Monday, April 30, 2007

Terengganu Trip. At 11.

My children....if only they can remain this young for a bit longer!

Have deleted the previous post as felt that it was unfair to my kids (and husband!) that their mom puts on the net all their shenanigans. Don't want to give the impression that they are less than they really are, which are, bright, cheerful, inquisitive, annoying, stubborn, sensitive, funny, children. Hard to know where to draw the line I guess..You don't want to be judged for your actions but you want to be honest as this is supposed to be a family update as well. How ah? Anyway this will always be our "home" and where I will put down the chaos that is our lives. As far as possible I will try not to embarrass anyone .. or if I have done, I will delete the post immediately.

Anyway today's hot topic is Nadine's impending trip to Terengganu. She has asked me a while back but we did not give an answer - and since she never followed up, I thought that she was not going. It turned out that her dad has signed the consent form, paid for her and therefore she is going this Friday.

Nadine's mother is slightly less enthusiastic about it. To tell you the truth, I do not want her to go. It's a 4 hour drive , she is going to be with her friends (she only knows them by name) and teachers, and she is going to spend two nights at this hotel called "Kenangan Hotel" which costs about RM75 a nite, and 3 days there visiting several spots including Pulau Duyung. She leaves on Friday at 7 am, she arrives on Sunday at 10 am (meaning she will leave Kertih at 6 am). She will be far far far from her parent's eyes and control. She is 11. I am not thrilled.

Risks: Bus unsafe. Driver too fast. Teacher not enough to look after kids. Teacher distracted. Kids distracted. Kids drowning at sea. Kids left behind. She gets sick. She gets lost. Food poisoning. Possible abduction and/or indecent assault . Ok ok I have left out UFO abduction.

Those are real risk (save for UFO- and even then...!) and I need to know how the school will mitigate them beFORE I say yes, Not just sign on the dotted line and pay up, woit.

Dad: It's a school trip. There will be teachers. When he was 11 he was already going off to Kuala Kangsar. She is going with friends. It's a school trip.

Dad and I had a heated debate about my (allegedly over)protectiveness vs dad's trust in her school to protect her. As her dad has paid and she is so looking forward to it, I was prepared to consider it (what to do?) as long as I am comforted by how many teachers are going, what are the steps they have in case of emergency, how are they going, who is driving etc. Hello, this is my daughter ok. She is not yet 12.

What we have here is 2 different upbringing coming to a clash when it comes to raising our kids- we have the dad who was brought up by teachers and friends, in a boarding school, whose idea of fun sounds really fun to a 10 year old but scares the heck out of me in this day and age, and then you have the mom whose first trip out of KL is to Kuantan with 8 other friends, at the age of 18. And that too with my friends trying to persuade my mom. Haa haa...

I don't want to be the overprotective mom here, but I do feel that she is too young now, and that there will be plenty of opportunity when she hits secondary school , to let her go on school trips. I mean, Terengganu IS far. Far from what , husband throws his hands up in exasperation. He cannot understand why I am mollycoddling our daughter. As long as she is not 12, I can't understand why he is not mollycoddling her. I don't want to keep her at home forever, but at least until she is over 13- Unreasonable ke?

I asked experts about this. Thanks to Mak B's TV show "Setiap Anak Permata Negara" I get the opportunity to pick the brains of academician, child psychiatrist etc. They tell me , let her go. She has to be independent. She wants autonomy. Which just goes to show...what do the experts know ha ha ha..One of them was single even ... she is still too young lah doctor...Does the person who went through 2 days worth of labour and plancenta abruptia and ventouse delivery for her get the last say? I think so.

My mom way way in Ireland, would probably say no, and I do not dare tell her for she will freak out. Definitely a NO. Sis in law tells me her dad would have also said NO. She is pondering the same question for her 10 year old's coming trip out of state. 10???Schools nowadays..I don't remember getting these trips when we were younger? The most "gah" was to some factory or other..!

This is a landmark issue. (Big deal nya...) it establishes how we discuss our kids' issues . Do we act unilaterally? Is it mom is always right or dad is always right? Shd dad be able to pay and sign consent without discussing with mummy? Yes if dad was a single parent. I say....Why must there be a "winner" or a "loser" in any argument/debate. We are both educated, I'm trying for a rational nego anything, you must suss out all risks right?? Talk it out..etc etc. We have 4 more to go and a myriad of other issues to get if we can't see eye to eye? I can't pull the "I gave birth to her therefore I get the final say" line EVERY time, right..(although I should be able to he heh heh...) So we need to basically agree that I am I mean agree on a compromise.

But in this case... husband's position is yes while mine is no, or rather..."Yes, if.." .. So here there has to be a winner or loser. So I cop out and I asked Nadine.

I explained that I hope she doesn't think I was trying to spoil her fun.. I hope she knows that I just want to find out that she is safe and can I speak to her teacher, if she really wants to go? In the end she said she doesn't want to go because she is actually worried about sleeping in the same room with strangers. Husband is v. annoyed as he thinks I have scared her! I think it's her unwillingness to upset me. I don't want her to go through that!

Now if I don't let her go I will look like the baddie. I genuinely berat to let her go me overprotective, call me anything but I really really think she can go next time.Or can I come over??? Sigh..let's call her teacher then.

Will let you know if dad wins on this one.


Anonymous said...

OMG! Let her go will you. I was 11, when I went with my then 8 year old sister camping with some group in Fraser's Hill for 4 nights!!!

By making her feel guilty, you are not giving her a chance.

Parents these days are ultra protective of their kids. How are the children supposed to grow up independently if we mollycuddle them all the time? I'm with Mr Dr. here.

It's my blunt two cents worth.


Superwomanwannabe said...

I am not mollycoddling her, Im merely delaying her trip for one (or 2) years....yeah agree that I should not make her feel guilty! Hope she doesn't! But she did say that its her dad's birthday and she does not want to miss that!

Anonymous said...

I beg to differ. Delaying her trip by one or two years actually translates into making her loose a chance of a trip with her friends in Year 6. You will never ever be able to turn back to clock to experience that. Many of her friends will move to different schools next year, and the memories of a trip in Year 6 will never be hers if she does not go.

MRSHUSiN said...

kak long... dont worry, insyaAllah, everything will be fine.

let her go, i say. mummy & daddy were like u too. when i was younger i begged them to let me go to tamannegara & they didnt let me. so i said nothing. but i wish i did. i feel that sometimes i very protected & tt made me too dependent sometimes.

i'm sure nadine will be thankful u let her go on the trip... bet she'll have soo much fun!!!
dont worry lah kaklong!

TRM said...

Aiyooo woman let the girl go lah - its not like its a school trip to France to see topless dancers or anything. Its T'ganu and if the worst is going to happen it could happen right in front of your home - its all fate and protecting her isnt going to prevent bad stuff from happening. Just pray, have faith and let go - it will be ok. And its not about you or dad winning - its about her and her self esteem.
And another thing - the girl is showing classic symptoms of the "elder child-guilt-wanna please the folks syndrome". Trust me I know.

Superwomanwannabe said...

TRM, FTM and Izan!

Allright allright allright allready! he he heh.! I get it i get it ...

But ....since the trip is abt 10 days before her mid term...jawapan nya masih tetap..tidak boleh heh heh- next time ler.....

But thanks for your views, guys....and THUSH , D is really lucky heh heh heh!!

Winter Sonata sure is different at 49 years old!

Believe it or not I am rewatching Winter Sonata.. ee geram betul I dengan si Yujin tu lah... she really was a wutz wasn't she? and...