in that it takes care to tailor the book to the socio-cultural set-up of India. We have all grown up with the idea that only an obedient child is a good child – Indian parents equate disagreement from their children to disrespect towards them personally. It is this attitude that kindles a tension that has the potential to grow into a stop in communication when parents are hell-bent on being obeyed at all costs. This is the wrong road to go down, according to her. She advised that when faced with disagreement, parents should instead work closely with their children to understand its source.
Speaking about the cultural boons that present itself to Indian parents, she stressed on the importance of ‘grandparenting’ – as grandparents are as vital in the development of a child’s psyche as the parents are. Young parents should take special care to ensure that children remain close to their grandparents, as it is important for them to have older role models that they can absorb from.
She announced her second book on parenting that is in the works right now, to Shailesh’s surprise! Co-authored with their sixteen-year-old daughter, the book will be titled Why Parents Suck? And is an analysis of the parenting situation from the point of view of the child as well as the parent.
She also stressed on the importance of being observant of the child’s emotional state at all times, and pointed out that putting immense pressure on children’s performance in studies and otherwise might have dire consequences.
“Just because you buy a guitar doesn’t mean you are a guitarist. Similarly, just because you have children doesn’t mean you are a parent” Swati said, to much agreement from the audience. Parenting is an emotion, she says, it can be directed towards the raising of a child, an organisation, or a movement. It is imperative that if you have chosen this part, you give it undivided attention.
The audience were highly engaged and asked insightful questions that lead the discussion through interesting channels.
The event was held on March 19, 2017 at ITC Rajputana, Jaipur at 5:00 pm.
- Shree Cement is India’s premier cement manufacturing company. They are actively involved in promoting cultural and literary traditions throughout the country.
- Prabha Khaitan Foundation is dedicated to the social, cultural and educational advancement of the society. The Kolkata based NGO runs humanitarian projects across the country which includes women’s training centers, child literacy programmes and aid drives.
- ITC Rajputana brings world class conference facilities in one of the India’s most popular tourist destinations.
- Siyahi is India’s leading literary agency, based in Jaipur. They also organize literary events – from intimate readings to international literary festivals.
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