Father Sez

From and to parents - parental advice to our children on personal financial management and life.
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Our children – just when should we let go?

Friday November 14th, 2008 by fathersez

I got this picture from a great article on helicopter parents and the feeling of “kidsickness”. Though my elder two girls are certainly not kids anymore, I loved the article and this picture.

My wife and I have 5 children. 4 girls and a boy.

The first two are girls 22 and 21, and have completed their university degrees, whilst the younger three are still in school. 

Lately I have been wondering quite a bit of just where and when parental handholding stop and the children should be allowed to make their own footprints in the sands of their lives.  My wife and I have brought up our kids with the best of what we could afford. Naturally this has been far better than what my wife and I personally went through.

Though the two elder girls are adults now, we just can’t help seeing them as the little girls they were not that long ago. So there is a fair amount of interference in their lives from me. 

I did a little inventory of the plus points the girls had.     

-         The girls have finished their tertiary education without any study loans hanging over their heads. 

-         They already have an emergency fund built up. 

-         They do not have to support us or their younger siblings for the time being. 

-         They have already been given some basic knowledge of the need for their own personal financial planning, as well as goal setting. 

-         They are sensible, stable and responsible girls, and have a healthy fear of God. 

With all these, I think they have a great head start over very many of their peers all over the world.  

So shouldn’t my wife and I just let go and let the girls set out in their lives? Stop dictating what the girls should do? And stop worrying that without our constant guidance (interference???) they’ll be making mistakes.  

Thinking back of my own situation, my parents stopped quite early because that was all they could do or afford. I have no idea how my parents felt when they could not give their children many of the stuff other kids were getting from their parents. I got a lot better than my brothers and sister because my elder brother took over the task of looking after me.  

The time of the year when the girls and I sit and discuss their goals for the next year is approaching. Though they have already started to withhold some of their goals from me; I still look forward to this time of the year. 

I have made up my mind that it is time for me to let go. Time for me to be just there if they need me. Time for them to make their own plans and start living their lives. Time for them to learn that sooner or later they’ll have to do this anyway, and that they might as well start now.   

After all, my parents and eldest brother did let go of me. Though I made my fair share of mistakes in life, (perhaps even more than my fair share), my life turned out not too bad.  

I suppose, today, as I make this decision, will be counted as a landmark in my life.  Maybe there might be a small feeling of emptiness. At least, by the grace of God, I still have my 3 younger kids’ lives to interfere in.   

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One Comment for “Our children – just when should we let go?”

by MissXynix1805
On November 14, 2008
At 2:16 pm

its okay if u want to let go.but i dont want to let go both of my parents.hehehe.

malam ni kita watch movies together okay~

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