My counter question is “Do we have any choice ?” And my answer is an emphatic  “No”. When the children have decided to go abroad for pursuing higher studies or in search of greener pastures, their decision will be almost final. There is no point in going against it.

Now let us see why the children want to go abroad. We have to accept the fact that the children of  today are more knowledgeable and smarter than we were during our younger days. The level of  intelligence and general knowledge is definitely better thanks to the personal computers and the internet.

There is no denying the fact that the jobs abroad especially in the USA, Europe and Canada fetch better salaries, offer better working conditions, better recognition of  merit and better quality of  life. One may be able to earn in about fifteen years what we earn during our entire career in our country. So we cannot fault our children if they want to go abroad for higher studies which is nothing but a passport to a foreign job.

We have to accept that the concept of  our children living with us and taking care of us in our old age is fast disappearing. We cannot make our self-interest come in the way of our children’s future. All said and done, we want our children to be happy wherever they are.

On our part, we can try to be a little less selfish and more self-sacrificing and try to attain financial independence through financial prudence. Also we should  do whatever we can to remain reasonably healthy so that we do not become a burden to our children, to the society and finally to ourselves. Institutions like Nightingales Elders’ Enrichment Centres  help us remain healthy and emotionally self-supportive.

Therefore, if our children want to go abroad, let us encourage them by all means. If we discourage them , one of  two things will happen. If they obey us and stay back, they may get frustrated in life and put the blame on us. If they defy us, it will leave us frustrated and angry and our children will be living abroad with a feeling of guilt; there may be a permanent break in relationship. The choice we have is obvious.



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