Parents should spend more time listening and less time nagging, the winners of the fifth annual Family Values award presented by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints said yesterday, stressing that mutual respect and genuine consideration for others was the secret of a happy family life.
Taichung Mayor Jason Hu (胡志強), one of the award winners, said treating his family members with equal respect and having consideration for others was his secret to a happy family life.
“At home, I never tell my children ‘because I said so.’ We listen to what our children have to say and try to understand their points of view,” said Hu, while holding hands with his wife and son.
Hu, a lifelong politician and father of two grown children, encouraged parents to do more listening and less lecturing.
“Young people know all the principles. They hear it all the time from their teachers. What they need is to have someone listen to their feelings and thoughts,” he said.
Making time for your children is also a crucial ingredient in fostering a harmonious family, said Hsu Ming-en (徐明恩), the co-winner of the award.
A key leader in Taiwan’s electronics industry and a successful entrepreneur, Hsu said that parents must carve out time, no matter how busy, to communicate and listen to their children.
“If you are willing to arrange a time to meet with your clients, then how much more important is it to set aside a few hours to be with your family?” he said.
His wife, a school teacher, also encouraged parents to lead by example.
“Turn off the televisions. If your children see you reading, they will follow suit,” she said.