[LETTERS to the editor]Prepare to let go and live

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[LETTERS to the editor]Prepare to let go and live

I strongly agree with “Paying for parents” [ Editorial, Nov. 28], which expresses concern about the results of a recent survey of children’s views in regard to supporting their parents.

Why can’t parents, who take on all financial responsibility for their children for such long periods, expect their children’s support after retirement? It is caused by their protective upbringing. Many Korean parents devote themselves to giving unconditional support to their children financially and emotionally. They want to support them as long as they can. So, it makes their children think of parents as helpers they can depend on any time, not as people who should be looked after in turn.

Parents should therefore reconsider their methods of bringing up children. They need to throw out the thought that endless support is the best way to bring up children, and try to separate their own lives from their children’s lives. They should encourage their children to become financially independent after graduation. They should start to provide for their own future as soon as possible.

If children think they are not solely responsible for their parents and want to share the responsibility with society, we can’t blame them. Nobody can go against the tide of the times.

Parents should look ahead to the future and prepare for it. They might have to support themselves for over 20 years after retirement. It’s not a short time. It goes without saying that well-managed national pension and health insurance programs are indispensable conditions, but they are minimum standards to live on.

Parents must start to prepare for their retirement - the sooner, the better.

Kim Ki-ok, teacher
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