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Posts posted by arunadasi

  1. Quote

     And I REALLY like that parents must be involved in the education of their kids, this is very important in Germany, at the beginning it was hard, but now I think the Germans got that part correct."



    That was one mistake I made myself. I did not realise that parents are virtually co-teachers. I never practiced Diktat etc with my kids -- and unfortunately my husband didn't tell me that this was the requirement. I didn't do it because of my own schooling --  nobody ever gave me homework help and I didn't expect to have to do it. So I do claim some responsibility.

    But I also think it's really not fair for the parents to have to co-teach and practice. It gives parents with a good academic background a huge advantage over, for instance, working class or immigrant families -- particularly since it's the mothers who do most of the co-teaching.

    I anywat couldn't have co-taught mathematics. It was always my weakest subject, and I discovered that everything I knew from my own schooling was irrelevant here -- they use completely different methods for, for example, log division, multiplication, etc. I never understood the German methods.

    I think teaching is the teacher's job, not the parents.


  2. It definitely didn't work for my two kids. I hate to play the racism card, but my son was most definitely discriminated against by teachers as well as  other pupils. I won't go into details here but he was extremely bright -- I'd say even giften mathematically; he was reading  books far advance of his age by age 10. And yet they gave him a Realschulempfehlung. Even though he was perfectly bilingual English-German, he never got above a 2 in English once in the Realschule -- the teacher knew better. I don't want to go into details but that was the reason I sent him to private school in the UK.

    My daughter was dyslexic and they were channeling her into the Sonderschule.

    She too went to private school in the UK. She now has a first class honours degree from the UK and started a second degree at TUM Munich - which she had to break off because of pregnancy.

    Both would have failed in the German system, for different reasons -- but being "foreign" didn't help.


  3. I miss the sunshine. Ireland is as they say: mostly rainy and grey. And to think I always said I'd retire to a tropical country!

    However I can put up with it I've decided. It's cold I dislike rather than rain. And the people are maybe the best in Europe, certainly easier to get on with than Germans.


    I don't miss the lack of personal engagement between people. Here, everyone wants a chat with you, from the bus driver to the doctor; it's never just business as usual.

    The greeting  is How are you? And the established answer is Not too bad, as if "bad" is the default! 


  4. 26 minutes ago, arsenal21 said:

    Welcome back arundasi, hope you're getting on well in Ireland.


    You look much younger than 60 in your profile photo ;-) but I found this info on the nurse's union website, saying EU over 60s may be eligible for a medical card.



    I would suggest applying for a medical card in any case, it covers a lot of basic stuff.




    The photo in my profile is from 2017, taken on holiday in Sri Lanka! I'm a bit older now, going on 68. I'll update it soon.


    I have a medical card, but it is because of my Barmer insurance. I would not be eligible if I did not have the German insurance, as it is income based and I'm above the threshold.

    But I wouldn't need one, as I have Irish medical insurance as well as Beihilfe.


  5. aaaargh!

    I fought for ages to be in the KVdR, in the Pflichtversicherung -- they had me as Freiwillige and I was able to prove the 90% rule.

    It's not  a problem for me to "move" to the UK as my daughter lives there and a couple of my banks are registered there. It's like a 2. Wohnsitz as I often overnight with her.

    Do you think I might be able to claim it backdated as my WOhnsitz?



  6. Hello everyone, I'm back with an urgent question!

    First of all, a big wave. As many of you know, I retired to Ireland last year. I started out living in a room in a comfortable B&B with a lovely Irish couple in the coutryside; it saved money and also I had a bad hip and didn't want the responsibility for a home of my own. Also it gave me time to figure out how and where I really wanted to live.

    I moved into a nice brand new rented flat in town last month and all is well. My son had moved in with me and has a start up business, my daughter lives over the border in NI with husband and baby girl, and at the moment my other granddaughter is here on holiday. So all's well.


    But I'm having the usual problems with the Barmer.

    I'm still with them; they covered me automatically when I moved to Ireland.

    My income is as follows:

    The bulk of it is a widow's pension paid through the Versorgungsamt B.-W. Then I have my normal pension which is about 500€, and two other tiny pensions from Germany. And a tiny pension from the UK.


    I also have quarterly income from the sale of my books, which at the moment is quite good, at least as much  (annually) as all the pensions put together (but varies from year to year). The Barmer is still trying to work out how much my monthy Beitraege should be -- I didn't have to pay a single Beitrag last year as they are still figuring it out. One day I'll get a fat bill.



