Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Survey Shaam Shantir Bhavatu

So I took one of those surveys and found I was a helicopter.

I have to say I was disappointed.

I so wanted to a be a Mercedes Benz. Cruising at 150 kms per hour, without hitting any bumps or craters on the road. Giving every body a joy ride through life. Playing some soul stirring music. Looking at the map just once in a while to figure out where exactly I want to go. But no such luck. I am a chopper. That means I possibly make a lot of noise that bother my near and dear ones. They perhaps have to duck every time they see me land. My presence probably just blows them away. They surely hate me. And who can blame them?

The survey seemed pretty harmless when I took it. I did not know it would pack such a devastating punch.The very first question was if I wanted to put my children in day care. I said no thank you. I am a stay at home mom.

Then it asked if I checked my daughter's cell phone messages. Considering my daughter does not have a cell phone and all her messages come to my mobile, I said yes.

This one was innocuous. Do you accompany your children every where? Indeed I do. The city roads are not safe for young children. I mean, would you not accompany your 14 year old daughter to her tuition class at 7 pm? The class is not near. And it goes on till night 9, so I bring her back home too. Do you mind?

The next one was straight forward. Do you let your kids go online without you supervising? No, never. And to be doubly sure, I have kept the computer in my bedroom. So they are in my room whenever they use it. I will be that way till they are legally old to watch porn. Which in my opinion will be never.

I think the next one was what buried me. It asked if I helped my kids in school work. Of course I said yes. I am an educated person, fully equipped to handle any queries (except any pertaining to physics). Why shouldn't I help them? And if I don't, do you think my mother in law will ever forgive me? Her precious son was a gold medallist through out his life.My daughters are dumb according to her. ( All due to poor mommy's defective genes) If I do not help them to perform well, they will have to hear how daddy won medals and cups at school and how pathetic it is not to do well in academics. I never want my kids to hear that. So there.

And the last one was absolutely useless. Do you always keep track of your kids' friends, their activities and their class schedules? Yes, yes, yes. I know their friends, where they live,what they do, what books they are reading currently, their phone numbers and their parents' cell numbers. Any problem?

So now you all know the result. I am a helicopter mom. I constantly hover over my kids and bug the hell out of them. Apparently, I do not let them make their own choices and constantly suffocate them with my over-protectiveness. I am so devastated to know this. My mother in law on the contrary is sure to be a Porsche. She sent her only son to a hostel at sixteen and has never stayed with him till her husband passed away, which was just three years back.

So to make sure peace prevails in my household and my children learn to be independent and confident individuals, I have decided to turn into a new transport. So no interference from my side, no reminders of any class activity, no dropping and fetching to wherever. To help me go through this difficult time, I have taken to fervently praying every day. May good befall all. May there be peace for all. May all attain perfection. May all be healthy. May all experience what is good and let no one suffer. Aum Shantih Shantih Shantih.

It is going to be so damn difficult.


Anonymous said...

I totally empathize with you dear. Not to worry!You will be fine. And please keep a dairy as to how you exactly accomplish it, cause I will be needing tips soon. I am an accomplished chopper mom too. :( Except for the fact that my son has a PC in his room. I am thinking of trusting him on that one for the time being. He is just 12 for crying out loud.(I take constant walks to his room and back which is totally good for my health too). ;)

ZB said...

donno what dad i would make. Porsche,Lamborghini, Maserati, or jaguar. but i would mind my business rather than poke my dirty nose into hers. i know its easier said than done, we tend to become over protective of people we love, but i would certainly try.

but i feel my wife would be a helicopter like you. :)

Neha said...

be positive aparna...why u thinking that you are constantly hovering...in fact socho ke your children will reach heights which people only dream of cos of this mamma helicopter...you will take them there...so cheer up :)))

R. Ramesh said...

ya..Aum Shantih Shantih Shantih..

Thousif Raza said...

helicopter :D

was fun to read, i guess i will be Lamborghini for sure :P

thank you so very much for dropping by my blog, hope to see you more of you there....

take care and keep writing...........

Sakshi said...

ta da...CHOPPER MOM!! I think I am all gearing up to be a chopper mom like you. I keep a hawk's eye on the boy and like you I think my son will get to watch porn only at his friends place unless he hacks the password of the laptop while I am shoe shopping *mentally makes a note to take the laptop along for shopping when the son reaches a porn craving age*

Lolz you wanted to be a Mercedes Benz? I think I would be happy to be a Beetle and squeeze in between cars in parking lots (read husband and son)

defective genes and urs?? In that case am glad Ishita acquired those genes :)

Meghana Naidu said...

