Category Social issues

5 Communication Mistakes That Kill Relationships

5 Communication Mistakes That Kill Relationships

1. Not asking unique, personal questions

“How was your day?”

There’s nothing implicitly wrong with the above question. But, if repeated frequently, it lacks sincerity and shows a lack of effort. Many couples go through the motions of social platitudes because they don’t know what else to say, but this kind of filler talk can be surprisingly devastating. Why?

When you say something canned, it implies you’re doing it out of social duty, like nodding your head when you accidentally lock eyes with someone. “Oh, I guess I’m supposed to ask how your day was now.” This is not the message you want to send to someone you love.

When you say something unique, however, it’s not only more engaging, it communicates: “I care about you.” Try asking things like, “Did you learn anything new today?” or, “What made you smile today?”

The latter question is especially poignant because it shows that you’re taking an active interest in their emotional well-being, and they’ll get to relive the happiest part of their day. It’s a better way to get a real conversation started, too.

2. Not stating the obvious

“I love you. Your beauty is what makes the birds sing (obviously).”

Sometimes, we need to hear the obvious. It’s not enough to tell someone you love them once, because later they’ll wonder, “But how about now?” The same goes for compliments. When our needs aren’t being met, we’ll look for it in other places, which can be a slippery slope.

3. Not communicating a problem or harsh truth

Strong relationships are built on the foundation of being able to talk about and talk through anything. The more difficult, awkward conversations you have, the more you’ll trust each other.

4. Not communicating at all (or being passive aggressive)

Passive aggressiveness might be the most effective way to end a relationship. The very first rule of communication — the one that overrides any communication tip you hear — is that you have to DO IT. Not speaking to each other, only speaking defensively, and hiding behind thoughtless platitudes are all ways of shutting down communication channels. And when communication stops, whether literally or practically, that relationship will begin to die. Think about that the next time you’re about to teach someone a lesson with silence.

Communication is the true life source of relationships. Keep it going and do it effectively, and you will overcome the obstacles all couples face, and after each victory, you’ll be even closer. If you find that you never fight or argue, that’s great, but be careful, because it may be a sign that you’re not fully communicating with each other in order to “keep the peace.”

5. Not listening and empathizing

When you hear the word “communication,” do you imagine someone speaking or silently listening? Most of us would imagine speaking, but the key to communication is in understanding the other person. When both people seek to understand the other person, communication just works better. When both people are focused on communicating their own thoughts, who is there to listen?

Empathizing is another key component of relational communication. Empathy is understanding and joining in your partner’s emotional state. And think about how important that is: if you don’t show empathy, they will feel alone in their hardships. Many people, myself included, often jump into advice mode too quickly. But when people share their problems, they often don’t need advice; they need emotional support.

Make the choice right now to commit to healthy communication practices in your relationship, and work together to improve as a team.

The first step: Share this with your significant other, and tell them which area(s) you personally intend to improve upon for them.

Posted by William Ekwelu

“When a man is stung by a bee, he doesn’t set off to destroy all beehives”


The 8 “L’s” of Parenting

The 8 “L’s” of Parenting
By Leah Davies, M.Ed.

LOVE your child. For your child to be successful, he or she must feel valued. Your gentle touches, smiles and hugs communicate love. Giving your undivided attention, especially at the end of each day, demonstrates caring.

LOOK for the good in your child and make specific comments on what he or she does well. You must believe in your child’s worth before he or she can believe it. If you want your child to have self-confidence and motivation, watch for positive behaviors and comment on them.

LISTEN, without judgment, to your child express his or her thoughts and feelings. If you do not listen, your child may attempt to gain your attention by misbehaving.

LAUGH with your child, not at him or her. Demonstrate a sense of humor as you cope with life’s difficulties. Laugh and play together.

LABOR diligently and with pride so that your child will want to work hard, persevere and do his or her best.

LEARN new information. It is fine to say, I don’t know, but then add that you both can find out together. Take the time to read and thus instill a love of learning. On car trips play word games, read or listen to books on tape.

LEAVE the television and other media off. Many programs and video games desensitize your child towards violence and contribute to fearfulness and aggression. Place computers in central locations to monitor internet use.

LIVE life to its fullest. Take pleasure in little things like an ice cream cone, a beautiful day or the enthusiasm of your child. Read, pretend, take walks, play games, have pleasant meals, share dreams, and enjoy each other.


We should all salute President Museveni for the stance he has taken against homosexuality. It takes guts to do what he has done following threats from the most powerful politicians in the world.

