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Thread: Britain's Gypsy Kids: What It's Like Growing Up As A Traveller Where Childhood Is Short

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    Default Britain's Gypsy Kids: What It's Like Growing Up As A Traveller Where Childhood Is Short

    Britain's gypsy kids: What it's really like
    growing up as a traveller
    where childhood is short -
    and the young girls dream of cleaning and keeping house


    * Channel 5 documentary finds out what it is like to grow up as a traveller

    * Girls admit they will leave school at 11 to tidy homes and care for children

    * Boys are expected to work with horses and drive by the age of 12

    * One grandfather laments how short their youngsters' childhoods are


    By Lucy Waterlow for MailOnline
    PUBLISHED: 1st September 2016

    Gypsy girls grow up dreaming of keeping house and having children and will rarely even attend secondary school, a new documentary reveals.

    According to the Channel 5 series, traditional gender roles remain an important part of the gypsy community, with girls as young as 11 keen to leave school so they can maintain a tidy home.

    One eight-year-old, Margaret - who is from an Irish traveller family and is the granddaughter of Celebrity Big Brother winner Paddy Doherty - now lives on a site in North Wales. She says she doesn't intend to continue her education after leaving primary school, despite being a star pupil.


    Eight-year-old Margaret, an Irish traveller, says she intends to leave school when she is 11 despite being a star pupil


    Margaret said she would rather stay at home cleaning and helping to look after her younger siblings rather than going to secondary school when she is older


    Six-year-old Rihanna said when she grows up she wants to be a cleaner

    'When I leave school I will probably be 11. I would rather stay home and clean up,' she said on the first episode of Gypsy Kids: Our Secret World.

    She added: 'I am looking forward to leaving school so I can do my own thing. I will help my mummy.'

    Six-year-old Rihanna who lives in Durham has similar ambitions.

    She said: 'When I grow up I would like to be a cleaner, cleaning tiles.'

    Margaret wants to follow in the footsteps of her older sister Rosanne, 12, who left school when she was 11 along with other girls her age from their community.

    She explains: 'We were getting a bit old to go to school. Why would we want to learn anything at school? We are not going to be doing anything like that.'


    Margaret wants to be like her older sister Rosanne, 12, who left school when she was 11


    Margaret's sister Rosanne, 12, left, pictured with a friend, said she doesn't think it is right for teenagers to go to school when they could be at home cleaning




    Margaret - who is from an Irish traveller family and is the granddaughter of Celebrity Big Brother winner Paddy Doherty (pictured) - says she doesn't intend to continue her education after leaving primary school, despite being a star pupil

    Girls like Margaret and Rosanne can be as young as 16 when they get married and most will become mothers not long after, having gained experience of childcare by looking after their younger siblings.

    Rosanne said it is a path she's happy to follow and she doesn't think it is 'right' that 'gorgas' (non travellers) stay on at school as teenagers.

    She said: 'I don't think it is right for older children to go to school. You are supposed to be at home feeding your children or your baby brothers and sisters.

    'An 18-year-old going to school is not right. If you don't have a clean home people will call you names.'

    Her friend added: 'When I get older I don't want to do a job, we don't really believe in having jobs.'


    Oliver is only 12 but he can already drive a car with confidence


    Oliver pictured on horseback has been riding since he was a baby and wants to be a farrier

    But Margaret's grandfather Paddy Doherty doesn't want his granddaughter to be like her peers and wants her to carry on at school to maximise her potential.

    He believes the gypsy community needs to move with the times instead of holding on to all their old values.

    He said: 'A lot of people think the child wants to come out of school but it is all to do with the family. We make them old fashioned.'

    'Every child needs to learn to read and write even if their parents can't, it is very important.'

    Paddy believes the gypsy community need to let children be children as they currently grow up too fast.

    'I have a grandson and he's 13 but he's like 21. All the traveller boys are like that, like grown men,' he said.


    A new Channel 5 series reveals what it is like for children to grow up in gypsy communities


    The girls have their roles as mothers and housewives carved out for them


    Margaret's grandfather hopes she will buck the trend and stay at school

    The documentary focuses on one of these man-boys, Oliver, from Surrey who at the age of 12 can already drive a car with confidence.

    He's also an experienced horse handler who can ride a horse without wearing a saddle and enjoys keeping the animals in good health.

    He has dreams of being a farrier one day.

    His sister Mary Kate said he was born to do such a job, while she will become a housewife.

    She said: 'Since Oliver has been a baby he has been going on horses. The travellers see it as the boys do the horses and work and the girls stay at home and cook and clean.'

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/ar...traveller.html
    Last edited by ♥ Lily ♥; 08-05-2018 at 11:50 AM.

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    interesting, gypsy and travellers marry young and become adults young. interesting is that i never grew up like that, growing up i did everything like any other person. i went to school, i went to university etc. no one told me to get married, my sister neither. i know many other roma like that, i had problems because of my skin colour/blood/ancestry but not because of my lifestyle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mortimer View Post
    interesting, gypsy and travellers marry young and become adults young. interesting is that i never grew up like that, growing up i did everything like any other person. i went to school, i went to university etc. no one told me to get married, my sister neither. i know many other roma like that, i had problems because of my skin colour/blood/ancestry but not because of my lifestyle.
    Well you are sensible. Irish Travellers are stuck in a time warp and I am in no way racist but they are doing nothing to help themselves. Even this girl's grandfather Paddy Doherty "doesn't want his granddaughter to be like her peers and wants her to carry on at school to maximise her potential." Now he is a wise man. Irish Travellers are just a subset of the Irish population and they can still carry on a lot of the customs and get an education as well. They should have to obey the law and go to school until a certain age like everyone else.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grace O'Malley View Post
    Well you are sensible. Irish Travellers are stuck in a time warp and I am in no way racist but they are doing nothing to help themselves. Even this girl's grandfather Paddy Doherty "doesn't want his granddaughter to be like her peers and wants her to carry on at school to maximise her potential." Now he is a wise man. Irish Travellers are just a subset of the Irish population and they can still carry on a lot of the customs and get an education as well. They should have to obey the law and go to school until a certain age like everyone else.
    How could you be racist though? Irish travellers are white-euro people

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    Quote Originally Posted by Antimage View Post
    How could you be racist though? Irish travellers are white-euro people
    Yes I know but believe me they use the racist card. They are discriminated against but a lot of it is their own doing. A significant proportion are involved in scams and they have a bad reputation. Not all of them are like that though and some Travellers are trying to improve their lot. The Travellers have also kept a lot of the old Irish music alive and are very knowledgeable about horses. Anyway they do give themselves a bad name and also Irish people in general.

    Anyway I try not to be too derogatory about anyone and I know the Travellers are not welcome by a lot of people but they have to recognise their part in that.

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    Last edited by ♥ Lily ♥; 07-21-2019 at 10:44 PM.

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    Last edited by ♥ Lily ♥; 07-21-2019 at 10:44 PM.

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    Gypsies/Travellers have their own gypsy customs, gypsy weddings, and gypsy culture.










    Last edited by ♥ Lily ♥; 07-21-2019 at 10:45 PM.

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