Quantcast
Latest Stories

Emily’s Post

Should they work overseas and be away from kids, confused mom asks

By

DEAR EMILY,

My husband and I are planning to work overseas, for higher wages of course. But we have two kids, aged 4 and 2, who I think are too young to be left without our personal guidance. My husband is unaware of my uncertainties because this will only start a quarrel.

He says technology will make it easier to communicate constantly with the kids. He’s actually desperate to leave, blinded by the money we stand to earn abroad. We started a sari-sari store last year which closed after only 10 months, because it didn’t earn “big” enough, he said. He has no patience for slow growth.

Now, we have just enough to cover our monthly utilities; our “savings” are spent on house repairs and medical bills. I have even tried to buy cheaper brands of milk for my kids, only to spend my savings on medicines! Though I have my parents to take care of my children, I don’t think I will be at peace if anything happens to them. Yes, I am paranoid.

My husband thinks that if we both work abroad, our double income will cut the time we will spend away from our children. Between the two of us, I will also get a better paying job, since I am a licensed professional here.

CONFUSED MAMA

It is definitely hard to ignore the seductive call of the unknown and the promise of that elusive, only-in-my-dreams wealth. The mesmerizing images are so intoxicating that everything else around you becomes a blur and the collateral effects are obliterated.

Who cares if the children don’t grow up with the guidance and warmth of their parents around them? The latest toys, gadgets, easy access to expensive food, and whatever else that could only be dreamed about, are now within affordable reach—and mistakenly thought to be more than enough to compensate for the parents’ absence.

Nothing wrong looking for greener pastures—if you’re single and have no emotional baggage to worry about. You can work 24/7 and earn that almighty foreign currency till you drop. After making that pile, come home when you’re ready to settle down and start a family.

Empty homes

But have you looked at the statistics on OFWs and the state of their family lives?

This column has received lots of e-mails lamenting the break-up of OFW families. How many grieving balikbayan OFWs return to empty homes because their spouses had run away, and their children had dropped out of school due to drug abuse, teenage pregnancy, or some of these kids deciding to just become bums and early pensioners?

But even as success stories also abound and, clearly, many lives improve from the sacrifices of these OFW mothers, fathers, sons and daughters, there are more failures and horror stories that eclipse the positive ones.

Think again

Try not to make it your goal to keep up with your neighbor’s good fortune. Try also not to aspire for unrealistic, pocket-draining expenses like enrolling your kids in private schools if you have to sell your souls in the process. There’s no shame in having your children attend public school or even finish a vocational course.

Despite getting a bum rap, public schools are good if parents are willing to go the extra mile and make their children study hard and do their homework diligently.

Think a thousand times before turning your back on your very young and impressionable kids to pursue this almost manic goal of amassing wealth by working abroad.

What makes your husband think that going abroad will solve your problems? Wealth does not only mean money. Health, love, and a strong sense of family are all worth more than gold.

Sometimes, that glow you see at the end of a very dark tunnel, flickering like a pile of gold, is actually just the light of an oncoming train.

E-mail emarcelo@inquirer.com.ph or emarcelo629@gmail.com.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Broken Family , Broken Marriages , child rearing , Family , Family Guidance , OFWs , Overseas Filipino Workers , PARENTING , Relationships , Working Abroad

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/IQLFTBIJPDUKN3NJBAXRHX73BI BobetB

    Life is too short. At the end of the day what is most important money or family? Of course we need money for the family, not the other way around. When this life is over what is left is the memory. But if you are away what is you memory of your children? NONE. Can you bring money to the next life? But the memory of your children growing will be left with you til etenity!



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  2. Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  3. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  4. This is not just a farm
  5. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  6. Clams and garlic, softshell crab risotto–not your usual seafood fare for Holy Week
  7. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  8. Moist, extra-tender blueberry muffins
  9. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  10. Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  1. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  2. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  3. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  4. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  5. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  6. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  7. Boots Anson-Roa to wed in Eddie Baddeo
  8. Prince William fuels speculation of second royal baby
  9. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  10. This is not just a farm
  1. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  2. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  3. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  4. Manila in shock over model Helena Belmonte’s death
  5. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  6. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  7. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  8. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  9. Sen. Angara: I thought Pia Wurtzbach gave a good answer
  10. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?

News

  • Holy fire ceremony draws thousands in Jerusalem
  • Tanchanco, former NFA head; 83
  • Pope seeks to bring faith to ‘ends of the Earth’
  • Meteor shower to light up PH skies
  • Positive in UAE, returning Filipino nurse tests negative
  • Sports

  • Pacquiao top Mayweather contender
  • Rain or Shine, Ginebra clash for No. 6 spot
  • Ateneo eyes quarterfinal spot vs Benilde
  • Style contrast marks OneFC ‘Rise of Heroes’
  • ‘Pacquiao a great ambassador for basketball’
  • Lifestyle

  • Noli Yamsuan, Cardinal Sin’s ‘official’ photographer: ‘I could smell the aftershave lotion of the Pope’
  • Simplifying and lightening life
  • Where to go for Easter night-out
  • Joe de Venecia visits the Queen Mother of Cambodia
  • Fashionistas flock to designer’s wedding
  • Entertainment

  • Why ‘Noah’ can’t dock his ark at Philippine theaters
  • Acclaimed artist goes wild while on holiday
  • Believing in this mermaid
  • Missing Xian
  • Awarded TV couple brings Jesus’ life to the big screen
  • Business

  • Top-selling insurance agent opens her dream café
  • Connecting and transacting with one another
  • Building wealth for health
  • Why Mandaue Foam buys, rather than rents, space
  • A workplace of new possibilities
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Epiphany
  • Unpaid creditor vs distressed debtor
  • Moving on
  • From culinary desert to paradise
  • Response to China: ‘Usjaphil’
  • Global Nation

  • Asia seeks Obama’s assurance in territorial spats
  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
    Marketplace