A Singaporean kid's thoughts and troubles

By Brine127

Singapore has all along been labelled as a stressful and competitive country, and I think we as Singaporeans all know it's true. I just want to share some personal troubles and thoughts I have about the education and living here.

Firstly, schooling itself is already a big competition. I think we all know how stressful students who gone through the PSLE were, especially the ridiculous expectations from parents and the stereotype about 'neighborhood' schools from the society. And we are not yet talking about the O levels (or N levels), something which I have not personally experienced and thus not daring to comment anything about it, but I already know how tough and stressful it is going to be. However, this isn't really my point.

As a Singaporean student, we spend at least 6-7 of hours in school per day. And once we start to add up time dedicated to co-curricular activities, one could easily be spending 11-12 hours in school, twice or thrice a week. The rest of the days in a week where we get to be released in the afternoon (say 2 or 3pm), it will (quite often) be taken up by supplementary classes, meetings or consultations with teachers. After all these, we come back home at night, and only to face piles of homework which are expected to be completed in a short span of time. There are also tuition classes arranged by parents often.

Recently, all these things have really been taking it's toll on me. I start to find myself lacking time to even relax or take a breather. I find myself lacking time to get a life, chat with friends, meet up and hang out, or even get to do things I like. I start to lose joy in life.. If at this age I'm already feeling so overloaded by these things, I can't imagine how life would be when I grow up. Eventually I'll reach a point where I have to use results to compete for seats in a local university. Things are highly priced over here; we can work 10-20 years to fully pay for an apartment, not to mention fighting for jobs, feeding a family, and the list goes on.

Going back to the topic, Singapore's education may be one of the best, but as someone in the midst of it, I've felt so much stress, competition and suppression, to the extent that life has kinda lost it's meaning for me. I no longer get to relax, enjoy and live my life, and judging and hearing regarding what is going to come when I grow up, I do not think i will get to relax, enjoy and live my life in the near future either. So then, what is the point of living my life?

Even though not everyone has the same views about this, I am pretty sure some people would feel the same way as me (from talking to friends, families and so on). I hope I could receive advice as I guess I've really nowhere else to voice my views. Thanks for reading and I hope I could seek thoughts from you guys.

This post was first published over at Reddit on 7 November 2014.You may wish to leave words of advice for this young author on the page itself.


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