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I believe that one of my primary responsibilities as a parent is to raise kids with strong ethical and moral standards so that they will have a positive impact on the world throughout their lives. This is not always an easy task — the truly worthwhile things rarely are — but it’s a basic goal I strive for.
Lately, we’ve heard news stories of parents who have neglected this duty. These people have shown their kids that lying and cheating in order to get what they want is acceptable. They have taught their children that their privilege gives them a different set of rules, and that hard work is only for those who don’t have the money to cut corners.
If there’s a bright spot to the admissions scandal, it’s that these parents’ actions have given the rest of us an opportunity to reinforce our values. This teachable moment gives us the chance to discuss the importance of hard work, honor and feeling satisfied with what you were able to achieve honestly.
Realistically, our busy daily lives often make it hard for us to have meaningful conversations with our kids. According to a recent survey by Visit Anaheim, parents reported that they spend an average of just 37 minutes of quality time with their kids per workday. However, family travel is a remedy for this situation. Vacation time is ideal for reconnecting with loved ones and sharing your hopes and concerns. It’s a way to block out the daily noise and focus on the bigger issues that kids face these days.
Through travel, parents can show that all people — regardless of nationality, culture or social status — deserve to be treated fairly and with respect, even if that sometimes means you don’t always get what you want. Now, if only every parent understood this basic concept.