I wish the presidents of Gambia and Zimbabwe had handled the issue of homosexuality in the same way Museveni has done so(i.e. telling the world the reasons for their stand instead of calling gay people every name under the sun). A debate has been pumped up internationally on the validity of the scientific research “wrongly” concluding that there is a correlation between homosexuality and genes.

He has also started up a debate among Ugandans on oral sex and it’s impact on our health. In the west, this debate briefly appeared on our TVs after Actor Michael Douglas claimed that his throat cancer was caused by “too much oral sex”. But obviously people addicted to certain things never listen but I think we are getting there. Let us CAUTIOUSLY use our tongues for purposes they aren’t meant for!

In other words, the president is indirectly promoting people’s health and I must say that I’m a bit impressed. I don’t care how much political capital he is getting out of this thing, for now!

Of course, there are going to be consequences for this. Uganda is going to be endlessly in the news because I’m sure gay activists aren’t gonna give up. There will be freezing of aid as a start but I’m sure Museveni must have been prepared for this. But for now, lets raise our glasses to cultural and religious preservation in Africa.

Abbey K.Semuwemba.


It seems the topic of homosexuals was provoked by the arrogant and careless Western groups that are fond of coming into our schools and recruiting young children into homosexuality and lesbianism, just as they carelessly handle other issues concerning Africa. Initially, I did not pay much attention to it because I was busy with the immediate issues of defence, security, electricity, the roads, the railways, factories, modernization of agriculture, etc.

When, eventually, I concentrated my mind on it, I distilled three problems:

1. those who were promoting homo-sexuality and recruiting normal people into it;

2. as a consequence of No. 1 above, many of those recruited were doing so for mercenary reasons – to get money – in effect homosexual prostitutes; these mercenary homosexual prostitutes had to be punished;

3. homosexuals exhibiting themselves; Africans are flabbergasted by exhibitionism of sexual acts – whether heterosexual or otherwise and for good reason. Why do you exhibit your sexual conduct? Are you short of opportunity for privacy – where you can kiss, fondle (kukirigiita, kwagaaga) etc.? Are we interested in seeing your sexual acts – we the Public? I am not able to understand the logic of the Western Culture. However, we Africans always keep our opinions to ourselves and never seek to impose our point of view on the others. If only they could let us alone.

It was my view that the above three should be punished harshly in order to defend our society from disorientation. Therefore, on these three I was in total accord with the MPs and other Ugandans. I had, however, a problem with Category 4 or what I thought was category 4 – those “born” homosexual. I thought there were such people – those who are either genetic or congenital homosexuals. The reason I thought so was because I could not understand why a man could fail to be attracted to the beauties of a woman and, instead, be attracted to a fellow man. It meant, according to me, that there was something wrong with that man – he was born a homosexual – abnormal.

I, therefore, thought that it would be wrong to punish somebody because of how he was created, disgusting though it may be to us. That is why I refused to sign the Bill. In order to get to the truth, we involved Uganda Scientists as well as consulting Scientists from outside Uganda. My question to them was: “Are there people that are homosexual right from birth?”. After exhaustive studies, it has been found that homosexuality is in two categories: there are those who engage in homosexuality for mercenary reasons on account of the under – developed sectors of our economy that cause people to remain in poverty, the great opportunities that abound not withstanding; and then there are those that become homosexual by both nature (genetic) and nurture (up-bringing). The studies that were done on identical twins in Sweden showed that 34% – 39% were homosexual on account of nature and 66% were homosexual on account of nurture. Therefore, even in those studies, nurture was more significant than nature. Can somebody be homosexual purely by nature without nurture? The answer is: “No”. No study has shown that. Since nurture is the main cause of homosexuality, then society can do something about it to discourage the trends. That is why I have agreed to sign the Bill.

Since Western societies do not appreciate politeness, let me take this opportunity to warn our people publicly about the wrong practices indulged in and promoted by some of the outsiders. One of them is “oral sex”. Our youth should reject this because God designed the human being most appropriately for pleasurable, sustainable and healthy sex. Some of the traditional styles are very pleasurable and healthy. The mouth is not engineered for that purpose except kissing. Besides, it is very unhealthy. People can even contract gonorrhea of the mouth and throat on account of so-called “oral sex”, not to mention worms, hepatitis E, etc. The Ministry of Gender and Youth should de-campaign this buyayism imported from outside and sensitize the youth about the healthy life style that is abundant in our cultures. We reject the notion that somebody can be homosexual by choice; that a man can choose to love a fellow man; that sexual orientation is a matter of choice.

