Leaving Words

Informant: Bahala Ka

(Bah-ha-la Ka)

(Be careful, you’re dumb)

The informant learned this phrase from her Filipino relatives.

It is said every time a younger person leaves to do an activity, for example, go to the beach with friends or ride a bike to a destination. The informant explains that it was never said with malice or judgment but was a warning to stay safe.

The informant never found it offensive because the concept that kids are better than their parents was never culturally appropriate in her Filipino upbringing.

It seems as if the saying was less an intended comment on the person’s intelligence and more of a comment on how things can go wrong or  on how bad things happen. It’s used a warning to be mindful and be safe. It was said with love by a person who was concerned.