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This is a question Helicopter Parents

Back when young ScaryDuck worked in the Dole office rather than simply queuing in it, he had to deal with a claimant brought in by his mum. She did all the talking. He was 40 years old.

Have you had to deal with over-protective parents? Get your Dad to tell us all about it.

(, Thu 10 Sep 2009, 15:13)
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Unwarranted Helicoptering by other people's parents
I have posted this before, most likely during some OT thread with all the socialists (alright, PJM and myself) railing against the elitism of the private school system in Britain. But now, in an exciting flurry of magic not seen since Derren Brown correctly predicted the lottery numbers by secretly ejaculating his Magic Semen into the drawing machine, I shall spin it into a yarn almost relevant to this week's question.

My own parents were not helicopters. Nor were they Helicopter Parents. I admit, when I was at school I was quite a shy type and found it a little claustrophobic that they wanted to know how well I was performing and whether I had any friends. In hindsight, I realise all they wanted was that I should try my best, and hopefully develop some form of a social life.

In short, they encouraged my sister and I to do our best, to work hard, to speak properly and above all, to be nice people, but wanted us to be happy wherever we were.

The borough in which we grew up, however, had one of those ghastly "11+" systems. If you passed, you were ferried off to the local grammar school. If you'll excuse the immodesty necessary to this story, people were surprised when I didn't pass. My parents, not agreeing with the ethos of the private school system, sent me to the state comp.

This is where certain other parents came into the picture. They spent a lot of time sweating their kids to get into the local grammar school. And if their kids didn't pass that test, they looked to the local private schools.

So for years, every time I bumped into these parents, there also seemed to be an undertone to the standard questions of "how's school?" and "so which subjects are you taking for GCSE/A level?"

The undertone was, of course, "how well are you getting on in your state school? Can I justify the extra expenditure of sending my brat to the private school instead?"

I realised I wasn't the only one who had spotted this when my parents had some of these people over for dinner. I was back home for the summer after my penultimate year at uni and, for whatever reason, couldn't find anyone to go the pub with that night.
"You're welcome to join us for dinner, Crow," spake my father,
"Thanks, Dad, but I don't want to spend an evening being the State School Control Model."

He laughed. He knew exactly what I meant. I spent the evening upstairs browsing interweb pr0nquietly strumming my guitar instead.
(, Fri 11 Sep 2009, 10:08, 5 replies)
"couldn't find anyone to go the pub with that night"
WHERE THE HELL WAS I? I'm sorry for not being there for you, sweetie.
(, Fri 11 Sep 2009, 10:45, closed)
You were probably on a hot date with a real woman
Or you might have gone back to your old scout group to sexually interfere with the the Brownies. Details of the evening's proceedings are sketchy at best.

How are you these days, anyway?
(, Fri 11 Sep 2009, 10:48, closed)
How are those two things mutually exclusive?
I love taking brownies on dates. The mixture of fruit with chocolate is a winning combination.
(, Mon 14 Sep 2009, 12:39, closed)
Parents sweating their kids for the 11+ makes no sense.
It's a good old-fashionned IQ test. There is no way to prepare for it.
(, Sun 13 Sep 2009, 20:07, closed)
"Au contraire"...
...said the woman down the road from my parents' house who offered classes in how-to-pass-11+-exam.

I don't what she taught 'em, but she's certainly made a killing off innumerable pushy paranoiac parents over the years.
(, Mon 14 Sep 2009, 15:19, closed)

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