Since my original thesis that there may be people who are born homosexual has been disproved by science, then the homosexuals have lost the argument in Uganda. They should rehabilitate themselves and society should assist them to do so.

Yoweri K. Museveni Gen. (Rtd)


24th February, 2014.


After coming off the long train commute from the gym; I just rode in a cab owned by a Ugandan Cab driver and without provocation he told me that ” I have voted in every election since 1995 and I have voted against M7 every single time. In the next election I am going to vote for him for the first time.” And I was like “even with the bad roads and corruption” without batting an eye the fellow was like “yup!”

Has this issue won M7 a new term? 2 years between now and 2016 is a life time in politics.

1) It is only in the past 25 years Gays have made serious advancement in most Western countries. As we speak many states in the United States are still battling with whether to give Same Sex marriage partners Healthcare;

2) So the question then begs: why are Western countries expecting African countries to have a faster trajectory in regards to Sexual orientation advancement? It was only in the late 70’s when many of the laws against homosexuality were repealed, which is yesterday in historical terms.

3) Politics is driving the story on both sides of the divide. The Gay lobby in the Democratic Party is a lot stronger than most Ugandans know. Democrats cannot win in the State with the biggest electoral college (55) voted without Gay support. Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to California and New York.

Furthermore; the Democratic Party is funded by a number of Billionaires among whom are Gay. Ever heard of David Geffen? So Barack Obama does not have any other option than to be up front on this issue, especially with the mid-term election at the end of the year.What may happen is that they will cutoff some symbolic stuff in order to satisfy the liberal wing of the party. Guess what they may have been planning all along to cut some of the aid because of budgets cuts in due to the upcoming budget deal.

As long as this Siasa; they will both play to their constituency. I can almost bet you M7 made them aware what he was going to do but due to political theatrics the Democratic Administration had to play as if they are just hearing about.

4) For M7 it is almost a no brainer as to where his political campus will point to. Most of us, me included who find folly with this bill are outside the country and I hate to say do not matter in the long run.

In politics; morally right and politically right are two different things. Not many African leaders are willing to spend political Capital on such an explosive issue. If anything for M7 is going to gain political Capital by being seen as bucking the West on this issue;

5) If you think I am kidding, notice how none existent Uganda’s opposition is in this debate. Their problem is that most of their supporters are with M7 or he is with them or this issue. They cannot take stand supporting this bill because they will upset a US Democratic Administration who are more receptive to them than a Republican Administration, who were warmer to M7. Silence in the meantime wins them no political capital at all.

6) The danger for Uganda and many African countries is that all the right conditions for hysteria are being put in place. When it starts it will be very hard to put the Genie back in the bottle again.

On south Sudan and Uganda involvement,What I am hearing is that:

1) After the dust has somewhat settled, Kiir is not looking very good in many a Western Capital simply because no credible evidence of a Coup by Machar has emerged;

2) To say that M7 saved his skin (Kiir’s) is an understatement. The problem with that is that Kiir when compared to Machar, is now being viewed as the political weakling. That is never a good thing in power politics. Political and economic interests can shift in a blink of an eye;

3) The biggest career mistake Kiir made was to fire Rebecca Garang from Cabinet. The Garang wing of SPLA all shifted loyalties or warm to Machar;

4) Someone told me that there may be 2 Million Ugandans in S.Sudan. I’m a little skeptical of that number simply because that represents almost 5% of the total Ugandan population, but there are people who swear by that number;

5) Those Ugandans have in all intent and purpose have not sent money back home. The harbinger of things to come is felt at many a Forex Bureau.

Some project a Recession in the Ugandan economy very soon.

As for Syria; I think Obama was very smart to stay out of it. Trust me Assad is looking like a better option as every day passes by. The Rebels are all Al Queda affiliated and they have began blowing each other up.

I think the Obama Administration has decided quietly to let Assad survive because he is the less of two evils!



Folks:The West dared YKM and YKM has dared them by signing the bill into law. No more uncertainties. It is done and it is the law of Uganda. We may not like it but it was a law passed by a majority of MPs.

Folks, this is an example of a backlash against globalization of an idea. It was the same point Mr. Warigi was making in the Nation.

It is now mute. Mr. Obama should take some blame for putting YKM between a rock and hard place. Even poor governments can bite and live with the consequences.

