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To be bitter about my parent's careers?

(259 Posts)
Kplpandd Mon 12-Aug-19 16:41:16

My parents were very career focused when I was a child.

They would drop me off on the school playground at 7.30am (even if it was dark in the winter) and pick me up at 5pm.

School holidays from the age of about 8 I spent long days alone at home locked in the house with nobody (spolit only child).

I dont know why but I'm starting to really resent the fact that they felt their careers were more important than my safety. I'm also bitter at the fact that nobody such as teachers or my neighbours ever questioned them about dumping me in the playground or leaving me home alone.

I remember going to my friends house after school once and her mum was home already to welcome her and I was so jealous!
This seemed to hit me when my dd reached 8 because I cant even think about leaving her at home for 12 hours whilst I went to work. Is it even legal?

My parents were well off, I never went without material possessions and as an adult I became very close friends with them both (they have now passed). I mean even if they'd sent me to a childminder I'd at least have had adequate supervision? I guess I'm just having a spoilt rant but would really appreciate others views.

TeenTimesTwo Mon 12-Aug-19 16:44:30

What decade were you at Primary school?
I think standards are different now from say 40 years ago.

That said, it sounds a bit rubbish.

Kplpandd Mon 12-Aug-19 16:45:42

I was at primary school in the 1980s till early 90s

Singlenotsingle Mon 12-Aug-19 16:48:56

My DM walked me to the bus stop on my first day at school, aged 5. After that I had to walk to the bus stop on my own, and then get on the bus to school alone. And the reverse in the afternoon, going home. Things were very different in those days, but no point getting upset about it now, especially if the dp's have both now died.

Kplpandd Mon 12-Aug-19 16:51:25

@singlenotsingle oh wow, did that bother you at the time?

ElizaDee Mon 12-Aug-19 16:55:04

oh wow, did that bother you at the time?

probably not because kids weren't snowflakes then.

alligatorsmile Mon 12-Aug-19 16:55:20

I'm sure that for every person who feels their parent(s) were too career-focused, there'll be somebody who thinks their parent(s) were good role models who showed you that women can have careers too.

Morgan12 Mon 12-Aug-19 16:58:36

Being upset about getting the bus alone at aged 5 is hardly being a snowflake ffs!

Also OP I think your parents were out of order doing this yes. That's a long time to be alone. Anything could have happened to you. And dropping you off an hour and half before school started was just cruel imo. They should have had adequate childcare in place.

Waffles80 Mon 12-Aug-19 16:58:43

Five is too young to be walking to a bus and travelling solo; eight is too young to be locked in the house alone.

I’m sorry for your experiences. It sounds neglectful at best and I don’t blame you at all for feeling resentful.

@ElizaDee you sound utterly unhinged if you think it’a acceptable to neglect children like this. I hope you don’t have any.

BarrenFieldofFucks Mon 12-Aug-19 16:58:53

We are hardly talking centuries ago, sounds like we are the same age OP and things were not that different. It certainly didn't happen in any families I knew.

BarrenFieldofFucks Mon 12-Aug-19 16:59:32

Snowflake for thinking a 5 yr old shouldn't be bussing it to school and back alone 😂🤦

sheshootssheimplores Mon 12-Aug-19 17:00:05

I was given a key at six and was expected to let myself into the house until my older sister came home who was meant to care for me. She resented me wildly, bullied me and made my life hell. I used to try and bribe other kids with my lunch in the hope they’d let me come home with them after school. Very often I’d throw the key in front of me on the way home then make a game of trying to find it. I’d often lose it 🤦🏻‍♀️ The whole thing was ridiculous. I have a six year old now and am a SAHM and cannot imagine for a second him being responsible enough to walk a mile home after school and let himself in.

The eighties were a fucking ridiculous time.

Kplpandd Mon 12-Aug-19 17:01:09

Oh the unimaginative 'snowflake' label that gets thrown about a lot these days. 🤨

GlitchStitch Mon 12-Aug-19 17:01:23

Christ it makes me feel old to hear about the 80s and 90s talked about as 'in those days'. FWIW OP I was at primary school in the 80s and this didn't happen to anyone I knew. We even had childminders back in those dark ages! I would be unhappy too, it was neglectful.

Herocomplex Mon 12-Aug-19 17:03:35

No point getting upset about it? I think you’re perfectly entitled to get as upset as you like about it! You were emotionally neglected by the sound of it, and if I were you I would explore it. Children tend to accept the status quo, and normalise difficult things. Phillipa Perry’s Book ‘The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read’ might interest you.

Wishihad Mon 12-Aug-19 17:04:56

I wouldnt resent their careers.

I would resent them. My mum was a sahm then worked but she was massively controlling in all aspects of our lives. It wasnr anything to with her being a sahp or working part time.

When she was working she woildnt have left me at home all day alone (I went to school from 1986) . That was a choice they made not because their careers were important but because they thought that was acceptable.

I also work and wouldnt leave 8 year ds at home all day alone.

Grasspigeons Mon 12-Aug-19 17:05:10

I was a latch key kid. I remember both being proud i could come in and get dinner prepped and not stifled by my mum but also fairly lonely and jealous of my friends who arrived home to a hug and a cuppa.
So i manage to see you cant win whatever. I am glad these days proper childcare exists.

Henlie Mon 12-Aug-19 17:06:25

IMO - 8 is far too young to be left on your own YANBU 😕

I finished primary school in the mid 80s and remember that the school gates didn’t actually open until 8.30. I’m surprised you could go on the premises at 7.30. I’m guessing this was in the days before breakfast clubs?

AustrianSnow Mon 12-Aug-19 17:06:59

No it wasn’t normal in the late 80s and early 90s!

Staying home alone was probably seen as less of an issue than being dumped in a playground at 7.30. You’ve every right to be cross. If you’re an only child then there was probably a spare room for an au pair and they were definitely a thing then.

I think having children the same age can really bring these feelings to the surface. It might be worth speaking to a therapist about them.

tasmaniandevilchaser Mon 12-Aug-19 17:07:10

I was at primary school in the 70s and I’ve never heard of anyone being left alone all day in the holidays or being left in the playground at 7.30am. It certainly wasn’t normal. My mum regales us with stories of going to school in a new area at 5 and walking on her own but this was the 1940s!

titchy Mon 12-Aug-19 17:08:41

It wasn't their careers that were at fault, or the fact that they had careers. Most parents work. It was that they didn't bother putting you in childcare and were probably very neglectful.

But don't blame it on them having careers.

MsTSwift Mon 12-Aug-19 17:11:10

Neglect. With hindsight mine got it just right. Mum was sahm until my younger sister at school then went part time then full time. Lots of happy memories of our pre school years with her.

TheInebriati Mon 12-Aug-19 17:12:39

Being left in the playground at 7;30am or locked in sounds as grim as fuck. And thats coming from a latchkey kid.
At least I had a key.

ArgumentativeAardvaark Mon 12-Aug-19 17:13:42

That was definitely not OK, sorry you went through that. I was at school in the 80s/90s and most of my friends had stay at home Mums or ones with jobs that finished before school pickup. The one who didn’t used to be childminded by my next door neighbour until she was at least 14.
I think that your perspective is a bit skewed if you really think you were a “spoilt only child”- you were neglected, not spoilt! Sounds like this is a label your parents may have given you..?

StCharlotte Mon 12-Aug-19 17:14:23

I can understand why you feel resentment but you can't change the past and what do you want your parents to do about it now? Besides their answer will almost certainly be "we were doing it all for you".

You've come this far, don't give it headspace or let it affect your life any more. All you can do is learn from their "mistakes".

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