Dear Vipey, Saya sudah baca tulisanmu di Magdalene tentang adopsi, my first tought is…… ada ya laki-laki sebaik kamu. Saya ingin adopsi anak ketika di masa depan tapi khawatir masy yg omong jelek2 ke anak saya nanti. We can’t control the society, right? :(

True, we can’t control what society says. But we can control how we react to it, and how our child will deals with it. Tapi beneran deh, rata2 orang ngga akan peduli kok. Never overestimate how much people think or talk about us.. they really don’t care that much. And the ones who do, will be people whose opinions mean nothing to you anyways.

Sorry ya, ini saya reply setelah lebih dari sebulan. In general, I never reply to any questions that contain compliments of any sort. But since the rest of your question was relevant enough, let me say it one more time: adoption has NOTHING to do with being “baik.” I do things because it personally feels right, and because I find it rewarding. So in the end, it’s a selfish reason like any other.

Vipey, I’m not a nurturing kind of gal. Getting along with kids are hard for me. I think having kids is expensive (I have to pay for their education, health, entertainment, etc.). And I’m not sure I have the patience to be a mom. Do you think every woman feel this way before they get to be a mom?

Not every woman, no. Most women like kids, and look forward to having kids. Is it wrong to feel otherwise? Not at all. Terserah aja sih, masing2. Having children isn’t an obligation, it isn’t an achievement.. it is simply a choice. Nothing more, nothing less.

On the other hand, I also know several women who felt exactly the same way you do, but became the most wonderful and loving mothers anyways. But the way I see it, it’s not something you should gamble on. If it’s not your thing, then don’t have kids. It’s not worth the “ya siapa tahu.” As I said, ngga ada kewajiban samasekali kok.

Although you are right about having kids is expensive. Yes, it is. But ibaratnya a hobby you have, if you love something, you’ll find a way to make it happen. And it will be totally worth it.

What do you think about parents who body shame their kids (either too fat, too skinny, too short, too tall, etc) and justified it by saying that they care?

I think society and the media already body-shames us enough, so the idea that there are parents that blatantly do the same just blows my mind. So if our own parents can’t instill self-esteem in us, what hope do we have? I’ve heard it often; yang ortunya nyuruh ke weight clinic, suruh potong gusi, ke skin clinic, suruh reconstructive surgery. Padahal yang punya muka/tubuh tidak merasa bermasalah.

So why do some parents do that? Because the prettier their daughter, the higher the probability she will snag a wealthy man… who in turn bisa menaikkan “harkat dan martabat keluarga” through marriage. So in a way, the daughter is used as a pawn for their own interest. Is that “caring”? I can’t say… but that ain’t the definition in my own parenting book.

To you women out there who have parents like this, they would NEVER admit that this is their motive. But mark my words: this is what it’s all about. After all, it’s MUCH easier to invest in PAP-worthy physical looks, than raising a daughter who is desirable to men based on her character and intelligence alone.

Serious question. So, I have a lil daughter. If someday she got married, is it okay if I make an agreement with her soon to be husband that I can do anything to him if she ever hurt her? Or am I just over protective? Thanks.

It depends on what you mean by “hurt.”

If you think the man she is going to marry has anger management issues, then it’s up to you warn your daughter about it. And you might want to think about WHY your daughter mau2nya sama orang yang tidak bisa mengendalikan emosi. Sorry to say, it might have to do with how she was raised. The only reason why people behave a certain way is because ada aja yang mau stay with them, despite such behaviour.

But if you define “hurt” as “sakit hati”, well… just because someone sakit hati or heartbroken, it does not mean your daughter di pihak yang benar. It might be hard to believe, but our kids are not saints. They might have their own manipulative ways, and when their hidden agenda doesn’t go as planned.. they feel hurt. Maaf ya, itu urusan sendiri2. Being manipulative and deceitful isn’t the domain of the male gender. Women are just as capable of doing so, and even BETTER at “pulling victim” when it happens.

I’m not sure if this answers your question… but it might give you perspective.

Hai, mau tau soal dmn sekolahin anaknya, skrg kebanyakan yg bagus tuh either islamic bgt atau kristen bgt, saya cari sekolah yang err lebih moderat n liberal. Since I know you wouldn’t put ur daughter to that kind of school, jd mau tanya dmn yg pas buat non believers like us. Thanks

Dia kami sekolahkan disini:

Menurut saya sih ini sekolah yang *sesuai* dengan harapan saya untuk anak. Soal “bagus” or not, itu sangat relatif. That really depends on what type of person you aspire your child to be. Sekolah ini tetap mengajarkan agama, tapi juga memahami that some kids prefer to use reason and logic over dogma. To be a minority in a country like this, that is something I am grateful enough for.

But from what I know, this school isn’t for *any* parent. Karena memang sangat melibatkan orangtua dalam mendidik anak (which doesn’t work for the “ya itu kan tugas sekolah untuk mendidik!” type of parents), dan pendekatan yang, well.. might seem a bit too Ubud/”Semesta”/Anak Alam for some people. So yes, urusan cocok2an.

Example: the kids have a morning yoga session, which of course involves the “salam matahari” pose. One of the (tampang stress) GBU parents got *very* upset and pulled their kid out of school the next day. My first thought was “man, that’s how fragile your faith is.”

Dear Vipey, I wanna have a kid. But I don’t really wanna get married. Any advice? No orang tua asuh please. Thanks.

You know, not that I am dismissing your question… but I’d be a rich man if I got seribu perak for every time I hear someone say “ngapain nikah?! bayi tabung/adopsi aja!!” Mending kalau anyone actually carries through with it and DOES IT. But nobody ever does. Ujung2nya ya toh menikah juga. Sudahlah, we are more mainstream than we think we are, kok. And that is fine. There is nothing uncool about getting married and having children. But the fact of the matter is, di Indonesia hampir tidak ada yang akhirnya tetap single dan adopsi. I said “hampir” because I know one person who was adopted by his unmarried mother.

But okay.. for the sake of your question, let’s say you want to raise a kid. Again, this is Indonesia. Titip anak ke saudara etc sepertinya sudah sangat common ya. There are many kids without parents, or yang orangtuanya tidak mau/mampu mengurus. If you want to do it, it can be done.

And for any of you who say “Urusan legalnya gimana? Kan ngga gampang! Apa jaminannya!?”

Let me say this to you:

Are there any potential complications in adoption? Yes, of course there is.

But think about it this way:

Statistically speaking, your marriage has a much higher chance of failing than adoption.

And yet you all do it anyway.

Why? Because it’s worth the risk.

Have any films drastically changed the way you feel/ think about certain things? Whether it be social issues or even how you perceive life. Please share some of those films and the story of how those films changed things for you. Thank you :)

I have a feeling this will be a question I’ll revisit over time, deleting and adding new snippets.

But for a quick and lazy saturday morning answer, here we go:

During my young and opinionated pre-internet years, I wrote a short article for a Bandung newspaper (remember those?) on “Analisa Korelasi Terminator 2, Aliens, dan Motherhood.” (Yeah, I forgot the exact title.) Anyways.. I argued that the toughest testosterone male action heroes cannot hold a candle to a mother protecting her young. And a woman will transform into a fighting machine overnight (no Special Forces training or tour in ‘Nam necessary) if her offspring is in danger. Once the maternal instinct kicks in and turns primal, even the Expendables would just pack up and leave.

So why Terminator 2 and Aliens? Both movies explore those themes. How Sarah Connor stopped at nothing to protect her son, and how Ripley carried Newt while wielding a flamethrower against the Alien Queen (who was in turn, protecting her breed). And let’s not forget her iconic line: “Get away from her, you bitch.”

Come to think of it.. the best thing about the pre-internet days, silly stuff you published when you were 19 don’t come back to haunt you.

Hi Adrian you seem like a great guy, do you wish maybe someday you’ll married? cause I think you’ll become a great husband or dad. if you don’t, why?

Regarding your question: I have nothing against marriage. If I ever meet someone I cannot imagine living another day without, yeah sure I’ll get married. BUT.. probabilitas-nya rendah sekali. Like, close to zero.

Bukan soal ngga akan ketemu orangnya, tapi lebih ke.. I have no reason to start a family, because I already have one. Confused yet? Maybe this piece I wrote under a pseudonym might clarify it: