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You don't have to walk alone!

17-year-old Ivan* was playing football with his friends when he met the MOST team. Through different weeks of football and conversation, Ivan shared his academic journey and his struggles as his path diverged from his friends. He was able to overcome them and continue his journey because of the support he received from his family.

Here is his story:

"In 2023, I took my N levels along with the rest of my friends. I managed to score almost all As, I only had one B for my Mother Tongue. I was happy with my results. All my friends had plans and wanted to move forward in life. However, my parents said that my results were not good enough.

They felt that my attitude and results were poor and wanted to send me to National Service (NS). My plans crashed and I felt betrayed and angry. I didn’t want to go to NS so early. I felt that they looked down on me and my effort. I couldn’t believe that they would decide on this without discussing it with me.

I felt trapped and pushed into a corner. They didn’t give me many choices. I either had to enlist in the army or do a lateral transfer and repeat secondary school. I didn’t like either choice because I would be alone in both choices. People would look at me weird in school because I would be older than them, and if I went to the army I would be younger than everyone else.

As I deliberated over my choices, my uncle and aunty reached out to me as they were curious about my results and what I would do in the future. They were kind and listened to me as I shared my problems. They offered to tutor me and gave me their support in any decision I made and would stand by me.

After the conversation with them, I picked up my courage and spoke to my parents again. I was surprised that they listened to what I had to say. They told me that they had no one to help them make major decisions and they had regrets over some decisions they made.

They tried to help me make this decision so that I would have a better future. I shared my feelings with them and we reconciled. I decided to do the lateral transfer and get better grades so that I could have more choices in the future.

Although it has been difficult to adapt to having more subjects and more difficult topics, I know I can count on my aunty and uncle as well as my friends to tutor me and support me. I am aiming to get into the Polytechnic Foundation Programme and I am working hard to achieve my goals.

I am glad I decided to speak to my parents again. I understood them better after we had a difficult conversation. Even if I didn’t understand how they love me at first, I now know that they care for me and my future. I am not alone and there are people who love and care for me."

We hope that you’ve been inspired by his story and see the significance of our belief in young people! If you can relate to this story, you can consider being a mentor to our youths and provide them a listening ear and help them through difficult decisions!

*Names have been changed to protect the identity of our youths.

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