Parents of teenagers are transporters or taxi drivers of teenagers. It feels like our mission in life has been redirected to having to ensure our teens are driven to and fro.
I got a frantic sms from Arnia on Friday that they are going to be finished with exams at 9 o’clock. She needed to be fetched earlier. The original plans were that they were supposed to write until 11. It gave them an hour or more to learn, but then the teachers decided it would be better for them to write immediately and go home! Nice, teachers! Better for you, but definitely not for the children who could actually have learnt something. It is also definitely not better for the parents who have to leave their jobs and rush to go and fetch. Arnia had to wait for 2 hours at school before Dries could go and fetch her. She assured me that she was one of the last students to be fetched. (But I know she exaggerates sometimes!) How do all the others parents manage? Is it just me who struggles, or do other parents also find it difficult to rush to all the transporter demands?
And don’t forget all the social engagements a teenager has to attend. Going to the movies, parties, meeting with friends and the boyfriend… that’s what the weekends are for. Dries is very understanding with regards the social needs of a teen and he is always willing to transport Arnia. He struggled himself when he was young and were not always given the opportunity to go out. I am very grateful to him, because Arnia’s biological dad always had a problem to go and fetch her, even though he took her to a place, but then complained when he had to fetch her again. She was most of the times too scared to ask him, because he complained that she did not spend enough time with him. (Go figure that she is fed-up with him!)
My dad was also always willing to transport us. We only had to ask him, but never assume or order him to do it. Thanks, Dad! Now we have to be the transporters ourselves, and now we appreciate your and mom’s taxi driver roles even more!