Why Do You Kick Out Your Kids?

The other Sunday I was over to my Mother-in-law’s house for lunch, one of my brother-in-law’s asked me “Why Americans don’t let their children live with them, and force them to move out on their own?” This is from a man who has his son and his son’s wife, plus the son’s wife’s sister and his 2 Y/O Grand baby, all living with him. More so, he has his grown 24 y/o, college educated, unemployed daughter, (Yes, I paid for her schooling that she has yet to use) still living there at home, plus my favorite person, his 9y/o daughter or my niece, Shay-shay.

Kick 'em out of the nest!

Kick ‘em out of the nest!

This question is from a guy who earns less than P1, 500.00 per week. Granted his son has a fairly good job on Subic Freeport and contributes to the house. Plus his wife works at my house a few hours a day and makes P1, 200.00 per week. But that’s still a lot of people in a small house.

I asked if he was referring to my girls, who no longer live with us, or all Americans in general? He wasn’t quite sure, but I think it was about me.

Hanna & Chris Married 9 years

Hanna & Chris Married 9 years

Our oldest girl married her College sweetheart, who is from a well to do family, and she moved to her husband’s house, where they have a separate apartment to themselves, they never asked if they could live here with us. My daughter always knew that she could have, if she wanted to. Chris and Hanna have been married 9 years, they are still very much in love and I am happy and proud of them both. Chris is a great son-in-law.

If you’ve read any of my past articles, than you know our youngest daughter Ymir Thea is living her “Big Adventure” in Singapore, and it would be most difficult for her to commute from our house to work every day. Then I explained that when she worked on the Subic Freeport for five years, she did live with us, and I asked nothing from her in payment to do so. We just loved still having her here, and she knows she can come back anytime; her room is the same as she left it, and her damn cat is still here.

Bisaya/Cebuano Language Course
Ymir Thea living and working in Singapore

Ymir Thea living and working in Singapore

I think he misunderstood the “Kicking Out” part. I explained that I was raised to be an independent man by my parents, who provided me and my siblings with every tool required to be successful in life. It was I, who chose to go into the Navy vice college, though two of my brothers went to college, and we all knew that we could live at home, until we were ready to venture out on our own. (I did finish college in the Navy and on the GI Bill).

The “Rock” our parents provide to us, meant that we could go forth and live our own life, yet we all knew that if need be, we could come home with our tail tucked between our legs, and start again. But it just never happened. Now it’s my turn to be the “Rock”, and our girls know that we are here to help in anyway, and will bring them home if the need arises I don’t care how old they get to be.

It was never a parent’s job to support you forever, while one lies around watching TV and eating their food and vegging on their couch. When I was finished explaining that this is how we American’s raise our children that our kids go off on their own, seeking fortune and adventure. And hopefully we gave them what they needed to fulfill their dreams. I think my brother-in-law understood, albeit, he does not fully agree with it. To aid him, I pointed out that we all grew up subject to our local culture norms, and that there is no right, as well as there is no wrong way. It’s just who we are and where we’re from. If he ever moved to the U.S. he would be free to follow his culture and bring up his children in his own way, and never be forced to adapt to neither mine, nor me to his. As I’ve said before, if we were all thought the same, they’d only have made one type of car, and wouldn’t that be a boring place to live?

Post Author: Paul Thompson (262 Posts)

Paul Thompson; has resided in the Philippines since 1993, living close to Subic Bay. I’m married to a wonderful girl named Maria (AKA Mayang).Who is from Gordon Heights in Olongapo where she grew up with her Mom & Dad and seven siblings Our two daughters are both grown up and have left the nest, the eldest married to a wonderful guy named Chris, and they have blessed us with our granddaughter Heather Colleen Our youngest daughter and her husband Cecil have blessed us with a grandson named. Jayden Logan. I’m a retired U.S. NAVY Senior Chief after 22 years of active duty. After retirement from the Navy I lived for 7 years in Puerto Rico as a Night Club owner. Then Hurricane Hugo told me to find a new line of work, I was hired by Military Sealift Command and went back to sea in Asia as a Merchant Seaman for 10 years. After 30 plus years at sea I buried my anchor on a mountain in the Philippines and am now residing in Dinalupihan (or DinBat for short), Roosevelt, Bataan where we built our home. And last but not least, anything I writes will be pure "Tongue in Cheek "If anybody is offended, I'll lose no sleep over it, but here's a quick Mea Culpa in advance!


Comments

    • Paul Thompson says

      Jim;
      Ah the wonderful Jaguar, do you remember the Lucas electric parts on British cars? I sure do, on my 1958 Austin Healey Bug-Eye Sprite. I had to carry a British Electrician tucked in the boot every time I drove it. Does it still cost $1,800.00 to tune up the Jaguar V-12 as it can only be done by removing the Engine? But I’ll give you, that a XKE was the most beautiful car ever built.

      • Paul Thompson says

        Jim;
        BTW: Did you know that, from 1921 to 1931 there was a North American Rolls-Royce factory in Springfield MA. All left hand drive Rolls-Royce’s were manufactured there, until the depression hit.