    I've been tax resident in Ireland since 1.1.18. I have an Irish accountant who is doing my taxes for that year; that is, my taxes from my self-employment.


    Last November I went to India for three months. This was soon after I had my hip operation and was part of my recovery. At this point I wrote the Barmer cancelling my insurance. I never heard back for them about this, not even after two reminders,


    (In 2017 I also went to India for three months. I was able to cancel my insurance immediately  for that time, and join back when I returned to Germany, so that I didn;t have to pay Beitraege while abroad. It all adds up after all.)


    Anyway. I wrote Barmer again recently, confirming once again my cancellation. They informed me I had to be in the German system in order to be covered by the Irish public system.


    I replied that, after a year, all residents of Ireland are automatically in the Irish system (HSE) and thus I don't need German insurance any more. The HSE isn't too good, it's slow and cumbersome and doesn't cover everything like the NHS, but it's free and it'll do for me as I also get German Beihilfe and I have a small Irish private insurance. No need to pay Barmer a couple hundred a month.


    Today they wrote back, as follows:


    ...fuer einen in einem anderen Mitgliedstaat wohnenden Rentner, der nur eine Rente aus der deutschen gesetzlichen Rentenversicherung bezieht, gelten die deutschen Rechtsvorschriften ueber die Krankenversicherung, wenn man keinen eigenen Leistungsanspruch im WOhnstaat hat


    Ein Anspruch (...) aufgrund des Wohnens, wie es bei Ihnen der Fall ist, ist nachrangig.


    Bezugnehmend auf Ihre Schreiben vom 17.08.19 teile ich Ihnen mit, dass bei Ihnen, da sie kein Einkommen durch eine Beschaeftigung oder durch eine Rente in Irland haben, weiterhin die deutschen Rechtsvorschriften gelten und sie Weiterhin in Deutschland bei der Barmer versichert sind.


    In other words, I'm not allowed to cancel my insurance policy? How can this be? they make such a fuss about accepting people; can they really force you to stay in if you live abroad and don't want to and have other arrangements?


    I did a bit of googling and found this:



    Bei Rentnern, die sich für ein Leben im Ausland entschieden haben, besteht in der Regel keine Versicherungspflicht bei der deutschen Krankenversicherung und Pflegeversicherung für Rentner. Entscheidend ist, in welches Land der Senior seinen neuen Wohnsitz verlegt.

    Befindet sich der Wohnsitz innerhalb der EU oder in einem Staat des Europäischen Wirtschaftsraumes oder der Schweiz, kann der Senior solange in der deutschen Kranken- und Pflegeversicherung versichert bleiben, wie er Rente aus Deutschland bezieht.


    So, it is "kann", not "muss"...???


    Grateful for all help and advice. Sorry this is so long. German Papierkrieg as usual...


    (Edited to add: I do indeed have a "Beschaeftigung in Irland". I am a writer and get income from this; although not paid from Ireland but from the UK.)



  7. 2 hours ago, lisa13 said:



    and regarding the athletics thing, trans women actually have lower levels of testosterone than cis women, and it's been shown that within a year of hormonal transition, they lose any biological edge they may have had as men.  They do continue to be larger if they completed puberty as males, so that edge doesn't disappear but otherwise, it's a wash.






    It's not just about hormones. Males that have had hormones and surgery still have a male pelvis shape, thigh bone length, height, lung volume, arm span and  muscles of a male. 


    55 minutes ago, Krieg said:

      Gender neutral toilets are basically everywhere when no big amount of toilets are needed.    But once you have the option suddenly having the right to have the option is a must.   But plenty of places do not have the option and no one complains.   




    In my experience these are usually single toilets, lockable, with no common space, for instance there are such toilets put up in the middle of cities in case someone has to go; of course they are better than nothing. And nobody is saying public female toilets are a "must"; it's just that when they do exist, for instance in restaurants, train stations and airports, they are a godsend for females because we do have other "needs", and I still don't see the benefit of opening the women's ones to men.


    As I said before: it's not just a question of safety or of being attacked; it's a question of privacy. Women use the restrooms for more than pee and crap. If we do have these spaces, we'd like to keep them, thank you. Yes, maybe it is female privilege; but don't you think a little privilege is due to us?


    There is a movement in the UK towards self ID which means that anyone at any time can declare themselves the opposite sex, and to question this is illegal. No hormones or operation needed. And you can change back the next day if you want. Do you really think that all men are so honourable as to not abuse the system? Even after the whole #metoo movement?


    How do you feel about the demand of transwomen that lesbians should have sex with transwomen with penises? That if they don't it's transphobic? Many lesbians in the UK are up in arms about this.


    I am concerned about the very definition of woman is being taken away from women, and with it go all our hard-won rights and protections. That is all. The bullying and aggression that goes with some of these activists is not at all "feminine", I have to say! And it is destroying a lot f the support and kindness women felt towards trans people in the past. Many body dysphoric transpeople  have spoken out against it and are just as concerned. It does not work in their favour. Even with this mild post of my opinion I'll probably be labelled a transphobe or terf!


  8. 11 minutes ago, john g. said:

    The only thing I care about is:

    is the toilet clean (ish)? Does it flush? Is paper there? Is there soap to clean my hands? Don´t care who is also there.

    Crete as a whole: fail.

     India too, where I am now. Which is why I NEVER use public toilets here, unless in top class hotels! (Or at the airport, when I have to to.)


    A major problem in India is poor rural women who have no toilets at all and have to go in the fields. This is where predators wait and where they are sometimes raped. A toilet at home is a luxury for these women.


    This was actually my situation when I was 23 and living in a hut without a toilet or bathroom. I used to go in the field next door with a spade. Wait till there was noone around -- the only other people who "went" there were sadhus.


  9. 2 minutes ago, LeonG said:


    Some guys are bothered by it but it would be considered petty or wimpy to complain.  I've only see a couple of times that men have given a look or said "hey, this is the mens" in such circumstances.  Nobody got maced, nobody called security.


    So do women actually change their tampons while out in the open standing by the sinks?  Or they do it in a cubicle?  If they tend to do it by the sinks, I guess you have a point.


    No, they don't do it standing outside but I've seen a woman with a huge period "accident" in the restroom and she needed help from others as she didn't have a change of clothes. This does happen.  I've seen countless women changing their clothes because they are going to a party after work or something. And as I said above, when travelling to or from Asia I see women changing their outfits completely.


    Only once I used the men's but it was at an Autobahn service station in France and the women's queue was a mile long! So some lady who worked there took a bunch of us into the men's. You couldn't/shouldn't do that the other way around. 



    16 minutes ago, LeonG said:


    That's not true.  Men also have to tolerate feminine looking persons walking into the mens.  Some may be transmen, some may be non binaries and some may even be women who are avoiding the long line in the ladies room.  The last bit is actually common where I come from, especially at the clubs.


    I did say in my post above that " I think men don't mind about privacy that much. " We ARE different, have different biological needs and different privacy needs. A woman walking past a row of men standing at a urinal? Men tend to shrug it off. You say it's common where you're from -- but is there a huge protest on the part of men? They "tolerate" it, you say. Women don't tolerate it. Men walking past a woman changing her tampon? Well...


    Do you see the difference?


  11. I think I saw an intersex baby when I was 20, travelling in Ecuador. Born to a woman in an Ecuadorian fishing village. I saw the baby just after it was born and couldn't tell the sex. I asked the women there (midwife delivery) and they just shrugged. I often thought about that baby over the years, wondering what happened. I had no idea at the time that such a thing as intersex existed.


  12. No.Women know that they can do that there, just as they know they can put on makeup, cry, vomit  when they've drunk too much, deal with period accidents etc in the ladies'. It's a private space for all these intimate things. That's what the space in front of the ladies' loos is for. We understand that. Just like the changing rooms  and showers at swimming pools -- lots of naked women in there. You don't think, oh hell, someone might get offended seeing me naked. You just get out of your things. But you don't want men walking in while doing so.


  13. 33 minutes ago, LeonG said:


    So if you are going to the ladies and some person there is disturbed that you are changing your clothes there or whatever, would you stop doing it? 

    It's not that THEY are disturbed that I am changing my clothes, it's that I don't want some male walking in on me when I'm doing it! :)



    Or what if you had a female who looks masculine, should she refrain from going to the ladies because her presence might offend someone?  Should she go to the mens even though her presence there might also offend someone and it might be unsafe for her?



    I don't have an answer to the trans problem, but I think single toilets are probably best. My concern is solely about making all toilets available for everyone; ie "gender neutral"  = no private space for women and girls. I think men don't mind about privacy that much. i know that in France sometimes when the women's queues get too long they just march into the men's. (gender neutral is a misnomer. My argument is about bodies, not about gender; bodily functions and privacy for those who need it. )


  14. 2 hours ago, dj_jay_smith said:



    I kind of think, go into the toilet that YOU want.  I don't care what you bits look like, how you use them.  If you want a bit or privacy then the cubicles are available (maybe we should only have cubicles?)

     You cannot change your clothes in a cubicle. Well, I suppose you can but it's awkward.


    And nobody has yet answered the question: are there urinals in these "everybody can use them" restrooms?

    Going into the toilet that YOU want is not an option if it disturbs the privacy and dignity of others. But I guess men aren't bothered ovemuch.


  15. I'm happy for them to answer the call of nature in a secure way. But it should not be at the expense of the privacy, intimacy and security of women and girls, who have really had  to fight for their private spaces and shouldn't be bullied into sharing with male bodied people , And I am not the religious right. There are more than two sides to this discussion.


  16. Ireland might be a good option... if you are on a low income you can get a medical card and all will be paid, and even if not, the public health system does support you, just that you have to pay a bit for consultations etc. My own doctor was very lax about it even before I got a medical card (which I got because of my German health insurance.)

    You can take out private health insurance there as well, which is a fraction of German private health insurance. 

    Rents are pretty high but they love artists and there are all sorts of grants. My daughter's sister in law is self employed as an artist (singer) and seems to be quite happy with her low income and occasional jobs.


  17. 9 hours ago, hooperski said:



    Seems to be a theme with Trump fans, not being mean just honest. (sic) Or maybe they're just stupid and thick skinned.

    Your OWN bathroom is gender neutral you fucking idiot.



    8 hours ago, john g. said:

    She also writes she doesn´t want men in her toilet/bathroom. OK!  Who am I  to hassle in that regard? 

    ( Not that I´ve always been sober and found the right door..)

    Too political your side, babe.

    She is also really young..think back to your own twatishness...I surely messed up thousands of you did, too...


    I won't get into a discussion about gender-neutrality bad or good but about toilets, I will have a say. I really don't get why everyone seems to take it for granted that "gender neutral" toilets are a good thing, or why you're an idiot if you don't agree.


    A public toilet is not the same as your private toilet at home. I really don't want to share a public toilet -- with stalls -- with men, strangers, and I would have thought most women don't either. Women like to stand at the mirrors putting on makeup etc (not me, I don't wear makeup) but much worse is they sometimes change clothes there. I have often changed clothes in a public restroom -- especially on long haul flights from Asia to Europe. I don't want men in there.


    Then again, I would have thought that men prefer toilets with urinals. Do these gender neural toilets have urinals or not? If so, do women really want to walk past men pissing? If not, do men really want to join long queues with women to use stalls for a quick pee? 


    If men use stalls to pee they will leave the seats up. They will also leave the doors open most likely.  They will also leave urine splatters on the floor. Does anyone really want to walk in urine splatter? This is why German housewives campaign to get men to sit! And it's possible to keep your private toilet floor clean and free of splatter, not so a public one. 


    So I don't why Hoops assumes that gender neutral toilets are so wonderful. Really, nobody cares about your gender when using a toilet. They care about your sex; using a toilet is a sex-based, body based thing, we do it differently and there should be two kinds of toilets, for privacy and hygiene reasons. Also for the protection of young girls who are usually really shy about these things, and do need protection from guys. Young boys too, maybe.. Also Indian ladies, Middle Eastern ladies, they are all very shy (and also change clothes a lot in restrooms) and I'm sure they don't want to share. This is assuming of course that this gender-neutral-toilet trend goes global, which I'm sure it won't!

    There, I said it! Go after me! ;)


  18. As some of you here know, my husband had dementia. I cared for him at home for a few years but in the end he had to go into home care. Of course I felt guilty at first, but it was also a great relief as the physical care became too much for me, and being more relaxed meant I could visit him in the home and be with him.

    He also refused food in his final year. Against my better instinct and advice from palliative care professionals in the hospital where I worked, I authorised for him to get a feeding tube. I did it because his Hausarzt advised me to as did the care home staff. And I didn't want his older kids to accuse me of letting him starve to death. Maybe I should have stood my ground and spared him the feeding tube as he just vegetated for the last year of his life. It was not a good thing.

    Then he passed away. That was a year ago.

    Today would have been his 75th birthday. Thinking of you, Juergen!


  19. 14 hours ago, john g. said:

    My issue has been trying to understand the quote system on here, dear Bayrish! For MORE THAN 54 years, you youngster you!!!:lol::lol:

    ( and also trying to understand why I click one smilie thing and two appear...probably an issue with trying to understand partnership...)!!!


    As long as you are smiling john I am happy. Keep smiling -- the more smileys the merrier!