I wrote about my thoughts on pushy parents last month, after being inspired by an article in the Daily Mail. I also shared my views and beliefs that every baby is a born genius which several readers have quoted and shared in their forums.
Lots of readers have emailed me their thoughts and quite a few local and overseas bloggers have also made reference to my posts in their own blogs. Thank you, all of you, for sharing and passing this on.
With a bit more time on hand, I finally googled more and found the original article that E brought to my attention. It is the part written by Alice Thomson that prompted me to think more.
I think it is part of the Asian culture to be more 'pushy' parents than our Western counterparts, especially when it comes to our children's education.
I know countless Chinese and Indian expats living in Singapore who are extremely competitive and pushy, if I may say so, of their kids' preschool education. Many successful Chinese and Indian professionals I worked with before, also come from middle-class families back home with very pushy parents.
Despite the negative connotations associated with the adjective 'pushy', the wiser older generations which had suffered understood that the ticket out of poverty is education. So they push their kids to do better than they did.
My dad did the same to us. He was a pushy dad, whom I openly rebelled against. But years later, as a successful working adult earning good money, I realised and appreciated his wisdom. As a parent now, I understand his love even more.
I still remember the days when he would sit with me after a hard day's work, making sure that I had learnt some new English words every day. I was only 5! Back in my days, there was no Nursery and many kids didn't even attend Kindy. So most kids only learnt their alphabet at age 7. I was more advanced than most by the time I entered Primary 1.
In my teens, I used to tell myself that it was all my own credit that I earned scholarships (based on merit) and burseries (because we were poor) yearly from Primary 1 to Secondary 4. When I opted to go to Polytechnic instead of the college for financial reasons, I bagged another scholarship to pay for my school fees. I was also awarded a big scholarship afterwards for my degree course. So basically, all my 16 years of education were paid for.
A few years ago, during one of my year-end reflections when my dad just passed away, I realised I wouldn't be who I am without him. Especially how he was like in my preschool and primary years. I may not have inherited any 'clever' genes, but he was the one who made the biggest difference in pushing me to be diligent, self-motivated and to always aim high. He taught me to be ambitious, to aim for the stars, so that one day, I will reach the moon.