        • Paul Thompson says

          Ian;
          I’m not the only one who holds Lucas in such high esteem. But I’ve never heard it put better than you just did.

          • ian says

            Paul- I have to admit that I did not coin the phrase – there used to be black t-shirts with that written on them ! lol
            Since I was born in England my parents were always pushing me to buy British cars . I will NEVER forgive them for that !! hahaha

            • Paul Thompson says

              Ian;
              Wherever it came from, it was so true. On my Bug Eye, I took off the SU carbs and used Weber’s. I switched the ground to negative, and replaced any thing Lucas with what ever I could find. I did keep every thing I took off so if a purest bought it from me, he could put it all back on. England produced some great looking cars, and were fun to drive, when you could.(lol)

              • paul says

                you ought to try a lotus, stands for lots of trouble usually serious….
                friend of mine had one many years ago, and decided to clock it, that is reduce the mileage on the car speedo thus increasing its value. so, he carefull removed the speedometer, carefully opened it to get at the numbers, and as he did so, a tiny piece of paper fell out.
                he opened it, it said in tiny letters, ” oh no, not again”

              • Paul Thompson says

                Paul;
                Thank you for cracking me up early on a Monday morning, with the odometer story. Snorting hot coffee through my nose onto my key board, was well worth the great laugh!

  1. says

    Hi Paul- You’ve hit the nail on the head, its about providing the tools for them to become independant but with the comfort of knowing their always welcome back should they need to do so. Mind you, they would have to contribute to the wellbeing of the household.
    Our two kids one in the UK and the another in Australia must have been influenced by our previous life style of always being on the move for employment reasons. On the other hand maybe their reason for staying so far away is so we as parents don’t know what their up to.
    The term ‘Kick’ in your heading seems a bit harsh, it would be better if it were ‘ Shove’ it seems a bit kinder and more PC hahaha!
    Regards.
    Jim.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Jim;
      I used the word Kick, because that was how the question was asked to me. And me being PC is a stretch at best. (lol) But over 30 years of coming to the Philippines I’ve found it was a common belief among Filipino’s. Even the people I met on-board ships thought our American parents sent us to join the Military Forces, well a few might have, and a few judges helped also. My main reason was I had to know what was beyond that next horizon or what was over that next hill. Aside the fact I hated winter.

      • says

        Hi Paul – I agree its all about the spirit of adventure and spreading their own wings. And I know that with our two they would only return to the nest if things got really bad for them.
        I must confess it gives us parents so much pride when they go out to that big wide world and become successful in their own right.
        Such is life and here’s to them for doing it.
        Regards.
        Jim

      • Randy W says

        Paul Thompson

        With these ecomomic times, you see alot of children coming back to the nest due to losing there jobs. I have no problem excepting them back because they are your children and you want to help them out if the need arises. I think they will be much more prepared for lifes problems be being independent and not relying on your parents for everything. It sounds like you did a good job with your girls. Well I hope you and your family have a nice Thanksgiving Day.

        • Paul Thompson says

          Hi Randy;
          I would gladly accept my kids back in to the fold if for some reason it was needed, and help them get ready to try it again. As the point was they tried it the first place and for none other than that, I’m proud! And a great Thanksgiving to you and yours!!!

  2. sugar says

    Hi Paul – Your brother in law is the typical Pinoy. Filipinos are so family oriented, that it is ingrained in our Pinoy culture that if possible, families live together including relatives. Because the family (and relatives) that stays together experience happiness and hardships together. And if problem arises, they can always count on each other.

    Your children (and relatives too..he he) are lucky to have parents like you as their “Rock.”

    • Paul Thompson says

      Sugar;
      I well understand the Pinoy point of view, I was asking my brother-in-law to understand that there were other points of view on this big round ball called Earth. My point to him was we were both correct. Had he ever been to a gathering in Cape Cod of the Irish Clan Thompson, he’d understand why all of us being together everyday would rock the world. What a party that would be!

  3. Dan says

    Nice read Paul…and my 2 cents worth here…I belive if you as parents have done your home work with your kids when they are growing up and they can go out in the big world and create their own future then the parents have done well. I think most parents that are real parents would always have the door open for their kids to come back if that need did arise. I think also that Aisan families are some what different in culture and some like thier kids to live with them way past what we in western countries think is right. I know that Vietnam is some what like the Phillipines…as far as family members still living at home way past the age that we here belive one should be on their own. So it could be a Asian culture thing also..sure it is..

    • Paul Thompson says

      Dan;
      And a Nice Read back at you!
      I could not agree with you more on your comment, we all have the right to do it our own way. As I said above, I gave to my girls the same options my folks gave to me. That door will never close.

  4. Eric Berberich says

    I think in our culture it is our pride to tell someone I live in my own place. A right of passage,and not to be mistaken with kicking the kids out. You remeber the pride you felt in yourself to have been able to provide your own place and fianlly live under your own roof,just like the pride your daughter feels in herself now. The adventure of being self reliant and living your life as an adult. There is nothing wrong with either decision,there both ok.I heard a report not to long ago that it is more common today to find kids staying or comming back these days it is just the times we live in. So grab a SMG sit back and smile you kids are a lot like you just showing the same pride you did when you left your dads house. You weren’t kick out you walked out like a man, thats amaerican.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Eric;
      I really don’t want to write about my first apartment, some things should remain where they belong, in the past. (lol) One of my family might read LIP. Also you’re so right I’m proud of my boys from my first marriage all grown men living and doing well. Now the two girls are successful in their lives, Damn I do deserve that SMB. I know that my father would look at me from above and think; “He done good!”