YKM’s signing the bill into law also repudiates neoliberal claims that with globalization, governments are “impotent”. Well YKM just demonstrated otherwise.

So let us wait and see those consequences from Mr. Obama. Many of you may recall his Red line argument against Iran. How did that go?

California not long ago voted against same sex marriage in a referendum . Democrats win California because of others issues including the Latino vote. An the last I checked Latino are not so crazy about gay rights. Actually on that issue many would seem to favor the Republican view. Which is to say they care about other important issues other than same sex marriage.

The West should learn that opening lecturing Africans will backfire. It backfired badly in Kenya when the West including President Obama toiled to tell the “Wanjiku” how to vote. We know what happened.

It is better for the West to be careful. Africans may be poor but they are very proud people. Anyone ignores that at their own risk. And listen to the bumbling Ugandan opposition harping on it to call for sanctions. They look perennial bumbling [fill in]

The West is wrong to believe that Archbishop Tutu can sway public opinion in Africa. Not even in South Africa so go figure. Remove Obama from the equation here for a moment and ask yourself: what is the import of this on Uganda as a society?

Let’s examine the effect that this law will have in the nation. I would argue that homosexuality is a non-issue in Uganda: while we frown about it, we also know it has always existed in our society.

A law is only effective if it’s implemented. Unlike prostitution, homosexuality can be concealed forever. So, how will Uganda go about hunting down gays?

Enacting bad or unnecessary laws is not a sign of strength or independence; this is an opportunistic law aimed at hoodwinking the religious types into siding with Museveni come 2016.

I doubt it that any gays will actually be pulled from under their blankets and charged with engaging in same-sex sex.

Which brings me back to my original question: if you won’t implement the law, why pass it? This kind of bravado to spite critics, is what buffoons do.


The Scientific evidence Museveni needs to sign the anti-Homo bill revealed!

In 1901, Havelock Ellis argued that homosexuality was inborn and therefore not immoral. This view was equally promoted by the famous psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud. By claiming homosexuality is inborn, proponents argue that it cannot be classified as an illness; it’s not a vice and it’s not something to be ashamed of or even practiced secretly. This and other similar psychoanalytic theories of homosexuality were soon shot down when great flaws were observed in the study approach. For instance, it was detected that the theories were not subjected to rigorous empirical tests (Herek, 2009).

It’s over a century now and this same argument is being put forward again, but this time more vociferously. Leveraging changing social norms, a politically stronger homosexual community and, most importantly, an amazingly strong media backing, the biological argument that homosexuals are born that way has found its way into the public domain yet again.

According to Dean Byrd, a clinical professor at the psychiatric department as well as the department of family and preventive medicine, University of Utah, “The initial ‘evidence’ used to support a biological model of homosexuality came from Simon Levay, Dean Hamer, and the research team of J. Micheal Bailey and Richard C. Pillard. Of the four researchers, three are self-identified homosexuals.”

Considering the homosexual orientation of these researchers, the outcome of their study isn’t really surprising. Explaining further, Professor Byrd pointed out the often ignored fact that Levay’s research had a number of limitations, including an insignificant amount of information about the sexual histories of the research subjects. Nonetheless, his unconvincing study was sufficient proof for homosexual activists and major media outlets to drive home their argument that homosexuality is indeed biologically induced.

“Opposing views were, for the most part, silenced. Any junior-level scientist could quite quickly see that this claim was far from accurate, but most dared not speak out for fear of being ostracized or even labelled homophobic.” (Byrd, 2010).

Interestingly, Levay eventually recanted when he apparently contradicted the media’s interpretation of his findings.

“I did not prove that homosexuality is genetic, or find a genetic cause for being gay. I didn’t show that gay men are ‘born that way,’ the most common mistake people make in interpreting my work. Nor did I locate a gay center in the brain.”

“Since I looked at adult brains, we don’t know if the differences I found were there at birth or if they appeared later.” (Nimmons, 1994).

Surprisingly, while the mainstream media provided substantial coverage for Levay’s research, a similar gesture was not replicated when recent research showed that the media’s interpretation of Levay’s research was flawed (Leonard, 2005). The other major evidences given in support of the biological argument are not markedly different, a litany of half-truths, often times misinterpreted by the mainstream media.

Is there Really a Gay Gene?