You've got to be kidding. leaving a 14 year old girl unsupervised is like.. is like.. i cant find similes!

NO. i remember what I was like at 14. you really don't want to be doing that O_O

completely SNORT worthy!
copter indeed... next thing you know you'll need headsets to talk the ones in you house
Good luck!

sujata sengupta said...

Are you serious about this survey?? I think I am a truck mom..the military kinds...but at times I am too lazy to interfere and then there are days when the kids are a lot unsupervised, I know you shout at me for that..so was thinking maybe I am a maseratti in the making hmmm?

Sharmila said...

Hahaha! I suggest you chant that Ganesh shloka in English your houseguests' kiddos chanted. The laughter as interlude while chanting 'oh pot bellied ... i bow to thee' would do you real good. ;-)

The Panorama said...

Ha ha ha ! Relax, you are a lovely mom( from one helicopter to another). But really, our children are growing up in a scary world with pedohiles lurking around not just round the corner but also on the internett. The test was probably written by someone who never had kids.

Loved reading this post esp the part about them being old enough to watch porn. I laughed so loud my son wanted to know why I was laughing!!

Swatantra said...

That great!! See helicopter can still move fast and more than benz...

Lala said...

oh. helicoptor mom, beware for your children are getting old enough. but then, i am 23 and my mom still bugs me about a few things. her mom bugs her about everything.

Happy Durga Pujo.

SG said...

Nice post. Our job as parents is to love our kids and raise them properly. Not winning the popularity contest.

P said...

I think the test is meant for mothers with grown up children.

I don't think any mother would consider what you are doing interference... this is the only way you can ensure our children are safe and are not under bad influences!

On the contrary if you are not a "chopper" you are not doing your job! Even from my experience, I was bugged with my mum for doing all that... but now that i am grown up.. we are great friends.. as her answers will be opp. of urs now... not 15 years ago! :P

NR said...

I think most moms will fall in this category...too protective which they are. Too much of survey is also bad dont u think so!!

take care!!

Blunt Edges said...

"...till they are legally old to watch porn. Which in my opinion will be never."
lol...u sure r pucca mommy material!!! :D

the title kinda baffled me...but at the end it all made sense ;)

funny post :D:D:D

Apanatva said...

I completely agree with SG here.

G S Pillai said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
G S Pillai said...

I found your post highly interesting, Aparna, although I don't know which side I have to take, if I have to. The way you have filled in your questionnaire, if seen by a cynical psychology person from a purely objective place might justify calling you a helicopter and worse (how about 'Bulldozer'?), yet your relationship with your daughter seems to be rather positive and not much too possessive. The acid test, I think, would be if and when you happen to resent something your child wishes to do, something she, as an outgoing teen-ager (and soon to be adult) feels entitled to, like in choice of friends or if she wishes to have a cell phone and you dont like it. A mere 'Its not good for you because I say so' may not always be enough. Its how we negotiate the labyrinth of living together, that might make the difference from being looked back upon as a tyrannical, unappreciative mother and a mom, 'who was always there when we needed her'. Also, if I might say so, there are worse things to have happened in your earlier years than to have stolen a pen from a shop or watched porn. It might be infinitely better to have grown up as someone who has found their right and wrong for themselves, through observation (I am sure they have an excellent example to emulate in you), analysis (discussing with friends, as well as reflecting in light of their own experiences), and, much as we might wish was not the case, through experimentation.

Kavita Saharia said...

Helicopter surveillance is meant for VIPs...and our kids are VIPs for us..only the best for them.

Mustaf said...

Why do you want to change the way you took care of your kids till now? I completely agree with your answers for the questionnaire..with your guidance also they can be independent. Just think of how many factors were there to divert the children in your MIL's time and how many factors are there today? and add safety at the top of the list. May be lot of people will raise their eye brow after seeing your answers but I feel you were perfect, at least Me/My wife would also do the same...

Aparna said...

Jyothi, I am not keeping a diary, but every day I take a small step towards non-interference. More than anything, I want my children to be responsible adults. I realise they can have that only if they have their independence.

ZB, just wait and watch, you will be worse than a helicopter. When it comes to daughters, fathers are worse than mothers. BTW, what happened to the story? Any body else writing?