    • Paul Thompson says

      Brian;
      Of course it’s still valid, but you are required to go online and work on your MBA. It’s very important to remain current in all fields.

  5. Susan says

    Hi Paul,
    Good article.This is the second time I read an article about children. I like it because, as a parent I am still trying to figure out and understand how some grown up children expect too much from their parents. I received a call for my husband and it was his friend. This friend lost his wife from cancer few months ago.Before his wife passed away, he appointed his 28 year old daughter,( was still living with him and his wife) to have Power of Attorney. The daughter then took out $60,000 from the bank ( she was advised from her aunty, her Mother’s sister ) that she deserves to have the money, it’s hers after all.

    My husband advised his friend to revoke the Power of Attorney. At the end, Daughter, had to put the money back in the bank.No more Power of Attorney for her and trust from her father has diminished. My husband’s friend is not well, he’s on bottled oxygen in the house, he has 2 sons living with him, 1 working with 2 jobs, and the other son ( 24 years old ) sponging off him.We invited him ( my husband’s friend ) to stay with us for as long as he wants, at least where we live he can have fresh mountain air, peace and quiet.

    My husband and I have those kind of grown up children. His son, 48 years old ( from first marriage) has been trying to take control of our assets.( He did not succeed with his venture ). Now, we hardly hear from him, only when he wants something. And his daughter, 34 years old (I think ) lives in London ( from second marriage) doesn’t talk to him either, I think she was pretty pissed off, when my husband sold some units to pay off some debts. She said: how dare you sell my inheritance!

    As for me, I have 1 and only son, 25 years old ( from previous marriage )he is pretty much the same, he thinks that everything should be given to him in a silver platter. (read my comment on JohnM’s article)

    You are right Paul, it is not a parents job to support their grown up children forever.However,we can give them emotional support and tools of life to fend for themselves. They have to learn how to face reality and take up responsibilities.

    My husband and I have a very special relationship, and we only have each other to look after.We have been married for 16 years, no children sponging on us. What my husband and I have is “SKI”. SPENDING KIDS INHERITANCE.

    • Dan says

      That a great idea Susan…spend the kids inheritance and enjoy life, because it 2 short. Yes what you shared in your comments goes on a lot here in USA…Example..My oldest Daughter was talking to me some time back and she told me My ex wife (2nd wife) was hoping her mother who is 93 and not doing to good..would hurry up and die so her and her sisters could devide up the inheritance! I thought…ya..that sounds like my 2nd ex wife for sure..so..hats off to those that understand that they come 1st and do not really owe their kids any thing after they have raised them and give them a home for near 18-20 years and etc…I do not know really how things are in the Phillipines on this subject, but I know here in the USA a lot of the parents kids try to fig out how to get everything even before their parents are in the grave, or one sad thing is they put their parents or parent in nursing home and forget they are there…I think every body should take a tour thru a nursing home just to see how sad it is and learn to be more thankfull for ones health and you come away with a better understanding how fragile we are as humans and if for only a moment try and put our selfs in some of those poor old peoples shoes, because after all some of us will be their some day…..So..glad you are enjoying life and hope its a long one

      • Susan says

        Hi Dan,
        Thank you. We are doing fine and enjoying life and trying not to worry too much about our ungrateful kids. It is pretty disgusting when I hear about kids cashing in with their inheritance or putting their parents in a nursing home. My husband is a good son, when his mother was alive; he looked after his mother very well. She was living in one of his units, paid her bill, pay for her groceries; he used to send her or take her with him overseas for holidays every year. I am very proud of him.

        Few years back, (when my husband was 58), his son made a statement that when his father turns 60; he will put him in a nursing home. Well! I was not amused. I said to my stepson: you go right ahead and try my patience.
        I was so worried, I asked my husband if he can really do that because of them being Jewish. My husband assured me, his son has no say about it only when it comes to funeral arrangement. I have something else in my sleeve to worry about. My husband has long life ahead of him; he is 69 years old (he said, it’s his favourite number, got to love his sense of humour) but he looks 10 years younger. People cannot believe about his age, sometimes he acts like his shoe size, ha ha ha…

        We live up near the ski field, we both love it here away from city life and BS. I think his son can’t believe that his father is well and look healthy (even he has health problems). At least I’m doing a good job on looking after him. I feel very happy when we met up with friends and they make comments how well he looks. It’s the healthy living, fresh mountain air, good out-look in life and most of all, we both have good sense of humour.

          • Susan says

            Hi chasdv,
            Maurice and I bought a will kit from the post office 3 weeks ago , still sitting here, unfilled and unsigned. I am not too worried about it, really.