Of all the studies generally put forward as evidence of a biological basis for homosexuality, Dean Hamer’s genetic study arguably enjoys the most mention. In this study, Hamer and his team asserted that a stretch of DNA located at the tip of the X chromosome is responsible for male homosexuality. If successful and widely accepted, the research would provide conclusive and irrefutable evidence for the claim that homosexuality in men is actually caused by a “gay gene”.

This would imply homosexual orientation in gays is a natural, normal and involuntary feeling triggered by certain genes in the body. In its desperation to provide undeniable proof for the ‘homosexuals are born that way’ argument, the media in its characteristic fashion latched onto this ‘new discovery’ and gave it unprecedented publicity. It was victory at last for the numerous gay rights movements, or so it seemed.

Just like similar studies in the past, this new finding too crumbled like a pack of cards under rigorous scientific tests and scrutiny. The first person to pick holes in this widely acclaimed new discovery was no less a personality than Yale University’s renowned scientist, Dr. Neil Risch, the very man who invented the method used by Hamer and his team in their genetic study.

“Hamer et al suggest that their results are consistent with X-linkage because maternal uncles have a higher rate of homosexual orientation than paternal uncles … however, neither of these differences is statistically significant,” Dr. Risch wrote (Risch, 1993).

In an attempt to validate his claims, Risch and his colleagues replicated Hamer’s study and their findings were revealing to say the least. According to these researchers, “it is unclear why our results are so discrepant from Hamer’s original study. Because our study was larger than that of Hamer et al, we certainly had adequate power to detect a genetic effect as large as was reported in that study. Nonetheless, our data do not support the presence of a gene of large effect influencing sexual orientation at position Xq28.” (Rice et al, 1999).

Rattled by sustained criticisms of his study, Hamer was apparently humbled and left with no choice but to acknowledge the limitations of his findings.

“The pedigree study failed to produce what we originally hoped to find: simple Mendelian inheritance. In fact, we never found a single family in which homosexuality was distributed in the obvious sort of pattern that Mendel observed in his pea plants,” he admitted.

Since homosexuality is not a result of some special genes in the body as often erroneously reported in the media, the million dollar question is: what causes homosexuality? Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, co-founder of US-based National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) proffers an explanation.

“Homosexuality is most likely caused by a combination of developmental, social and (in some cases) biological factors,” he told “Developmentally, we most often see a failure to identify with the same-sex parent, and emotional isolation from same-sex peers.”

Explaining further, he mentions that the biological factors would be those that make a person grow up to feel less gender-identified. Known for the great influence it exerts on virtually all spheres of human behavior, the environment is yet another factor that plays a key role in shaping an individual’s sexual orientation. This includes the influence of family and peer relationships, as well as the media.

Yet another important fact, though rarely mentioned, is an individual’s choice in developing a sexual preference. In the words of Camille Paglia, a lesbian activist, “there is an element of choice in all behavior, sexual or otherwise,” and people can choose how they respond to unwanted homosexual attractions.

Researchers and medical experts might be divided on the actual causes of homosexuality; they might even have divergent views on its classification as a mental illness or otherwise. But what is scientifically clear is that the hyped idea of a single master gene that makes people homosexual is farfetched.

According to a child trends report, research clearly demonstrates that family structure matters for children, and the family structure that helps children most is a family headed by two biological parents in a low-conflict marriage. There is thus value for children in promoting strong, stable marriages between biological parents (Byrd, 2008).

Another cause for concern is the harm caused to homosexuals themselves.

“Anal sex is very damaging to the body and, I believe, to the psyche as well; it introduces more pathogens, because it misuses a bodily organ. Encouraging homosexual behavior will increase bisexual experimentation and distort our culture’s understanding of healthy gender roles,” he explained, adding that clients repeatedly complain that a gay lifestyle is unsatisfying and maladaptive for them.

Extensive medical evidence supports greater rates of medical disease among homosexuals. For instance, homosexual behavior has been identified as the major means through which the AIDS epidemic is transmitted in the United States. Furthermore, the rate of anal cancer infection is 10 times higher than that of heterosexual males (Byrd, 2008). Similarly, lesbians have higher rates of Hepatitis B & C, bacterial vagirosis, heavy cigarette smoking, intravenous drug use and alcohol abuse.

Considering the huge threats posed by same-sex marriage, it is expedient to nip this dangerously growing trend in the bud. If left unattended, the negative effects of same-sex marriage will not be limited to the participants alone, but the society at large will equally bear the brunt.

It is encouraging to note that people with homosexual orientation can actually be helped to change such orientation to a heterosexual one. Nicolosi offered the following advice.

