On this forum, we often share our queries, doubts and frustrations regarding our bilingual kids. But we don't necessarily say what we bilingual parents like best and hate most on this journey. Would you care to share?
Since I started this thread, I'll start with mine: I like best being in this exceptional position to pass onto my kids a (linguistic) blessing I myself was given as a child. I hate most is not always being understood by monolingual parents.
Over to you!
***"Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - Oscar Wilde***
For me personally, the best thing about this bilingual journey is the fact that I can communicate freely with my children in my native language (and watch them communicate with extended family as well). While there are parents able to connect deeply with their children in a non-native language (plenty of them at this forum!), I'm afraid that wasn't really possible in my case and so this helped fuel my efforts for the bilingual goal from early on (as I've shared in greater detail in the post Why Communicating in English with Kids Is So Important to Me).
In fact, there are many, many more things I appreciate about this experience than things I dislike, but perhaps one thing is that the average person assumes that my children have gained their ability in English simply because I'm a native speaker of this language, as if this has required little effort on my part. But, in fact, just the opposite is true and I've had to work very hard at this, day after day after day, for years!
I understand that this assumption comes from a lack of awareness, though, so I don't really blame them for this mistaken idea.
Adam Beck is the founder of Bilingual Monkeys and The Bilingual Zoo, and the author of the book "Maximize Your Child's Bilingual Ability", praised worldwide by parents and experts in the field. Available at Amazon amzn.to/22XKuCt, the global Amazon sites, and other booksellers.
Maybe not as extreme, but here are two things I really like and dislike:
I like most that my daughter gets the chance to be bilingual and have those two languages and cultures from the start.
What I don't like is people who go about "oh how nice for her to speak German [our ml], that'll be a great advantage later for work!" and I'm like, this is about family and culture and belonging, and not job chances.
What's on your mind right now? Just type and hit "Enter" to share it here!
Raquel: I love it, Mayken! What a sweet lady. I would have listened in and not asked, hehe. Did you use it to show your daughter how useful the ml can be?
Dec 21, 2017 20:35:38 GMT 9
Mayken: Raquel, my daughter loved it - both the coincidence, and that this lady was learning our language!
Dec 24, 2017 22:25:47 GMT 9
Adam Beck: Happy New Year to you all! Let's make 2018 a really good year!
Dec 31, 2017 7:04:50 GMT 9
Joanna: Packing to go home from Canada...luggage scale reading 23 kg of minority language books!
Dec 31, 2017 23:48:06 GMT 9
Amy: Happy new year to all! . May 2018 bring you every success in your bilingual endeavours!
Jan 1, 2018 23:08:58 GMT 9
Mayken: Happy new year to everyone! I shared a little New Year's Eve story in the Snack Bar.
Jan 5, 2018 5:08:21 GMT 9
Mayken: 7yo wrote her Christmas letter in the ml and sent it to Santa's address in our ml country. This week she received his reply - and was somewhat offended that he replied in the ML
Jan 5, 2018 21:47:21 GMT 9
Adam Beck: That's very cute, Mayken!
Jan 6, 2018 7:57:09 GMT 9
Amy: Oh no Mayken!! I'd also feel very gutted in her shoes! Hope he made up for it by spoiling her on Xmas!
Jan 7, 2018 1:12:53 GMT 9
Mayken: He totally did, Amy! Especially her most important wish - the second illustrated Harry Potter (in ml, of course).
Jan 9, 2018 0:06:05 GMT 9
Raquel: Happy 2018!! How come Santa replied in the wrong language? That's weird.
Jan 9, 2018 19:26:41 GMT 9
Mayken: Raquel, he gets letters from all over the world at that German address, and I guess the reply is in the language that matches the country fo the child's return address. Next time she'll use my mom's address (if she still wants to write to Santa then).
Jan 10, 2018 0:38:19 GMT 9
Raquel: Mayken, I just was surprised that, reading a letter in a certain language, they would reply in a different one. But if it's an standarized letter, then it makes total sense.
Jan 10, 2018 21:42:23 GMT 9
Mayken: It is. Our local ML Santa, to whom my daughter wrote the year before (in ml) replied in ML too but started the letter with her name. But then he's serving a town of 37,000 people only.
Jan 10, 2018 23:18:32 GMT 9
Raquel: Makes sense, Mayken. Thanks for explaining.
Jan 11, 2018 22:31:51 GMT 9
Mayken: My daughter called me out twice this week for using the wrong language with her. The second time it was only one work (number of a métro line).
Jan 12, 2018 0:16:39 GMT 9