            • ian says

              Susan- a will is never something that we worry about- until its too late ! Best not to put it off. Just make sure you follow the instructions about the witnesses very precisely

              • Susan says

                Hi ian,
                You are right. I have seen it happened.Perhaps I should do something about it. Thanks mate.

            • Susan says

              Hey, thanks for your advice. Maybe I should worry about it because just the way our kids carries on. I’m too trusting I suppose…..

              • Paul Thompson says

                Susan;
                As with the good advice from above I say; “That a will is the most important thing, we never want to think about.”

    • Paul Thompson says

      Susan;
      There is no way actions like that can be justified. My father’s will was simple, we were called in and asked to chose something that had value to each of us five sons. I asked for an old Navy compass, and some small items that had meaning to me. My brothers did the same. Everything else was sold and divided among us, and not one argument occurred between any brother. He wanted nothing to ever come between his boys. Nothing has yet. I’ve seen what greed has done to other families, it’s not a pretty thing to watch.

      • says

        Hi Paul – Glad your father go his wish. Our two keep encouraging us as some reader have put it, to spend it will we are still able to enjoy it. And at the end of the day if there is nothing left at least they will have memories. Good ones I hope, although we may never know unless that big mansion in the sky really exists.
        Regards.
        Jim.

        • Paul Thompson says

          Hi Jim;
          After my fathers funeral I had to fly to Bahrain to meet a ship. I gave Power of Attorney to my oldest brother and told he, to do what’s best. He did!
          My brothers and I did that to our folks, we’d tell them that anything they left to us, we would just spend the inheritance on frivolous stuff. It was theirs and I for sure didn’t need it. My Father took sick on a trip to Ireland, and passed a year later at 84. So we have the memories of them enjoying their retirement. BTW: It sounds like you’ve got some great kid’s!

      • Susan says

        Hi Paul,
        You are right it’s not a pretty sight when kids squabble about money. But we already told the kids “SKI”. Hmmm…. I think that is the reason why we don’t hear from them on regular basis. Ha ha ha…..

        • Paul Thompson says

          Susan;
          SKI will catch on, you should make bumper stickers and sell them.
          I feel that retirement is a right, you earn by working all your life, fulfilling life’s obligations to your family. Raising the kid’s, providing them with the tools to be a success. Once you’ve done that, “Let the party begin!”

      • Susan says

        Paul,
        Thanks for your advise.We are in Melbourne at the moment,we have the will with us( still blank of course),we are going out tonight for dinner with friends and they will be assigned as executors. Can’t hurry these things, been married for 16 years & no will, no wonder the the kids wants us kark it! ha ha….

        • ian says

          Susan- different jurisdictions have very different requirements re witnessing of wills.
          If you are going to sign the will in Australia I believe you have to make sure it complies with Australian law. [ I havent researched that in over 20 years tho lol]
          The attesting by witnesses in the Phil is much different than that in Canada.
          An improperly done will is usually no better than no will !
          Even my own father had a will done, then got remarried, and didnt change his will. Marriage of course made his will invalid. And of course on his death his new “bride” tried to avoid any of his wishes !!

          • Susan says

            Hi ian,
            Thanks for your advice. You can buy will kit from the post office, and yes it complies with Australian law, it’s all legal ( you can even buy a divorce kit from the post office and all legal also). We are residing in Australia at the moment, so there’s no problem there. Your father’s new bride has a problem in her hand if there is no current will, the same law applies her in Australia.

    • chasdv says

      WOW,if i ever had a daughter bitch to me “how dare you sell my inheritance”,i would make damn sure she got Zero,wala.

    • Randy W says

      Susan

      Good for you. You and your husband who worked hard all your life have earned the right to spend all the money you have. Good luck and have fun spending it.

  6. Sonny says

    I don’t want to sound like a racist but if it’s the other way around, like your mother or father needing some lifetime help. I noticed asians/mexicans/etc are more open to welcoming a family. Let’s face it, other countries don’t have a good retirement benefits like the US before (not sure now since they have a lot of problems).

    People can be independent if they want to, but it’s different out here.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Sonny;
      There’s no monopoly on one group taking better care of their elders, than another. I know my two girls would take care of me if it ever need be. But I made sure in my life that they would never have to. I always wanted to provide for my children, not them provide for me.
      I feel you think the way in Asia is superior to other places, and that is where you error as when you said; “Let’s face it, other countries don’t have a good retirement benefits like the US” I’d ask; “Why not?” But any person who would rely only, on any government to protect their future, is a fool. I’d have no respect for any person who’d wander through life willy-nilly and think, oh well, I’ll let my kids/government take care of me.
      I’ll do it the way my father showed me, and I thank God that he did.
      BTW; Most people who start a sentence, “I don’t want to sound like a racist” often do. But I know that’s not you. Thank you for your comment.