“I believe our bodies tell us who we are, and that we were designed for heterosexuality, not for homosexuality, which distorts our true nature. The client can be helped to see how he or she really is connected to his or her biological gender, and we can help him break down the ‘mysterious’ image of the unavailable same-sex person that cause him to romanticize his own sex. People can reduce their unwanted attractions significantly, and develop their opposite-sex attractions to a degree varying from person to person, through therapy.”


Herek, Gregory. M. Facts about Homosexuality and mental health. (2009).

Byrd, D.A. Homosexuality: innate and Immutable? What Science Can and Cannot Say. (2010). Liberty University Law Review. Volume 4, Number 3

David Nimmons. Sex and the Brain, 15 Discover 64, 66 .(1994).

Sax, L. Why Gender Matters 208. (2005)

Neil Risch, Elizabeth Squires-Wheeler & Bronya J.B. Keats. Male sexual orientation and genetic evidence. (1993). 262 SCIENCE 2063, 2064

George Rice, Carol Anderson, Neil Risch & George Ebers, Male Homosexuality: Absence of Linkage to Microsatellite Markers at XQ28. (1999). 284 SCIENCE 665,667

Byrd, Dean. A. Conjugal Marriage Fosters healthy human and Societal Development. (2008). what’s the Harm? University Press of America.



Let me add the benefit of my time as a student and then resident in the UK-and I live in Kampala now. The first thing that I discovered about UK-born,white, English undergraduates was that all of them did holiday or weekend job to support themselves-including the children of millionaires amongst them. It is the norm over there- regardless how wealthy their parents are. And I soon discovered that virtually all other foreign students did the same-the exception being those of us status-conscious Ugandans.

I also watched Richard Branson (owner of Virgin Airline) speaking on the Biography Channel and, to my amazement, he said that his young children travel in the economy class-even when the parents (he and his wife) are in upper class. Richard Branson is a billionaire in Pound Sterling. A quick survey would show you that only children from Uganda fly business or upper class to commence their studies in the UK. No other foreign students do this. There is no aircraft attached to the office of the prime minister in the UK-he travels on BA. And the same goes for the Royals. The Queen does not have an aircraft for her exclusive use.

These practices simply become the culture which the next generation carries forward. But there’s one core difference them and us (generally speaking). They (even the billionaires among them) work for their money, we steal ours!

If we want our children to bring about the desired change we have been praying for on behalf of our dear country, then please, please let’s begin now and teach them to work hard so they can stand alone and most importantly be content, and not having to “steal”, which seem to be the norm these days.

“30 is the new 18”, which seem to be the new age for testing out the world in Uganda now. That seems to be an unspoken but widely accepted mind set among the last 2 generations of parents in Uganda.

At age 18 years, a typical young adult in the UK leaves the clutches of his/her parents for the University, chances are, that’s the last time those parents will ever play “landlord” to their son or daughter except of course the occasional home visits during the academic year.

At 21 years and above or below, the now fully grown and independent minded adult graduates from University, searches for employment, gets a job and shares a flat with other young people on a journey into becoming fully fledged adults.

I can hear the echo of parents saying, well, that is because the UK economy is thriving, safe, well structured and jobs are everywhere? I beg to differ and I ask that you kindly hear me out. I am a UK trained Recruitment Consultant and I have been practicing for the past 10 years in Uganda. I have a broad range of experience from recruiting graduates to executive director level of large corporations. In addition, I talk from the point of view of someone with relatively privileged upbringing.

Driven to school every day, had my clothes washed for me, was barred from taking any part-time job during my A-levels so that I could concentrate on studying for my exams?! BUT, I got the opportunity to live apart from my parents from age 18 and the only time I came back home to stay was for 3 months before I got married!

Am I saying that every parent should wash their hands off their children at age 18?
No, not at all, of course, I enjoyed the savings that I made from living on and off at my parent’s house in London – indeed that is the primary reason for my being able to buy myself a 3 bedroom flat in London at age 25 with absolutely no direct financial help from my parents!

For me, pocket money stopped at age 22, not that it was ever enough for my lifestyle to compete with Paris Hilton ‘s or Victoria Beckham ‘s. Meanwhile today, we have Ugandan children who have never worked for 5 minutes in their lives insisting on flying “only” first or business class, carrying the latest Louis Vuitton ensemble, Victoria ‘s Secret underwear and wearing Jimmy Choo’s, fully paid for by their “loving” parents.

