‘I HATE YOU MUM” she shouted angrily at her mother and slammed the door in her face.
It’s pretty common to see scenes like that in foreign movies. As an African, you know that only very few children can get away with that. You are going to have about five seconds of glory till your mother storms in to teach you the biggest lesson of your life.
Image source: Wattpad
Almost always, these sons and daughters never really mean what they say. It’s usually just a surge of anger and a selfish attempt to hurt the person who hurt them. The issue in that scene however is not with the child’s declaration but with the word hate.
What is wrong with the word hate?
It’s a pretty strong word
While I was in my teens, I wore a t-shirt that said “I hate everyone” and this calm looking man in my church walked up to me and said “You should stop wearing this. Hate is such a strong word”. I rolled my eyes and immediately went to tell my friends about the old man who couldn’t keep his mouth out of other people’s business.
Image source: Urbantshirts
But he was right. Hate really is a strong word, too strong for a child to understand let alone utter. To hate means “to dislike intensely; to feel hostility towards”. What exactly does a child know about disliking someone or something intensely? Sometimes they utter the word with such ferocity, people within hearing distance are left astounded.
Opens the door to more negative words.
Children who say ‘hate’ a lot grow up with lots of negativity. It is important for a child to learn to be sensitive about the feelings of others. If you do not discourage your child from going about throwing the word ‘hate’ at people, that child will likely grow up into an insensitive adult.
Image source: Greenwalledtower
People usually keep hate in their arsenal for when they are trying to destroy the feelings of other or describe the most negative kind of feeling. If a child so easily says those kind of words, what can he or she come up with when they are grown? I shudder to think of it.
The word leaves an impression
You are very unlikely to forget a child who easily utters the word hate. In fact, you just might stay away from such a child so as not to invoke his/her fury. People might say “it’s just a word” but words can do a lot of damage, they can pierce even the toughest skin.
Like blogger Travis Morgan said in one of his posts,
It’s more damaging to the one who hates than to that which is hated
Throwing the word around makes it easier to be disgusted by people, to be angry and spiteful towards others and that’s no way to live.
No one wants a negative child so the next time your child says “I hate this food” or uses hate in a sentence, tell him/her gently to use ‘don’t like’ in place of hate. We really should be careful about the words we throw around.