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Parenting conflict

Why are you sending her away?

Oh dear. Am I a bad mother? I thought. My husband called out from the dining room as I was busy fixing the food for my second daughter in the kitchen. M planned to move in to her friend’s apartment near the UP campus. See, she’s taking summer classes coupled with daily singing rehearsals. I tell you, her schedule is crazy. Classes start at 7:00 AM and her rehearsals end at 10:00 PM. Driving from Makati to Quezon City was out of the question. It’s not the gasoline expense . My time is wasted because of our stupid traffic jams. I can do more productive work like fixing the house or letting my business grow instead of getting stuck in traffic. But no…our traffic is so bad that 3 hours of my daily life is wasted down the drain just driving to and fro Makati and Quezon City. Hiring a driver is out of the question. I can’t afford it. Besides, drivers need to rest too.

You know how tiring it is for me to drive back and forth. I said. She needs to be semi-independent. When I was her age, I had no mother to take care of me. I had to mother myself.

I lost my mom to breast cancer when I was in college and I learned to take care of my needs with a little help from my dad. My dad was the typical father who provided our financial needs but wasn’t too nurturing. So when my husband said that I was sending M away, I felt bad. Am I doing this because I don’t want to be inconvenienced? Or because she really needs to be closer to the campus? But my daughter sees how far we live and understands that with unpredictable rehearsal schedules, moving in with a friend was the better option. No, I shouldn’t feel guilty. But why did my hubby feel bad?

I think he will miss M’s vibrant personality that’s filled with animated conversations and laughter as they bond before bedtime. He will miss her singing voice as she vocalizes every morning like a song bird chirping in a happy tune. I know that he will miss her so much mid-week that he will pick her up from her rehearsals late at night and then wake up early in the morning just to drop her off to the campus.

I know my hubby so well because that’s what he did during M’s Freshman year.

6 thoughts on “Parenting conflict”

  1. awwww. he just not ready yet.

    i don’t think you’re being a bad mama at all. what you’ve decided is being practical and it would definitely help your daughter be more independent.

  2. i’m not a mom so i can’t give like an authentic opinion, but as a daughter, i don’t see this as being a bad mom. i think it’s great actually that you’re letting her go and “be independent” (sort of) because that’s something that we kids who grow up in manila are not really exposed to much.

    it’s the same way as my mom pushing me to go to grad school away from manila. she didn’t want me away from her, but she knew that i would grow most where i am now. i remember the first few weeks after she left me here and i was super homesick; she was asking me if it was wrong of her to push me to study abroad — did she force me, etc? and well i told her no; in fact pushing me to “move away” for some time is one of the best things she’s done for me 🙂

  3. dexie: That’s what I thought. I grew up to be independent so I thought I ‘d pass on that experience.

    Cris: Nice daughter perspective. I also pushed my eldest daughter in Ateneo to dorm during her first year . However, she didn’t quite like noisy roommates. she liked the peace and quiet so she resorted to car pool arrangement and stayed home during her second year. I just fetched my daughter from her apartment and she proudly reported that “I feel so street smart”. That was so nice to hear.

  4. I don’t think you should feel guilty. You’re just being practical and I understand how you want her to be independent. I myself also became independent early on because my mother left us to work in Canada when my sister and I were still in high school.

    I think I am more like your husband. I have a hard time letting go. And what a coincidence. My current post is about letting go. 🙂

  5. I’m not a mother either. But when I was in college, I wished that my parents allowed me to dorm or live in an apartment but they wouldn’t let me out of their sight. 🙂 When I finally moved out of the house at 32, my Mom was all teary-eyed. 🙂 I guess that’s just how parents are. I’m sure Marielle would appreciate it soon enough… that would also give her more time for activities and I’m sure that she’d enjoy the independence.

  6. Niceheart: Thanks for the reassurance. I know it’s hard to let go and I feel for my husband’s pain. hehe

    Toe: It’s hard the first time that they leave the house. I also felt sad and teary-eyed. My daughter is happy with her independence. Good thing 🙂

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