>Growing up too fast?


I find myself thinking that bringing back National Service for men between the ages of 15 and 35 might be an excellent thing. I also entertain pleasant fantasies about the compulsory culling of those who obstinately refuse to learn the rules of the apostrophe.

(Lynne Truss in Talk to The Hand The Utter Bloody Rudeness of Everyday Life)

Mum called me to the dining room just now. Her face a picture of panic. ‘Look at this. Aamena’s writing letters to boys. Zehir and Zahid. She’s only eight years old…’ I felt the world collapsing around my ears. I’ve witnessed first-hand the proficiency of primary school flirts. At least they were nine years-old. Surely we still have a year to bask in her disarmingly innocent world view. Mum’s in a panic. The hand-made envelope says, ‘To Zahid and Zehir Thank you From Aamena.’ Do I rip it open? Will it signal an end to thinking of Aamena as a child? She still watches the Cartoon Network. She hasn’t even latched onto Hannah Montana yet. Is it a sister’s place to peek into personal correspondence thus? Her life suddenly passes before my eyes. It’s unethical. I can’t. How would I feel if my correspondence was so haplessly subjected to public scrutiny? No, I would fear more for the public than my correspondence. But little Aamena. Sweet, little Aamena. Eight years old! She did pick up the art of ordering a latte rather early. But writing letters to boys! Nonsense! We’ll nip this in the bud. With little deference to the envelope, I rip it open. Mum watches, expectant. Doom has come a-knocking.

To: Zahid & Zehir

From: Aamena

I am very sorry for teezing you. Please forgive me. I am really sorry. I didn’t mean it. I was just playing with you. I beg please forgive me.


I breathe a sigh of relief. Not juvenile flirtation. Just one spelling mistake. Apostrophe used correctly. But teasing other kids? Hadn’t we taught her any better? Aamena….

14 replies on “>Growing up too fast?”

>and she took on TWO guys, she not didn’t just teeez them, she teeeezed em so much she had to apologise. She’s a strong one.

>not to worry tazeen, i remember reading somewhere, youth is such a wonderful thing to be wasted on children :p

>bbaisha, sadly so.

faisalk, she’s the youngest, i think it’s a natural reaction from all of us to want to cosset her from the big, bad world.

True, it is a protective culture, but done in moderation and with the knowledge that she is her own person who will grow up to make her own decisions, is it really such a bad thing?

thanks to both of you for the visit!

>stop the over protection puhleeeze…its so ingrained in our culture we just pass it on…

haai hoo ye dekho uggh

>aww, so cute. concern is justified though, everything seems so tainted that we doubt the innocence of children

>globalcitizen, I find that very hard to believe!… :p

8bitsofcoffee, she is a little smarty mshAllah
I agree, no better entertainment than tom & jerry.

workinprogress, hehe i only know how to be the annoying older sister especially when it comes to achieving a satisfactory level of communicative competence :p

the link's a pleasure, merci for the reciprocation.

killa, I have nothing against hannah montana but I do worry how kids who are fed a hannah montana tv diet are going to turn out… into twenty four year olds who watch hanna montana perhaps? :p (NB comment is made tongue in cheek and is not meant to be offensive)

princess and killa, :)) the joys of childhood.

waseem, A talented writer as yourself should leave an editor to worry about punctuation.

very good questions.
After much cajoling, I got it out of her. She had called them 'pretty boys'. I was horrified. I asked if she knew what a pretty boy was. She replied, 'A boy that is pretty'. All my fears were once again raised. I asked tentatively whether these boys were pretty. She was horrified, 'No! Their jackets had 'pretty boy' printed on it…'

She was embarrassed at first, upset and then she cried. I felt terrible. But ssssh the official line is mum opened the letter…

>Ah I think I’m bit liberal with punctuation at times. I think I am much too punctuationally retarded to consider a career in writing.

Two questions … What did she tease them about? What was her reaction to you guys reading her letter?

>1stly – There is nothing worng with watching Hannah Montana.. I know of a few 24 yr olds that still do so..

Innoncense defined.. Thats what the post was.. I understand the concern of the parent bearing in mind the media interests in Mxit and Facebook etc..

But truly.. A sweet gesture of apology..

*wishes im 8 again*


>I finally get why big sisters (brothers) can be so friggin annoying. I think I may even have turned into one.

It’s normal for kids to tease others – think it’s just part of growing up isn’t it?

At least she’s been taught proper grammar 🙂

>Oh deary my! You got me whispering "Don't let it be flirtatious" with one eye open and the other closed 😛

She's smart though, msh'Allah, realizing her mistake and apologizing, some, no MOST, kids won't even bother.

When dad and I are home alone we watch Tom & Jerry instead of the news. Now, that's entertainment.

>Ohhh, that sweet innocence of childhood!

Obviously, your mum had to worry, but I guess that sweet,little Aamena won’t be 8 forever.

I still watch Hannah Montana, you know! 😀

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