Friday, July 17, 2009

Parenting Problems....

Bism'Illah wa as salaamu alaikum.

I stuffed a few things into my Q&A with our imam recently, and one of them was regarding parenting. What does one do when the husband believes that it is okay for the children to watch movies or other programs with music, uncovered women, un-Islamic behavior, etc. Oh, it doesn't need to be every day, it may be just for certain situations or as a "treat."

I'm beginning to HATE that word "treat."

Well, the imam said, "It is a big mistake to let your children watch things with music or any other haram elements." Phew! I felt like I wasn't going crazy, wasn't really so terribly extreme in my thoughts that if it contains haram elements then it is simply sending a message to your children that it's okay to compromise on Allah's Rules and Prohibitions just a little, now and then. It's like saying, "hey, it's haram but that's okay just this time...and just so you can learn in a fun way...and just so I can give you a "treat" because I can't come up with something totally halal to do with you, or don't want to go to that effort.

Of course, that then led to the question, "What do we, as spouses, do about it?" He said, talk to your husband (wife) about it. Well, I know there are some for whom that did not work. Then he said, turn down the volume so they don't hear the music. Hmmm...fine if it is only small bits of song, but if the music is in the background then that doesn't work and they end up listening to it anyway. Then he said, the most important thing is to find alternatives. Yes, find Islamically acceptable, good, positive alternatives so that what you take away is replaced with something else.

Alhamdul'Illah, we have provided many alternatives for our children from online sources that have proved both beneficial and halal and other physical activities. However, the problem itself is rooted in a culture that expects and requires "entertainment" and cannot do without it. Sitting on one's backside staring at a screen is so much easier than getting oneself in gear and going out to do something, or playing a board game. All is entertainment, but they vary in degrees of benefit and halal aspects. I'm sick, sick, sick of shaytaan.

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