COVID-19 And Declining Family Values
Exclusive report by Chinaka Okoro
Before now, there was the general assumption that all was well with the average family. The implicit love and cohesion that seemingly pervaded most families were mere deceptions and hyped. There were some cracks in the family walls, which were not patched.
The situation was cloaked in secrecy because every day, the husband and wife would leave for their respective places of work while the children would be off to school. Everybody comes back home in the evening tired. They will manage to prepare dinner and retire to bed. None had time to discuss burning issues raised during some quarrels or mix-ups. The deceitful family lifestyle continued till COVID-19 pandemic set in.
That was the routine until the Federal Government took steps to curb the spread of the Coronavirus. It then imposed lockdown in some states, forcing people to stay at home.
With this, there was no room for charades. Family members had to face the reality of life. Every inconspicuous character became bare.
In the circumstances, the COVID-19 induced lockdown provided opportunities for such wobbly families to fix whatever had gone awry. Some family matters that were disregarded before now were talked over and the family bond became stronger again.
A resident of Ilamoshe Estate in Isolo, a Lagos suburb, who preferred not to be named, told The Nation that his 16-year-old daughter had to convene a family meeting that helped in restoring lasting peace in his home.
Sadly though, some families didn’t take the advantage provided by the lockdown to either maintain peace or bring about one in their homes as there were reported cases of domestic violence during the period.
Declining family values as major challenge
To experts, family values are so important to society. While there are significant efforts through education and various opportunities, there are signs that there are too many young people falling victim to negativity as a result of waning family values.
“The real problem of declining family values runs far deeper than the issue of young, single mothers. In some two-parent homes, children are exposed to crude, foul language and even physical abuse,” they maintained.
The Best Way Out
The onus is on parents, guardians, government and all key stakeholders in the society to ensure that the pristine era when children are raised in accordance with social norms is in place through a commitment to social re-engineering.