  7. Jack says

    Paul,

    I believe that poverty has something to do with the living arrangements. I find family members pooling their income so that they can have at least 2 meals to eat in one day. Poverty also makes in necessary to live away from home to help support the family. My asawa was working as a house maid in Manila after she graduated from High School and she sent 1/2 of what she earned to her parents. Also, there are many OFW’s like your daughter living abroad with most of them sending money home.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Jack;
      I think you are somewhat right that it has it’s roots in poverty. But I think it’s more so in the culture, as rich and well off families do it also. My daughter Ymir’s friends in Singapore are shocked when they hear she only sends money to her bank account here in the Philippines. And my girl Hanna and her husband Chris live with his family by choice, not because they have to. My son-in-law Chris has to run the 10 hector farm, and the many family businesses after his Father passed away, and the best schools for my Granddaughter are close to their compound in Olongapo.

  8. Bill B says

    Mice read Paul,
    Their is a movie that came out a few years back in America that deals with kids not leaving the house. The movie is “Failure to Launch” It is a good movie and funny. Just something that I wanted to add, as all the comments are right and wrong. The reason I say that to a Filipino it is right, to the American it is wrong, but like you had said Paul, it’s a culture thing. The thing with culture is that to someone who has not experinced another culture they can see that culture as being wrong and not the right way to do things. On the other hand someone the has seen and experinced many cultures will see things with a more open mind.

    As you said Paul “There is on right or wrong.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Hi Bill;
      I did see that movie, and yes, it was funny. “Filipino it is right, to the American it is wrong” Threw me for a minute, so I read it again and agree with you in the context you wrote .
      I had not thought about my brother-in-law having never seen my culture first hand, as I’ve seen his. Very good point and I’ll remember that in the future. Thanks Bill!

  9. Hudson says

    Hey Paul,
    I’m not sure everyone there in the philippines has that school of thought of the children living with the parents until whenever…. My wife and I have plans to move back to the philippines when I retire in about ten years or so. I have been keeping my eyes open for some property in Bukidnon. My wife just informed me that she would rather live in Davao because she doesn’t want to live too close to her mom…Huh? I guess since her daughter is married to a RICH American she has been very demanding, and my wife is getting fed up with it.

    • JohnC says

      RICH American?..Same for a RICH Brit!. 20 years and 2 grown sons later (one of whom if permitted would be a ” me me lazy sponging couch potato”), when I and my peers in a similar position try to explain some of the horrendous taxes and expenses involved in Western Living to my In-Laws plus plus in the PI; I get the assenting understanding “nods” an Oo’s but after all of these years I can see that the ears have really turned off! I don’t think that ATM on the forehead is erase-able. As a westerner I understand the expression Kick out, perhaps the euphemism”encouraged to stand on own two feet” may not have caused a stir” LoL. Personally, for me the bottom line is “We as your devoted Mum & Dad have dedicated our time and financial resources for your education moral values and well-being to provide you with the tools to follow the path of your own choosing and now we’ve earned the right to enjoy our remaining time on this earth and our love for each other while we are still able, after all that’s why we got Married in the first place. Our doors will always be open but don’t be surprised if we are away spending our hard earned rewards enjoying ourselves.. SKI !
      Incidentally, although a close family in Manila, there have been a few upsets because some of the family with good overseas earnings have been pleading poverty while filling their own coffers and leaving it to my Mrs with the RICH Brit to pick up the slack for this & that..

      • Paul Thompson says

        John;
        My brother in law pulled one on me years ago. He was building his new house on his sisters land, and borrowed from me the money he needed to finish it. He told me that as soon as he sold his old house I’d be repaid. The pain from the fish hook is still bothering my cheek. I waited, and waited, then found out his house was sold while building his new one. He got me good!

        • Susan says

          Hi Paul,
          It makes me sick when somebody do a dirty up on people. I would not want for this kind of thing to happen to me or anybody.

          • Paul Thompson says

            Susan;
            Seven years later when his business was failing, he came to me with his sad story, and asked if I could help. My answer was; Wow, that must be rough, carrying that set of Brass Ones in your pants all day?”

    • Paul Thompson says

      Hudson;
      You’re wife has proven that everybody has limits. Why someone would think there is a “Free Ride” sign on our back is something I’ll never understand.

      • Hudson says

        This one is funny…We offered to buy her mother 3 pigs, 2 female, and 1 male to breed and raise. She then asked if I was going to send her money every month to buy pig food. There,s other similar stories, but this is the most recent.

        • chasdv says

          Hudson,
          Common story,and reminds me of a guy who built his filipina’s poor family a modest western style house.Everytime a utility bill came in,he was expected to pay it.
          This really irked him,but he should have taken this into consideration before building it.

          • JohnC says

            Haha, Hey Paul, that’s a Gem, is it your own? I’d like to use it!

            A bit like “Offer a hand and they take the whole Arm!

            • Paul Thompson says

              John;
              That was mine, but I give it freely to the world. And Offer a hand, then check if your jewelry is still there!

              • ian says

                Paul – for me its always been ” he’s a great guy, but after he shakes your hand better check you still have all your fingers ‘ LOL

  10. Mike says

    My wife & I have discussed this topic quite a few times. I appreciate that Filipinos/as are more likely to have their parents live with them as they age, than my own culture. But I do have issues with the “kids” remaining at home, forever. My wife, and her sister & brother who live in France, seized opportunities as they were presented. Meanwhile, back in Davao, 4 brothers-in-law in their 40s & 50s can’t even pay the phone bill between them. They just keep making more kids – now, some of their kids are making more kids – and blowing every opportunity we give them. I’ve already told my wife that when I’ve finished building and start living in the home on Samal Island, if her brothers start coming over for hand-outs, I’m going to sink the ferries! She reminded me that she bought one of them a boat when last there, to which I responded that he’s probably already sold it.

