Parenting: Teaching loyalty to kids



Autobots vs. Decepticons, Jolibee vs. McDonald’s, Ateneo vs. La Salle…

These are only some of the rivalries being followed by the youth these days.

Yung iba nga, medyo OA na nga sa sobrang pagka-diehard nila.

Those who consider themselves “Autobots” buy every toy that comes out in the market.

Yung iba naman, nagde-debate kung sino ang mas may masarap na chicken, spaghetti, fries, or sundae between the two fastfood giants.

Many Ateneans, on the other hand, will not be caught wearing green.

Taking sides or identifying with a specific group or team is healthy. This builds integrity.

At least, hindi “fence sitter” o namamangka sa dalawang ilog.

A person can also find out who his or her real friends are because of loyalty.

Pero sa totoong buhay, hindi kasindali ng pagpili ng “apple” o “banana” sa larong “London Bridge” ang pag-take ng sides.

Abstract concept

Mahirap ituro ang loyalty sa isang bata, according to counsellor and life coach Jaclyn Joyce Gatbalite. Para kasi itong love na abstract concept.

Pero pwede itong i-categorize, depende sa function: may loyalty to country (patriotism), loyalty to a partner (commitment), o loyalty to one’s craft or work (duty).

Depending on the use, there are ways to teach these concepts.

Respect for the Philippine flag or standing up for the Philippine National Anthem in movie houses is one way to teach patriotism.

Caring for a dog, including its veterinary needs, can teach commitment in young people.

Submitting projects on time or avoiding tardiness instills a sense of “duty.”

Loyalty vs. Obsession

“Loyalty, as I see it, is staying focused or unwavering toward something or someone. A child showing a high interest in a sports team, a singer, a pop group, etc. is okay. What makes it dangerous is if the ‘loyalty’ changes a child’s behavior, and manifestation of obsession is evident.”

Gatbalite is referring to the unusual or unnatural fixation with a person or object which disrupts normal, everyday activities like sleeping, eating, and the like.

Pero dapat i-differentiate ang “obsession” versus being a “fanatic.”

Let’s look at favoring a sports team once again.

Kung puro blue ang mga damit o gamit ng isang batang maka-Ateneo, hindi ito dahil obsessed siya sa team o sa mga player nito, kundi dahil gusto niyang mahanay o ma-associate sa success ng team o prestige ng ADMU.

Using the Ateneo and La Salle rivalry as an example again, rivalry teaches a child a very important reality in life — winning and losing.


Image: Dante Dennis Diosina Jr./NPPA IMAGES

“With (the lessons taught by) rivalry, a child will develop a high tolerance for rejection and failure and at the same time, have standards to follow towards excellence. The child will learn to be competitive in a healthy way than to be complacent with what he has or knows,” dagdag ni Gatbalite.

Fanatic vs. Loyalist

Iba rin naman ang pagiging “loyalist” sa pagiging “fanatic” o fan.

In religion or politics, for example, the concept of being a “loyalist” has taken on a negative meaning because these followers no longer seem to have the freedom to think or decide on their own.

Gatbalite believes that “Loyalty is good per se. What makes it bad is ‘blind loyalty.’ If one is influenced by an authority and becomes a ‘loyalist,’ nawawala ang sense of identity ng tao.”

Loyalty vs. Ass-Kissing

Iba rin ang taong loyal sa taong sipsip. Ang pagkakaiba nila is motive.

“The ‘sipsip’ benefits from the person an individual is sucking up to, while loyalty is given unconditionally,” sabi ni Gatbalite.

Dahil isang abstract concept nga ang loyalty, matututunan lang ito ng bata through experience at sa ipinapakitang example ng mga taong may authority o yung mga close sa kanya.

Kaya mga Mommy at Daddy, Ate at Kuya, Tito at Tita, make sure na maging good example kayo lagi sa kids around you or i-expose sila sa mga magagandang impluwensya.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *