When I used to work in the Brickell area of Miami I remember I was on the train one morning and saw the most amazing thing. These 2 little boys came in. The older one was about 5 years old and his brother was about 2. The 5 year old lead his brother to a seat, placed him on it and stood in front of him. They went 2 stops at which time the older child took his brother off the seat and lead him off the train.
I was in tears being so proud of them – yes I freaked when I realized they were alone. My son at the time was 13 and I still wouldn’t think of letting him take the train alone. I also remembered something I had heard once on TV “The more affluent the family, the more dependent the child.” At that moment I fully appreciated the truth in this statement.
When my son goes to see his father in Los Angeles he learns self reliance. My ex-husband doesn’t take time off when my son is there, so he has to find his way to UCLA for swim practice. With that said the route is 2 buses in the span of an hour and a half to get there from his father’s house. Over the years he had to fly alone cross country and one year he got to go on a over-night camp at UCI for swimming. I know if it was up to me and my parents, the boy would never have had those experiences. For this I’ll always be grateful to his dad.
This year because of those experiences I sent him to Boston on a 2 week SAT prep class and college tour with Abbey Road Programs. Quite a few of my friends and family were shocked that I sent him alone on this program. While he was gone I wasn’t worried as I knew that he was capable of looking out for himself and trusted that he would call if he needed any sort of help.
He had a Fabulous time and I see more of the man he is becoming because of it.