Last year we taught our daughter to drive. She was a little hesitant at first as she had relied on others up until that point to get around.
We took her to the nearby university on a weekend to drive around in the deserted outer carparks and get her bearings in the vehicle. It takes a bit of practice to understand how responsive the controls are, how tight a turning circle you can take and get a feel for acceleration and deceleration. We wanted to make sure that she could do all those things without worrying about running into things such as cars, pedestrians or other objects.
She looked comfortable, although at times had a little trouble turning left. She seemed surprised initially that she could make the vehicle go herself. She is naturally cautious by nature, but doesn’t get stressed out. She nuts things out until she masters them, but for driving, she needed a little extra encouragement.
We encouraged and supported her. We knew that this was a crucial time in her life and her ability to drive would not only enable her to gain her much-needed independence, but also lay the foundations for her life ahead, enabling her to make friends, explore the world around her and increase her learning opportunities. It was difficult to make her see that as she had no experience at that time of the things she may miss out on, opportunities other kids her age took for granted because they had always had them.
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