    All joking aside, if the off-spring or in-laws are productive and not a burden, I think that it is nice to have a full house. If they’re sitting around on standby, however, it is not only bad for those who foot the bill but for those who are taking advantage, as well. The worst thing is to see the kids of such people picking up their bad habits.

    • JohnC says

      Mike, there’s a lot to be said for marrying an Orphan!
      Mate of mine built a nice 4 bedroom house in Aklan; the In-Laws plus sister in law plus moved in..When he thought they were taking advantage of his generosity, pay for this pay for that etc, and he was affected by his company cutbacks, he had to say no to certain requests. His Mother in Law threatened to kick him out because the house was built on her land. Apparently only the typhoon and associated flooding prevented him from bulldozing the place. He and his immediate family have re-located to Manila where it would appear they are more contented with far less hassle and demands.

      • Mike says

        John C,
        Yes, it could always be worse! I’m hoping for arm’s-length diplomacy, but am willing to retreat to Dalaguete, if it becomes necessary. Fortunately, the in-laws all refer to my wife as “Ka Jenny” and genuinely fear for their ears, if not their lives, when she is on the warpath! The eldest sister & her french husband are also developing on Samal & elsewhere, so her husband & I should be able to put up a united front when our wives aren’t around to hold the fort!

        • Christine says

          John C, your story reminded me of a Farang in Thailand who built a bautiful house by the beach. Thailand has similar laws when it comes to land ownership. Farangs aren’t allowed to own land there, so he put said house to his wife’s name. A month after they moved into the new house, Thai wife ran off with another man and locked the Farang out of house and home. He hired a dozer and demolished the house himself. Heavy handed? Perhaps. But under the circumstances, he only took what was his. So the Thai wife was left with land with a HUGE rubble.

          Mike, you are lucky to have a sensible wife. :)

          • Paul Thompson says

            Christine;
            A friend of mine did the same thing in Cebu, I wonder if it was the same guy? History does tend to repeat its self! (lol)
            But the best story (albeit so sadly true) was a guy I sailed with who had his girl friend build him a house in Thailand. Every month he sent the money, and every month she sent the pictures of the house going up. He flew to Thailand to see his new house, and could not find the girlfriend. but he found the house, and the British guy who built and owned it, told my friend that he never did understand why once a month this girl in a Tuk-tuk would show up and take pictures of his house being built.

            • ian says

              Paul- thats an absolute classic !! lol gotta love the ingenuity involved ! I’m sure that story is destined to be retold forever wherever absentee lovers/wives exist. hahaha

              • Paul Thompson says

                Ian;
                We as his shipmates, hated to laugh at the story, Oh hell, that’s a lie, we rode him forever, and nicknamed him “The Deed”.

        • Paul Thompson says

          Mike;
          Sink the ferry, classic!
          My cure for in-laws was a natural solution that they provided to me. When I was sailing, and still making good money. I would “LOAN” (give) them money. The next time they’d ask, I point out the money they stilled owed, and how I’d hate to be the one to put them so far in debt. Now that everone owes me money from the past, I’m on easy street. I’ll still help with medical, that’s only right, but I’ll go and pay the bill myself. (I was burned once.)

    • Christine says

      This story sounds really familiar Mike. I phoned family the other day and found out that my sister (who kept making mistakes with her choices of men, and also producing babies like there’s no tomorrow!) has moved in with my mum who’s already on PI pension. Sister’s unemployed of course, towing 5 kids including an unemployed 20 year old one from another relationship. You can guess who will be feeding them – it won’t be me, but my poor mum who by the way is such a sucker she takes in anyone who wants to stay in the house I paid for. That house is packed like sardines, what with brother and his family (wife and 2 kids) also living there. Imagine if I’d built a mansion? I’m sure they won’t have problems filling it!

      • Mike says

        My mother-in-law just moved back to Davao from France, Christine, and is too free with her pension, also. We’re planning on tearing the family home down when we return & building townhouses on that property. Of course, the homes will be used by the many who are living on the property, now, but at least my mother-in-law will have a place for herself. right now, she’s lucky to have her own bedroom.

        • Christine says

          Maybe you should ask mum-in-law if she wants her own room? :)
          My mum has threatened to sell my house and give the funds to my sisters. No consultations if yours truly (who paid for the damn thing) is agreeable to this. So then I told her that if she is serious about moving back to her province that I will pay for her one way fare and set her up in another place there, minus the Manila parasites. Of course she wasn’t serious. But I was. It’s the culture Mike. We can’t live with each other but we can’t live without each other either.