I often get calls from anxious parents, my son graduated 2 years ago and is still looking for a job, can you please assist! Oh really! So where exactly is this “child” is my usual question. Why are you the one making this call dad/mum?

I am yet to get a satisfactory answer, but between you and me, chances are that big boy is cruising around Kampala with a babe dressed to the nines, in his dad’s spanking new SUV with enough “pocket money” to put your salary to shame. It is not at all strange to have a 28 year old who has NEVER worked for a day in his or her life in Uganda but “earns” a six figure “salary” from parents for doing absolutely nothing.

I see them in my office once in a while, 26 years old with absolutely no skills to sell, apart from a shiny CV, written by his dad’s secretary in the office. Of course, he has a driver at his beck and call and he is driven to the job interview.

We have a fairly decent conversation and we get to the inevitable question-so, what salary are you looking to earn? Answer comes straight out- UGX 2,000,000.
I ask if that is per month or per annum.

Of course it is per month. Oh, why do you think you should be earning that much on your first job?

Well, because my current pocket money is UGX 1,000,000 and I feel that an employer should be able to pay me more than my parents.

I try very hard to compose myself, over parenting is in my opinion the greatest evil handicapping the Ugandan youth. It is at the root of our national malaise.

We have a youth population of tens of millions of who are being “breastfed and diapered” well into their 30s. Wake up mum! Wake up dad! You are practically loving your children to death! No wonder corruption continues to thrive. We have a society of young people who have been brought up to expect something for nothing, as if it were a birth right.

I want to encourage you to send your young men and women (anyone over 20 can hardly be called a child!) out into the world, maybe even consider reducing or stopping the pocket money to encourage them to think, explore and strive.
Let them know that it is possible for them to succeed without your “help”.

Take a moment to think back to your own time as a young man/woman, what if someone had kept spoon feeding you, would you be where you are today?.
No tree grows well under another tree, children that are not exposed to challenges, don’t cook well.

That is why you see adults complaining, “my parents didn’t buy clothes for me this Christmas”, ask him/her how old they are-30+.
Because of the challenges we faced in our youth, we are where and what we are today, this syndrome-my children will not suffer what I suffered is destroying our tomorrow.

Deliberately reduce their allowance or mum-don’t cook on Saturday till late afternoon or evening, do as occasion deserve.

Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.-( Henry Ford) .
Hard work does not kill, everything in Uganda is going down, including family settings. It is time to rebrand our children, preparing them for tomorrow. We are approaching the season in Uganda where only the RUGGED, will survive. How will your ward fare?

If the present generation of Ugandan pilots retire, will you fly a plane flown by a young Ugandan pilot, If trained in Uganda? People now fly first class, who cannot spell GRADUATE or read an article without bomb blast! Which Way Uganda!, Which Way Ugandans!!

Is this how we will ALL sit and watch this country SINK?

Pls forward to as many parents as you know


“I told foreign leaders that this bill was brought up by a private member and I have not even had time to discuss it with him. It is neither the Government nor the NRM party. It is a private member,……………..It is my judgment that our foreign policy is not managed just by some individuals. We have our values and our stand, historically and socially, but we need to know also that our partners we have been working with have their systems………………….the gay community in New York organized a rally and invited then President Bill Clinton.In that rally, about 300,000 homosexuals attended. I challenge you. Who of you, MPs, has ever had a rally of 300,000 people, other than me? Even for me, it is not often that I get those numbers.This is a foreign policy issue and we have to discuss it in a manner that does not compromise our principles but also takes care of our foreign policy interest”- President M7(12th January, 2010)

Are African attitudes towards sex to blame for homosexuality and the state of Mulago Hosp?

The British built that Hospital for you. After 50 years you should have built at least another 10 hospitals of that size. The colonialists started the foundation of that hospital in 1955 and it was completed in 1962. It is a pathetic situation!!.

The British built that Hospital for you. After 50 years you should have built at least another 10 hospitals of that size. The colonialists started the foundation of that hospital in 1955 and it was completed in 1962. It is a pathetic situation!!.

Are African attitudes towards sex fueling homosexuality in Uganda? Put differently, would liberal attitudes as is the case in the West where girls and boys are encouraged to have boyfriends and girlfriends openly at an early age curb the homosexual desire in Ugandan teenagers?

We are trying to think the how part: how can Uganda curb homosexuality apparently in single sex schools? I am asking you to reflect and weigh in on this sensitive issue. Is African culture which forces teenagers to pretend that they do not have sexual feelings unwittingly doing more to encourage homosexuality among Ugandan youth? Would encouraging teenagers-at say 16-to freely bring home their boyfriends and girlfriends be the solution to homosexual desires?

