When the child leaves the nest

We were in the car today having a random conversation when Ethan touched on the subject of growing up. His exact words go like this:

Ethan: Daddy, when I’m 22 I’ll be married dy is it?
Darling: No, when you’re 22 you’ll be working.
Ethan: How long must I work before I can get married?
Darling: At least 3 years.
Ethan: Owh.. okay. I wanna buy house so I can get married and stay with my wife.
Me: You want to stay with your wife? What about Mommy then? The house’s gonna be so quiet then.. 
Ethan: Good-lah liddat. I stay outside, we no need to fight anymore.
Me: (heartache. Suddenly realised that we have been arguing a lot lately)
Me: What about your toys then? Who’s gonna play with them?
Ethan: I’ll bring them along to my new house and my wife and I can play them together..


Ethan: When I stay outside with my wife, I’ll come visit you all sometimes.
Darling: Will you come often?
Ethan: What’s ‘often’?
Darling: Many, many times.
Ethan: NO. We will visit you all once a month, just like how you all visit your mommy and daddy now.
Darling and I: *look at each other, speechless*
Darling: What about you and your wife come live with us?
Ethan: Nevermind. We will stay outside. But you and Mommy can come visit us if you like.
Me: You gonna welcome us when we come?
Ethan: Yes, I’ll buy the “WELCOME” mat and put at my door.
Me: -.-
Ethan: Mommy, don’t be sad okay? You can play with Daddy. Nobody gonna fight and make you angry anymore.
Me: *tears flowing freely*

Darling: Ethan, what if your wife doesn’t speak English?
Me: Ethan, make sure you find a wife that speaks English okay?
Ethan: Don’t worry Mommy. I’ll teach YOU chinese then.
Darling: You gonna teach Mommy to speak Chinese and not your wife to speak English?
Ethan: Yes, so Mommy can speak to her.

That must be the SADDEST conversation we’ve had with Ethan! It’s scary to learn from his conversation that he’s shaping his future based on what Darling and I do on our daily basis. We are his role model and he’s gonna treat his wife just as how Darling treats me (which is good) but he’s gonna treat us just like how we treat our parents esp my in-laws :'(

As I write this post, tears are still flowing freely. I know he is innocent and is saying all those based on his observation of us but somehow, it hurts to know that that is how he sees us. It hurts because I know, deep down inside of me, what he sees of me is indeed.. very TRUE! :'(

About the Author: Merryn Tan

22 Comments + Add Comment

  • //

    Don’t be too upset lah, Kids just say the damnedest things! LOL. Anyway, things will change when he grows up. Actually, it’s not so bad that Ethan wants to Iive outside. Sometimes it’s better especially if you and his wife cannot get along : )

  • //

    But maybe you could have told Ethan the reason you visited your in laws once a month is because they were staying far away, and if he were to stay near, he should visit you every week LOL!

  • //

    You’re right that in Ethan’s head, he is just mimicking what you and your hubby appear to be doing. But he doesn’t understand the reasons for it.

    So don’t take it to heart.

    If anything, consider yourself a good parent that you’ve manage to become a positive role parent.

    And, if it’s any consolation, my mother told me as I was growing up that once I get married, I should move out. Haha So that she and her ‘daughter-in-law’ won’t fight. At least you’re not chasing your son out!

  • //

    Muahahahahaha!!!! What goes around comes around!

  • //

    Awww..stil got time to change. The little ones took us as example. In a way it’s true too. My dad used to work outside and come back every weekend. I’m following his pattern now!

  • //

    ommy sobs sobs** but who’s gonna be his future wife will be lucky luuu…

  • //

    It’s not too late for a change now. Pay a visit to Ethan’s grandparents when you got time. I’m sure Ethan will appreciate it and this will change.

  • //

    Heart breaking :-(

  • //

    Dont take it so seriously la.. play along with him.. hehe..
    he’s still so young, there’s many things ahead that will change his perception :)

  • //

    Merryn, better not “fight” with him so often… discipline a child and not to treat him as an equal… maybe this helps… I am still learning too… not to worry.. as he grows up, he will understand his mom’s love…

  • //

    Oh no…….i am 22 this year and i am not married (no gf pun lah) nor am i working. Buy Ethan some toys and bribe him and he’ll change his mind LOL but a kid’s words shall never be taken real

  • //

    he is very observing in the details hah.. anyway, you can show him to change if he has made you both his role model.. yes, after years following my dad back to my grandma’s place, now we each weekend, will surely get together with mum even we stay together…

  • //

    oh my… this is funny and saddening at the same time :(

  • //

    well, i guess this is what parents need to be prepared for. He’s still young so it’s a long way to go. Anyway, I was a bit amused by the way he said that he will buy the WELCOME matt to welcome u and ur husband… haha… kids…

  • //

    I have think of this issue long time ago when chatting with friends. I guess it’s better not to stay with my children when they get married in future. Perhaps a gang of friend should buy a bungalow and stay together hahaha.

  • //

    aww! kids are still young right now, they can still learn, and change in future. don’t be sad :(

  • //

    your son sounds like such a matured young man. it’s endearing that he has these kind of conversations with you guys. i watched an episode on “keeping up with the kardashians” in which bruce jenner told his wife that parents are leaders by examples and it’s really very true. how you act and every thing that you do (no matter how small) is moulding your child’s psyche every day that he watches you.

  • //

    I have difference opinion with u…
    When my kid grow up I will let him go freely…
    I want to spend more time with my wife when my kid is independent..
    They have their own life n I want to spend some relaxing time with my wife…
    Cheers no need to be sad…

  • //

    that’s why people said have a daughter is way a lot better :P
    But parents like us will expected this will happen soon or later right? Children will leave us & have their own life~ *hugs*

  • //

    This is a such good post. The kid is a reflection of the parents. I believe in this.

  • //

    LoL.. No problem la Sis Merryn, I live in (i should count em as a bit problematic family) but still I grew up being a different person.. Just train him how to make his own decision.. But, trust me, just visit ur elderly more frequent, as I think, that’s the only things that passed on to me.. :p..

  • //

    This must have been terribly heart breaking for you and your hubby. But yes, kids do look up to their parents and closest of relatives as a guidance on how to act as they are older. Ethan is still young, you could still save this! Pay his grandparents some visits, speak to him with patience and just be the amazing mother you already are. He will understand. :)

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MeHome is where MY heart is.
I am a mother to two boys; Ethan and Ayden and a wife to Darling William. I'm a stay at home mum who blogs to break the monotony of life and to avoid feeling jaded. Would love to get to know all the Super Mommies and Daddies and Babies or Singles out there with the hope that we can learn more from each other. Most of all, I am a happy person, and I hope YOU are too.

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