          • Paul Thompson says

            Christine;
            If your Mother sold the house, gave the money to your sister, and you moved your mother far away, within 6 months your sister would be broke, and borrow the money, to follow your mother, and just start the cycle again.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Roberto;
      Have you ever wondered why the Edsel is worth so much today? (lol) I was 9 or 10 when they Edsel came out, and I swear by all that’s holy, my father was thinking about getting one. My Sainted Mother put the Kibosh on that plan. He bought a Rambler instead!
      He was an interesting man.

  11. chris says

    hi paul i am like you i was marriied at 21 and joined the army at 22 and have never lived at home with my parents for any length of time only while on leave and single , we have this problem here where many children dont leave home until they are in there lkate 20″s or even 30″s i just say that they have it to easy no spirit of adventure it is all to easy at home cooked meals washing done for you comfortable bed no responsibility except to make a meger donation to the kitty ,i feel that each generation is becoming softer and softer and if we have to defend our nation again in a big way we are going to be in one hell of a mess , now my parents (mother only now) live in a unit in our back yard safer for them less stressfull for me they make a contribution to the running of the houshold once a fortnight and never see any bills at all as they run of the same gas and phone and electricity lines there is no interferance from either side in each others lives but i know that she is safe and my wife would not have it any other way,my parents looked after me when i was young they listened to me and helped me when i went through 2 marriages i feel it is my duty to look after them until the time comes for them to pass on ,my regiments motto was “duty first ” and this is my duty to those who have looked after me
    chris

    • Paul Thompson says

      Chris;
      And no person could say that you’re not doing what is good and right. There is a duty owed to our parents, and if the situation warrants, it is our Duty to step up and accept it.
      I further agree that this planet will never again see a Generation as great as those who served before us. Duty First, is a good motto for everyone.

  12. rebecca Ferry says

    Hi Paul,
    As much as i like a filipino values when it comes to family, i like the American culture when it comes to teaching their children to become independent so i agreed w/ all you said.When i built my house my sister’s family moved in and acted like they are the owner of the house and then put all the bills on me and everything including their children’s educations, now my nephew screwed up and get her girlfriend pregnated and didn’t finish his education and that’s the last blow that i’m gonna take so i asked them to leave my house right away…..since then me and my sister stopped talking w/ each other ……

    • Paul Thompson says

      Rebecca;
      That is called “The Popeye Factor” Dats alls eyes cans stands, and eyes won’ts stands no mores” Even family must realize that there is a breaking point for all. I wonder is why they keep pushing us to find out where it is? I find no fault in your decision, although your sister will!

  13. says

    Oh my God! You touched on a very very sore subject for me. If the people of the Philippines do NOT become more independent they will NEVER be as successful as they can be. I live in America but have been to the filipines many times and have lived there.

    The issues with kids staying with their parents for a long time HURTS them. It creates a dependency that is NOT healthy for the family or the country. Now do NOT get me wrong, the strong family ties with filipino families are great in some ways…but bad in others.

    I have many filipino friends and contacts in the United States and EVERY single one of them mention the issue with filipinos NOT being independent enough. I realize some of it is financial. I get that. But it needs to change.

    I cannot count the number of filipinos who barely make an effort to do anything because they know they have their families to fall back on. This does NOT help them or the country. In the long run it hurts them. You can have strong family ties, but eventually the children need to get out and make it on their own.

    To me this is one of the HUGE issues that is holding the Philippines back…when you know that you can barely make a peso but you will be ok because your family will help support you that is NOT good for you in the long run. I have seen it create so many stresses on families in the Philippines. I could give you example after example of how this hurts families there.

    I did not kick my daughter out of the house, but when she was 18 she was ready to go on her own. She is now 21, owns her own house, has a very good paying job, and heck….she made need to take care of me! LOL. If my daughter had run into problems she knows she could have come back, but she was EXPECTED to make her way (with some help from mom and dad) not sit at home all day talking about nothing and doing not much more than that.

    I love the filipino strong family ties in many ways, but allowing your kids to stay home and do almost NOTHING (which is mostly what happens) is not good enough.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Todd;
      You wrote absolutely nothing that I would not agree with 100%. Plus you summed it up perfectly.
      Both my girls know how proud I am of the way they live their life. While others sit around waiting for that Mango to fall, they will climb the tree and pick them. As long as there is a breath in my body and a beer in my hand I will remain their Rock. But if I pass on they will always succeed on their own, as they were taught to.

  14. sugar says

    Todd, I second that! He he. Filipinos are too dependent. Children should be taught how to be independent. We often called people, in jest, a PAL – Palamunin (read bum, a mouth to feed) when that someone isn’t really doing anything, and just staying at home, dependent on the folks for food and other necessities. Ha ha.

  15. Christine says

    Todd, I could not have explained your point any better. I have seen these stories over and over amongst my own relatives and relatives of my friends here. You are right, dependency (in the guise of family ties) is a big problem in the Philippines. In my town alone, lots of families are being supported by OFWs. But the one I remember most are the 3 brothers in their a 30s, all unemployed and married and of course the baby factory that comes along with it. They were being supported by their 60++ year old mother in the US who is working as caregiver.

