Raising a Child in Turkey, isn’t really much different to raising a child anywhere else in the world, but is Turkey the right place to raise my Son?
As a parent you want the best for your Child and sometimes it is hard to know if what your doing is right, or what is best for your child. But we can only do our best and hope that it all works out.
When I set out to live in Turkey with my Husband children where a distant thought, we knew we would have a child but we hadn’t really prepared for the “When”, then nearly at the end of the first year of my life in Turkey I became pregnant.
I really didn’t know what to expect and I was of course nervous about giving birth and becoming a Mum but it all worked out and we have a lovely little boy who is happy and content.
Listening recently to a few conversations and thinking about our life here, it made me think if we are doing the right thing by raise our son here in Turkey. Maybe we should be looking at the UK where the supposed education system is better, there is more freedom, less religious politics and so on.
I am certainly not one to base life on what the papers and media dole out because they are apt at sensationalising and homing in on issues and making out its the whole world involved in stead of one small area in life. But in recent months and years I have watched read and been told about how life is changing in the UK and I am not sure it is all for the best.
To me it seems kids are being brought up thinking they are owed everything, education, jobs, money and when your not in a job, money and housing should just be given to them. And when its not the Government and everyone else in the world is to blame not themselves!
While here in Turkey education is still seen as a privilege and working hard to earn good marks and get to University is something to be proud of and kids aren’t bulled for being bright. Getting to University doesn’t mean you are guaranteed anything but it gives you a better fighting chance of a good job. If you don’t work you don’t get money very simple and the same goes for housing and healthcare. It may seem hard, but it means kids are brought up with a good sense of worth and working ethic and they don’t blame all their problems on someone else.
Kids in the UK expect to have the latest phone, the flashy clothes, computer games and laptops, even when their Parents can’t afford them. They start drinking and hanging out in the streets at an early age and think its ok to be abusive to whoever they like and think they should be given respect.
With the low wage bracket in Turkey, it means most families can’t afford to buy their kids mobiles or laptops or computer games. They don’t act beyond their age and you will still see kids here out playing in the parks not hanging out drinking, playing in the streets with their friends and being kids and not expect their families to pay out for fancy electronics and the latest trainers.
They are also brought up to respect their family, friends and elders. The culture and religion (though I know this will be argued) make up for a community and expectation that elders should be respected and that family is important and comes first above all. Going for picnic or having a family gather is normal.
I also feel here kids diets are better, all kids love sweets and crisp and of course a MacDonalds or Burger King, but in Turkey home cooked meals are normal, a salad is part of nearly every meal, yoghurt is part of life and fruit and veg are sometimes all you get with meat being so expensive.
But overall it makes for a good healthy diet for most kids here in Turkey and I am yet to see any kids in our family and friends circle turn their nose up a veggies or fruit. There are very few ready meals and probably the worst thing kids have here is tea with too much sugar!
When I think it through, I would rather raise my child in a place where he can still play in the park and be a child for as long as is possible, not to grow up thinking electronics and clothes are throw away items and he understands the value of these items. I want him to appreciate his education and not take it for granted and that life is not handed on a plate and when it goes wrong its not the rest of the worlds fault. I want him to live in a world where if you want something you have to work to make it happen. I want him to grow up with respect for people and family and I want him to be healthy and happy.
Turkey is certainly not perfect and there are many faults and probably many changes on the way but at the moment and in the whole Turkey is a much more suitable place for me to bring up my Son and allow us to bring him up with good values and ethics. I can only hope we have made the right choice.
I would love to hear your thoughts on raising your child in Turkey and if you think it is better than your home country or not!
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