Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Repost

Some of you have read this post that I wrote on my other blog nearly two years ago. I thought I will just repost it here to see what all of you think about this.
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A spare and a carer

In the 60s, a young woman got married and soon after that, she was happy to learn that she was expecting a child for she would be looked down upon if she was barren. After 9 months, she was disappointed when she gave birth to a baby girl for as a Chinese, she was expected to bear a son to carry on the family's name. Never mind, she told herself, I will have another child and she did, the very next year.

She was fortunate that her next child was a son, the much needed child. With her main responsibility fulfilled, she concentrated fully on her job as a clerk, letting her mother-in-law take care of both her children. She was satisfied with her life.

After 6 years, her mother-in-law took her aside and told her sternly to have another child. One boy was not enough. There must be a spare. And being the dutiful daughter-in-law that she was, she conceived again and was lucky to give birth to a baby boy. Now my family is complete, she thought and she turned her attention back to her job, now as the chief clerk in the same company that she has worked for since she left school.

Another 9 years went by and this time it was her own mother who asked her to have another child. It had to be a girl, to take care of her during her old age for daughters take better care of mothers than sons, she was told. Being an obedient daughter, she conceived again and her prayers were answered, a baby girl was born and she resumed working, still as a chief clerk.

The day finally came when she retired as chief clerk after working in the same company for 35 years. For a few years after that she enjoyed herself by travelling around the world a bit.

Then her body failed her and she took to her bed. Her first child has her own family and children so she was too busy to take care of her. Her second child gave her two grandsons to carry on the family name but only visits once a year.

Lucky for her that she listened to her elders because although her two younger children were married but they chose to remain child free so the youngest daughter cooked for her and visited her as much as she could and her younger "spare" son moved back to live with her to look after her full time.

Now who would have thought that having a spare and a designated-to-be-her-old-age-carer baby girl would work out so well. Neither did she. She just had them to keep the two old ladies from pestering her. But in the end, it really did work out well. She was really pleased.
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32 comments:

  1. Oh, that means ... giving birth to 4 kids is a better option! :)

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    1. You have 3 so it is good enough also.

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  2. It all depends - some can have a dozen, none stayed back...leaving the poor old mum with a maid. They sent money and paid for everything, of course!

    I, for one, do not believe in depending on one's children to take care of me when I grow old. That is why it is important to be prudent and save enough for the time and yes, for me, it has come and I am getting on fine - not dependent on anybody in any way...and hope that I would just drop dead one fine day, not fall sick and be bedridden and helpless. For that, I pray!

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    1. I also pray that I would just drop dead one fine day without having to go through dementia.

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  3. Same as STP, it depends.. Girls are more "sai sum", and I believe they will takecare of the parents.. But boys also, like my hubby side, they are all very "sang sing" also, they also takecare parents type one wor.. It all depends the upbringing kua..

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    1. If your boys are like your husband, then you are very blessed indeed.

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  4. I would say this is just an individual case that cannot be generalized at large.. it is down to the individuals and not on whether the child is so called "designated" or "spare".. and I strongly disagree this "classification" actually, all children are children, there is no labels attached..

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    1. No labels are a correct outlook on this but it is the reason for having the child that is being discussed here.

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  5. Replies
    1. I remember your comments back then.

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  6. i read this before too. I would only say this kind of older generation mentality should be scrap off...Well, firstly the adult children might have their own responsibilities towards their own family/kid when grown up and can't fully rely on them to take care of their elder parent. Secondly, this is very depending on the upbringing, if the children wants to take care of their elder parent, it is voluntarily filial piety, not by enforcing such 'rules' that if the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd whatsoever child has to take care of them. And somehow, when i m old, i would admit myself to a 'old folks/retirement home' and i dun expect the younger generations to attend to my needs.

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    1. You are so brave! To check yourself into an old folks home.

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  7. I think I read this before. Was it you who asked me to read this huh? Did I comment anything huh?

    In the real world, sometimes it doesn't matter how many kids you have, if they are char siew, then they are char siew. Maybe when I have my own kids my mindset will change, but for now, I think I will be like angmohs. The moment my kids reach college, I will fob them off my home and let them make their own decisions and fend for themselves in life, while also not expecting them to fend for me in old age. Our current generation is too urbanized, we are doing exactly what the westerners are doing 20-30 years ago, so we should expect our social structure to mirror them too in due time.

    This is your story which involves you, isn't it? ;)

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    1. Don't think you comment anything back then. No lah, this is fiction.

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  8. Oh dear....I only have one shot at this....kekeke....since I only have one child! :D At the end of the day, it doesn't matter if you have one or four, if they're not brought up to be filial, then they just won't be.

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    1. I think some people who are brought up to be filial but they just can't do it, can't be filial.

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  9. Interesting, Is this story real or fiction? I always feel that we should not rely on our children to look after us when we are old. We have to prepare ourselves to be self-reliant financially and also keep ourselves fit mentally and physically. Of course, when it comes to health, no matter how careful you are, you can still fall victim to disease like cancer etc.

    Times have changed and extended families are very rare. Back in the old days, families lived under one roof and the old folks can rely on family members to take care of them. It is important to instill values in children and if they are taught well, they will grow to become responsible people and will care for their parents.

    But at the end of the day, the children will have their own lives - family and work commitments and it will be rather unfair to burden them. I don't have children and I am prepared to take care of myself and even if I did have children, I would not want to burden them. Checking myself into a retirement home when the time comes is not an issue at all.

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    1. Another brave one to check oneself into a retirement when the time comes

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    2. I don't mind if it's a retirement home too (those we pay good money for if one can afford it) but not an old folks home (there's a lot of difference). I know of this old lady whose children are all overseas and they send her to a retirement home and hired a maid to look after her 24/7 but, at the end of the day, she's a very lonely woman. I also read the statistics somewhere that senior people tend to have a shorter life span when sent to old folks home...and that's rather scary.

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    3. But if all children are overseas and the elderly is bed ridden, what are the choices? Lonely is really sad.

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  10. Haiyo how to have another child after 9 years?? Pengsan.

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  11. 4 is good, but in reality and economy now, got to think twice.

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    1. Be very thrifty then can have 4.

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  12. Great story sharing, anyway, the morale of the story is listening to elder folks. Some elder folks do gain my respect for their experience and thoughts. It is not a matter of how many kids, boys or girls to have. It is to listening carefully to old folks and you will be enlightened. This is just my own opinion.

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    1. Thanks! Great lesson you derived from this story.

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  13. This may be a fiction story but it could be real too. Now I am thinking whether I should blog about the many Hospice patients who have shared their stories before passing on. They are all sad stories with hopeless kids all the way otherwise I would not have been there as a care giver volunteer.

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    1. Please blog about it as a lesson to us.

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