Neha, thanks buddy, you think the kids will enjoy the helicopter ride?

Ramesh, do you even read my posts?

Thousif Raza, thanks for dropping by. Hope you become a Lamborghini.

Sakshi, I do not see Dracut any more. Are you really on an African safari? We moms will always be helicopters. And make sure your son stays away from porn craving friends also.

Meghana, headsets? Haha, thats really cool. May be I should do that. Or have walkie-talkies. Much better than yelling at the top of my voice'clean up your room or else' The kids will love it.

Sujata, you are a jet. You leave them down on land and take a joyride up the sky. That day I caught Toshali online and she said you had gone out for shopping with your hubby. Hmph, bad parenting. I am going to call up your MIL and complain.

Panorama, A BIG hi from one chopper to another. What to do, we are like this only.

Sharmila, the Ganesh shloka will also come, let me first memorise the 'sarveshaam swastir bhavatu' first.

Swatantra, you think being a helicopter is better than a benz? I think so too. But will our kids appreciate that fact?

Lala, long time no see. Moms are like that only. We love being helicopters. Happy Puja to you too.

SG, it is not about being popular, it is about doing the right thing. I will happily do something unpopular if I feel I am doing something good for my children. The trick is to have a balance in life, and I have to start learning the balancing tricks from now on.

P, so glad to know about your mom. I am feeling a lot more relaxed since reading about your comment.

Nazish, thats what moms are for, to worry excessively about their children. Thanks, you take care too.

Blunt edges, you find my predicament funny? I tell you there are no friends in bloggywood. What happened to your sympathies?

Apnatva, thanks. I value your opinion as a mother.

Blue bird, thanks for a professional input. I do not think I am possessive, I may be protective. So I think I will give her all the freedom as an adult. But right now, I think she is too young and needs my protection at times. She is at an age when every thing is good and as a result she just tends to blindly trust some one.The moment she is a bit more mature regarding her judgement, I will withdraw. You dont have to take sides, just give me your honest opinion every time you read my posts.

Kavita, yes our kids are VIPs for us, helicopter surveillance is needed once in a while. As soon as they are old enough, I will withdraw the security cover.

Mustaf, you think I am doing well as a mother? Thank you. However over protection is also bad and the kids need to learn to be independent from an early age these days.

Balvinder Balli said...

Aparna, that was an interesting post. Chopper Mom. comparing a caring mom to a hovering helicopter is very funny indeed. now a day they carry out surveys at the drop of a hat. Aparna, you have rightly included the word 'Survey' in your post title.

ani_aset said...

i think helicopter mom is not a good thing isnt it :P. my mom used a different methodology though, she had built in enough trust and gave enough freedom that i anyways ended up sharing all. i love her for this :)
with time it can get difficult to monitor everything me thinks. god bless
P.S:what special for durga puja? ;)

Nona said...

And did it work?

Helicopter is the most unobtrusive way of noticing things. Isn't that why cops use helicopters?

Insignia said...

Hmm, the post was funny to me. Some random questions in a survey and you are a CHOPPER mom! Hahahaha.

Its ok, as long as you take care of your kids. Knowing your daughter's friend circle and dropping her to tuition classes and picking her up is absolutely a MOMMY thing

Arun Meethale Chirakkal said...

First I was clueless what it’s all about. Then gradually…I like the way you unfurled it.
You hate Physics, don’t you? My idea of an ideal education is Physics at Graduate level and a Masters in Philosophy. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t know a thing about any of these subjects.

A Helicopter Mum, I think a majority of mums would fall into this category.

“Why shouldn't I help them? And if I don't, do you think my mother in law will ever forgive me? Her precious son was a gold medallist through out his life.My daughters are dumb according to her. ( All due to poor mommy's defective genes) If I do not help them to perform well, they will have to hear how daddy won medals and cups at school and how pathetic it is not to do well in academics. I never want my kids to hear that. So there.”

I feel sorry for those kids thinking how expectations, an achiever dad and ego clashes between Maa and Daadimaa might be playing spoilsport with their life.

Sandhya said...

Helicopter mom! Nice title! But a good one! We have to be choppers till they enter college and then slowly let them off, not completely. Once they get their job, our security is not needed, then we will become a speed breaker for them. It is not easy to do, but we have to do, Aparna.

All the best or shall I say 'Ohm shantih ohm'!

BK Chowla, said...

