Mum was strict to me when young, but she meant well

By Lkxfm

My dad was laissez-faire and didn't really give 2 hoots about my grades. My mum was what some might call controlling. After witnessing my older sister (1 year my elder) fail Math and English in P1, she decided that she needed to prepare me for primary school while I was still in kindergarten. That meant poring over assessment books for about 2 hours every night.

In primary school, chapters from assessment books were assigned on top of completing school homework. That didn't change after I entered the GEP stream, which meant more school homework that was also getting increasing difficult to complete. Becoming a GEPer also increased her expectations I reckon. I scored in the mid 80s for Math in P4. It didn't matter that tests were considerably harder because they were crafted for "gifted" kids. It didn't matter that I was trying my darndest to cope with the sudden huge changes to my curriculum and environment. What stood out for my mother was the fact that I didn't perform as well as I did before, having typically attained 100s or 99s previously. She would go: "You didn't try your best, did you?". I honestly didn't know how to respond to that. How would she know what was my best? How would I know what was my best? "Best" was such a vague, intangible connotation. Playing computer games and surfing Facebook were frowned upon. Reading books on the other hand was very much encouraged; thank goodness I loved reading.

I made it to an IP school. She didn't have the expertise to teach me any longer, so the assessment books vanished. Expectations remained though. I began staying back in the library till 6pm almost every single day (unless there were CCA commitments) to study. didn't have a need for tuition, so I managed to save my parents quite a bit of money. Hanging out with friends was permitted, though I was expected to do it only occasionally and after exams, when there was a legitimate cause for celebration. An 8pm curfew was imposed. Not too bad, I'd would say. Straight As led to more expectations-more straight As. My mother practiced double standards. When my older sister scored Bs and Cs, she was showered with kind words of encouragement. Remarks such as "Why do you have a B for subject XX?" were reserved for me.

I do not resent my parents for anything. Mum was strict, but ultimately, she had my best interests in mind. I do wish she had tempered her expectations a little, because it was stressful trying to live up to them.

I have since successfully enrolled into a local medical school and given my personal desire to become a good doctor living a principled life, I guessed I turned out rather well.


Love is patient and kind... not demanding and nagging.

Hikikomori In S’pore And Why Young People Are ‘Imprisoning’ Themselves In Their Rooms

My grandmother who raised me was a walking nightmare