    Rebecca, your story sounds a lot like mine, except in this instance, it’s my brother who took over my house, then he had the gall to ask me to pay for his 2 kids’ education – one was architecture and the other nursing. Both courses very expensive in the Philippines and of course the Philippines have a massive oversupply of these profession. Said brother by the way is an OFW, so he is not exactly destitute. Of course I said no, and like you he does not talk to me anymore. Well, if that is all there is that is holding the family ties (the mighty pesos), I don’t want it.

  16. rebecca Ferry says

    Christine,
    I’m quite frustrated that this dependency is the norm in our country for the sake of family ties and having live and work in other countries for so many yrs, i have learned to appreciate the word independence .What i worried about is the impact of this dependency in our new generations if it won’t change ,our society will probably collapse in no time at all.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Rebecca;
      I had a bite my tongue moment, 10 years ago at a wedding. The 45 Y/O distant relitive of my wife was marrying a 18 Y/O girl. The age difference has nothing to do with this comment, but the fact that in his life he’d never left his fathers house and had a job. Today, 4 kids later he’s 55, his wife works and his parents passed away, and he is now supported by his younger OFW sister.
      My tongue biting moment? During the wedding service, I want to jump up, when the priest ask if anyone has a reason why this couple should not be joined… And shout; “Run little girl, that man has never held a job!” My wife stopped me.

      • rebecca Ferry says

        Omg! Paul, you should stop the wedding if that is the case and let the girl run >>>>>> hahaha!! that’s so scary ……

        • Paul Thompson says

          Rebecca;
          His wife is the nicest people you could meet, I saw her a month ago and could not believe the girl was now 29. She has the look of a woman whom life has beaten down.

  17. chasdv says

    Hi Paul,
    Interesting topic.
    Different strokes for different folks,or should that be cultures lol.

    I have no problem how long kids live at home,as long as they are working and contributing.
    My Dads rules were,pay 25% of your net income into the family pot,to cover your keep,and help with household chores.If you questioned him about that,his reply was simple “Those are the house rules,if you don’t like them,go live somewhere else”.
    He was a hard task master,when i got a paper round at 12yrs old,he stopped my pocket money.When i questioned him,he replied “Your working now,so no longer entitled to pocket money”,boy was i mad at the time.I later realised it was his way of teaching us to become independant.
    regards,Chas.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Chas;
      At the time you thought he was hard on you, and now you’re glad that he was. It’s a Dad’s job to teach and show us what a man really is. Didn’t hurt us a bit!

  18. sugar says

    Hello Paul – In my situation, we were taught to be independent by my mom. I think that growing up without a father by the side, we became all the more independent in many ways. There’s 5 of us, and being second to the youngest, I was dependent on my mom (until her demise). I am glad that she taught me and my siblings on us how to fend for ourselves. I guess Filipinos need to learn how not to be dependent all the time. What if that certain person you always depend on is not around anymore? That would be a struggle. I think. Thank you.

    • Paul Thompson says

      Hi Sugar;
      I always knew that life was a pass or fail proposition, with no do overs, second chances, yes, as many as you need. But without that streak of independence, a person is doomed for the very reason you mentioned above.
      When their rock is gone, they’re floating on their own, I just hope they learned to swim.

  19. Dan says

    Independence, or self reliance is the virtue by which you are self-supporting in the sense that you consume nothing that you haven’t earned. Dependent individuals cannot provide for themselves only take or accept something from others…Independent people are strong, dependent people are weak…Independent people make their own way in life and learn by their mistakes…Dependent people depend on some one else to make their way in life and do not learn by their mistakes. Parents that teach their kids to be indapendent need to be thanked and praised..Parents that teach their kids to be dependent deserve to live with the burden of their teaching…and so it goes……..

    • Paul Thompson says

      Dan;
      My complements to you on your comment, it was excellent.
      I couldn’t help to notice that what you wrote also explains the difference between the United State’s two major political points of view, conservatives and liberals.

        • Paul Thompson says

          Thank You Dan;
          Thanksgiving was good, had my dinner at a friends resturant. There is just no need to cook a turkey for just two people. But I hope you and yours enjoyed the day!

          • says

            Hey Paul – We cooked a turkey yesterday on Mindanao Bob’s BBQ Grill Version 2.0. It was sure good! Yes, you read that right… we have already gotten a new version of the grill since moving! Honestly, I think it was the best turkey I’ve ever eaten!

            • Paul Thompson says

              Bob;
              I had no doubt that a new “Mindanao Bob’s Deluxe BBQ Grill”, would be priority “ONE” after you moved.
              Christmas Eve party 2010 here in Bataan we are cooking a pig on my lowly copy of the “MB’sDBBQG” BBQ. BBQ turkey is always great!

              • Paul Thompson says

                Bob;
                My “MB’sDBBQG” had a good workout during Manny’s fight party on Pay-per-view. Most of the neighborhood was in attendance, It was fun for all!

      • ian says

        Uh Paul- I assume you made the post about the US’s political parties in jest ? I know you are way too wise to have actually meant it ! lol
        After all , just because the Republicans dont seem to learn from their mistakes doesnt mean that they cant also be independant. mmmm then again, maybe you were talking about the Democrats not learning from their mistakes ? Gotta go lie down now- you got me all confused ! lol

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