Tuesday, May 26, 2015Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Seriously Kidding

Letting the kids into the 'wild'

Published on May 25, 2014 12:00 PM

A friend of mine says she calls her 11-year-old son from the office every day to order him outside.

"What are you doing?" she would demand over the phone. "Watching TV? Go out and play!"

When she told me this, my eyes goggled. I am the opposite. I freak out at the thought of my two sons, eight and four, running around under the searing sun. When the Supportive Spouse pulls on his trainers, tucks a basketball under his arm and heads for the door with our boys, I'd be yelling like a harpy: "No one gets hit in the face by a ball, is that understood? If anyone gets a nose bleed or a scar, basketball is SO OVER! AM I CLEAR?"

On my watch, the kids are - if I am honest with myself - under a sort of house arrest. They are escorted to school and back, then spend most of their day cooped up in our flat, forbidden to do any "dangerous" things such as horsing around on the stairs, swinging from banisters or playing catch indoors (too many sharp edges they might knock into).

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!