Sunday, October 17, 2004

they're everywhere!

At our cross-cultural training before we moved overseas, we were taught an exercise to help us decipher different behavior we observe in a new culture. I've tried to apply this to a strange phenomenon here in Singapore and I had, up until last night, been unable to draw any conclusions. My observation is this: There are pregnant Singaporean women everywhere. As I've observed this I've wondered, "Is it a good zodiac year? (that can account for it in China), Is it because there are such cute maternity clothes here? Is that how they stay warm indoors? (see post below). Do they just like being big?"

Last night, Erik gave me what I hope is a reliable answer. Apparently, the government gives people financial incentives to having children - you get $9,000 Sing for your second and a whopping $18,000 Sing for your third. This supposedly is in response to Singaporean women having fewer babies and focusing instead on having a career. So hey - if you want to earn some fast cash, bring a couple of souls into the world. I'm sure a lot of thought went into this program and I'm oversimplifying, but it reminds me eerily of the one-child policy in China. It's frightening when something as precious as life becomes reduced to a society remedy.


Chris B. said...

Hey, I was just thinking about something. Maybe part of it is that you've been living in a country where you never saw pregnant women because they were supposed to be indoors. So now you're noticing how many pregnant women there are because there used to be hardly any. I was also thinking that maybe Singapore is playing a prank on you by having lots of women stuff basketballs under their clothes to make you think there's pregnant women everywhere.

Anonymous said...


Maybe secretly you would like a third reason to brag glowingly across the blog scene. Be careful with MOPs. I've heard mixed reviews; sometimes they can become a huge venting center for frustrated mothers. It can really drag down mom's who love raising their kids. Thanks for sending us this site. I really enjoy the way you write, and hearing about the adventures of Ethan and Megan.


Gina Marie said...


Thanks for the warning, but our group here seems pretty great. We have guidelines for discussion which include not speaking ill of husbands, etc. And since I'm a discussion group leader, I can guide how things are going. I'm just looking for a good place to connect and minister.

As for the other suggestion - that I'm hoping for another reason to brag - don't hold your breath! :) I think the Butz baby factory will be shutting its doors soon.