In other words, is the desire for women respectability harming Ugandan youth? Is homosexuality the unintended consequences of harsh African cultures that suppress sexual feelings? By respectability I mean the double standards in African cultures where young men can go out and date for ‘experience’, but the girls are not allowed to date/have sex outside marriage. How can Ugandan society save its children from homosexuality?

Not long ago, I was at a conference hosted by medical anthropologists and there was consensus that HIV/AIDS in Africa would not be that bad had African cultures been good at talking about sex. They cited a community in Southern Africa-Kungu people -who are very free with sexuality and sex education. Homosexuality is unheard of. Why? Because the teenagers can always quench their sexual desires the heterosexual way. Teenage pregnancies are very low. Why? Because the girls and boys respect nature and take precaution. HIV/AIDS is very low? Why? Because teenager have been taught about its dangers. I tied foreign aid partly to blame for homosexuality?

This is heavy lifting but we cannot pretend any more. How can African cultures reverse the menace? Let me say something about the accusations that single sex schools are to blame. The implication is that students in mixed schools are getting it. Not sure about that. I was in a single sex boarding school for over 10 years, but never heard any of that stuff. Sure there was bullying but to make the leap that bullying leads to homosexuality is wrong.

Secondly, Stop blaming Mulago and ask some tough questions. How many of you would feel comfortable in a house meant for 4 or 6 to suddenly be forced to occupy 20 people? That is what Mulago is going through. Mulago is doing too much. It is doing too much because Ugandans are producing too much and refusing to take personal responsibility. Yap. Yes that is what you get when you put quantity or faaa/bure above quantity. Folks at the rate Ugandans are producing; it will take a lot of money to just keep pace.

This business of cost then benefits later must be checked. Ugandans must stop doing things in reverse. If they don’t, trouble and yes, more misery awaits them. Mulago should be decongested but at the rate Ugandans are producing, Kampala may need 4 or even more district hospitals.



I doubt whether there is such thing as an ideal parent. We just do our best. God gives you the children and gives YOU the wisdom to know how to raise them. Just listen to that Holly Spirit/Ghost and/or how your parents did it.

Whatever you disapproved of better not repeat. We all do our best, that is all. Parenting gets even harder when we have to work two three jobs to make a living and barely have time to spend with the young ones. Somehow we do it.You are a great parent and your children are blessed to have YOU. Remember we have many Ugandan kids with no parents? Just keep on doing your best and change whatever you do not want. Our children learn from us and we also learn things from them. Let us all live, laugh and love.

During my time of raising children, I established order in the home. For example, when the children came from school, first expectation was a snack, then school homework.The adult present was in charge to answer all questions and help out. After that they could go and play. When it came to dinner time, they ate what I provided. I did not provide what they loved, but what was healthy and they had to eat it. Then they had turns in dishes.

We had a dishwasher that I never used because I wanted the children to learn responsibility.We all sat in a meeting and determined how to hold the one who does not do what they are supposed to do responsible.I accepted input, but my word was final.One of the things we did is to talk to someone who does something wrong the first time. No yelling, talking and listening to what the one defiant had for a reason to fail performing. Second time was also a verbal warning. The Third one was KIBOKO, and I kept it where it was visible; so if anyone was thinking of defying they looked at its size and re-thought and did what they had to do.

Amazingly, I never had to use it on them, because they did what they had to do when they had to do it. I did not even have to warn once. Three children did what they had to do.We had family meetings to listen to each other and figure out how to improve our lives, because times change and needs change.By opening up the possibility of using Kiboko, I never had to use it.But If I had to use it;I would explain why I am using it to tell the child why they were going to be beaten.

You also do not slap the face etc, you beat the buttocks. At least that is how it was in my family. Slapping can result in head injury and look like abuse. Also a parent never yells at a child you talk to them respectfully with dignity because you got the power. Yelling belittles a parent. It is always advisable to call the child sit in a place and talk about what is bothering you the parents about his/her behavior. It is also not right or proper for husband and wife to be yelling at each other especially in front of children. Parent discussions are supposed to be in a private place with dignity not demeaning attitude and children should never hear parents fight. Those children will model what you the parents do. To this day I do not know how to yell because my parents never allowed that or did it.

Have a great and productive new week! Happy Parenting!

Assumpta Mary Kintu.

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