It seems you chose the title first,did you ??
Chopper Mom,that was great.

Unknown said...

Thank god you weren't labelled Maruti 800 MOM. Helicopter is much better in comparison.

LOL... according to these quizzes (i quote Guru FBananda Maharaj), I should die before I file a divorce and then get married to the man of my dreams (who, incidently, happens to be Mr. Darcy, of Pride n Prejudice fame)

abdul hai said...

Be optimistic don't be cynical

Apanatva said...

acchaa soncho bahut acchaa hoga .

Apanatva said...

acchaa soncho bahut acchaa hoga .

Unknown said...

ha ha ha - that was fun to read, Aparna.

sangeeta said...

nice but bumpy chopper ride....it seems your MIL knew only physics....does she read your blog??

i am thinking what kind of mom i am...

and Aparna ..you can see many more indian n some american style pancakes at my banaras ka khana blog , my husband is a pancake junkie n can you believe i make pancakes almost 4 times a week n i never eat them except the jaggery one.

Rajesh said...

Wow!! that was a strange survey and what a outcome.

But as parents we always monitor them, just to make sure that they are in the right track. We love our kids, we want them safe.


I am glad I got to know your blog through KAVITA, visiting your postage and blog is approaching again of INDIA, the country I love, the places, the people, the coustoms, etc....I am sure I was an indian born in another life......I would like to invite you and see some images of India in my own blog, I would love to hear your comments,

Kavi said...

Helicopter ! Thats something !

sm said...


Urmi said...

Lovely and interesting post. Be optimistic and go ahead. Thats the spirit.

Aryan-Arjun said...

it is going to be damn difficult...that I very well agree...be helicopter for another 4-5 yrs..I guess it is good

partha sen said...

Don't worry ! Helicopters moms are the best ones.

P. Venugopal said...

Beautifully written. Excellent craft. I like the subtle way you draw characters, subtle brushstrokes...
Even without the last paragraph, the story is complete. Your writing will sparkle more when you find it satisfying to stop one step short of the punchline...
And, don't try to change. 'Trying' will not bring Shanti, because trying is resistance, isn't it? :)

Mahesh Sindbandge said...

Wow....interesting questions.

I dont think i can take that test in near future or today as i am single yet ( wink wink).

So u r a helicopter huh?

fly fly fly :P

Gymnast said...

My mom is a jet , thankfully. And i guess i turned out fine. 14 yr olds dont really need chopper moms...do they

Aparna said...

Sorry for replying so late people, was busy being a helicopter mom.

Balvinder Singh, thanks.

Ani-aset, I think I need to meet your mother for some tips. Urgently.

Nona, from a helicopter mommy to a cop mommy? I dont think my daughter is going to appreciate this.

Insignia, thanks. Some kids would probably accuse me of intrusion though.

Arun Meethale Chirakkal, I think I am done with being a chopper mom.

Sandhya, I have a feeling I will do well after the kids grow up a bit. I am a bit cautious about the teenage years. Once that is through, I will be fine.

BK Chowla, Actually the title came later. I was looking for a catchy title using the word survey.

Purnima, please let all of us know when you meet Mr Darcy. FBanandji Maharaj told me a lot of things too, most of it is not printable.

Abdul Hai,thank you.

Apnatva, thank you, I really appreciate it.

Spike, thanks.

Sangeeta, my MIL doesn't read my blog, but his son does! Thanks . I will definitely drop in.

Rajesh, spot on. We love our kids and we want them safe.

Helena Afonso, welcome to my blog. Will definitely drop in.

Kavi, wasn't that hilarious?

Sm, thanks.

Babli, thanks, will keep that in mind.

Aryan, I know it will be difficult, I am gearing myself for it.

Partha Sen, thanks for the compliment.

P.Venugopal, thanks, will keep your advice in mind.

Mahesh Sindbangde, I will I will I will.

Gymnast, I guess you will know when you are a mother of a 14 year old. Good your mom was a jet. It must not have been easy. But nothing in this life is easy, right? That is why one needs a sense of humour to go through life.

Anonymous said...

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Gayathri said...

That was hilarious..i tell you,when i become a mom one day,i will be worse than a helicopter mom..i dun think there's anything wrong with it at all..

Onkar said...

This post made great reading and demolished many of the hackneyed arguments advanced in favour of abdicating one's responsibility towards one's children.

Prashansa said...

I think I will be Helicopter mom as well! I do not even want to take the survey!And I think I am happy with this result for now!
Thank you for visiting my blog! I loked the way you write your blog!

The Unsure Ascetic said...

Hehehe, chopper mom! I seriously think you were on the right track with parenting. Your kids are young and independenc should be gradual. These quizzes are designed by americans whose socity is much safer than ours.

Sucharita Sarkar said...

Oh my, i am sure to be a helicopter-mom as well. What to do, should i give them their parachutes and life-jackets and tell them to jump to freedom and self-reliance?

Sucharita Sarkar said...

Oh and BTW, all year-round sales have completed taken away the charm of Puja shopping. What about you?

PNA said...

U should be happy... helicopters fly in the sky with no road blocks or traffic police to control among the clouds and a bird's eye view... advantage over any car/bus/truck/lorry/auto on the road)...

om! shanti shanti shanti

:) PNA...

spiderman! said...


Not sure whether after 54 comments you would even notice this. But could not help but comment on some of the aspects.

1. At 14, I guess it is fine to pick-drop your daughter from wherever. But I do hope, in some time, she gets time to meet her boyfriends by bunking those tuitions. I don't know you, but I suspect that you are a Bengali ? Bengali parents, for my comfort, are hopelessly over-protective.

2. Your daughter like a typical bengali girl will never watch porn. But if its a son, be assured, he will and he should. ALL MEN, including our fathers and their fathers (trust me on this or if possible ask yours!) have done it over centuries and it should not be any different for him. That is an integral part of a boy's life and a very interesting one as well.

Good luck on your decision. May all turn out well :)

Btw, I did not intend to judge you on your maternal skills, so if the comment appeared to be like that, my apologies.

Shaunak Mukherjee said...

Helicopter! lolz
I'd probably be a hummer.Protective, comfortable and eats a LOT! :P

First visit! :)

J P Joshi said...

Reading the post, I can only say that your last line of "It is going to be so damn difficult", says it all. The only way to change from a chopper to a Mercedes is to just let go of the rotor blades, "I am the doer". Difficult, but not impossible. Enjoyed the post.

ekta khetan said...

Hey aparna you have got an amazing blog and you always comes out with an "out of box" thinking. I have read your attempt on Zillionbig' stry at his blog and was impressed.

I too have tried to write my own interpretation and even tagged your story there. here is the link- http://ektakhetan.blogspot.com/2009/09/wake-up-arun.html

Let me know if you like it ore not. Cheers:)

The Holy Lama said...

So, they brought out an AUTOMOM magazine also. They didn't tell me. Anyways, I think might be a ... What was that again? Iam the absent minded mom, the kind that forgets kids exams, takes the kid for fancy dress on the wrong day. Maybe it helps, they survive anything nowadays. Keep cool, your kids are gong to be fine.

Aparna said...

@ Gautam,you are welcome.

@ Gayathri, thank you so much. I think you will be a fantastic mom.Specially with all the practice you have had on your kid brother.

@ Onkar, thank you. The survey was actually quite entertaining.

@ Pra, helicopter moms rule! Thank you and you are welcome. You have a pretty neat blog too.

@ Abstract Scientist, I do not know whether american societies are safer, but moms here are definitely more protective. Thanks.

@ Sucharita, hmm, the parachute idea is worth pondering over. I bought some stuff for the kids for puja, but yes you are right. the charm of shopping is somewhat gone.

@ PNA, may be you are right. So I am utterly confused. Should I or should I not be a helicopter? Decision making is so tough.

@ Spiderman, I notice each and every comment, whether 4 or 54. I also reply to each one of them, though sometimes I am late. Bengali girls do not watch porn? Who told you?

@ Shaunak, first things first, I love your name. If I had a son, would have named him Shaunak. I completely understand the Hummer part, with your own kids, you have no option but to feel protective.

@ JP Joshi, thank you sir, for your advice. Will seriously try.

@ Numerounity, thanks. I saw your post, the story was really amazing.

@ Holy Lama, I am absent minded too. Just this morning I needed reminding about my daughters' birthdays the coming month. Sigh. My brain is giving up on me.

Deepanjan Ghosh said...

Hey, choppers nowadays come wih noise suppression. They even have stealth technology!!!

Shaunak Mukherjee said...

Thanks Aparna. I'm honoured you like my name so much.
See you around! :)

Unknown said...

They do ?! Thats interesting, surely.

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