Benjamin Kheng, a 32-year-old Singaporean musician, actor, presenter, writer, and former national swimmer, shared about his busy life as a man focused on his career. He also expressed how he is able to open up to others, especially after being married to Naomi Yeo, a Singaporean bilingual actress and host.
In an episode of R U Okay? with Jean Danker, Benjamin also expressed his grief when he lost his mother to breast cancer when he was just 12 years old. For him, his mother was his biggest force in his life back then. “I had a really healthy family dynamic and I was very grateful for that,” he said.
Losing his mom at a young age taught him not just the feeling of separation anxiety, but most especially the concept of grief and sadness. “It’s the worst, it’s awful,” said Benjamin.
Benjamin admitted that his parents would talk about love, and they were really empathetic in life. His mom was a stay-at-home parent who became deeply involved in his life, as well as his sister’s, Narelle Kheng.
This unfortunate experience of his mom’s death is something that the 32-year-old singer still learns to cope with today. “You think that over time you’ll get better and better… But then as you grow, you find more ways to live with it, sit with it like a friend, and then talk about it,” he says in relation to how he constantly copes with his situation.
It has been 20 years, yet Benjamin still remembers the dreadful day of his mom’s passing in every detail possible. He vividly remembers how he saw his mom struggling to breathe after he came home from school. He felt upset and realized that during those moments, he would lose his mom…
When he heard from his dad that their mom might be leaving them that day, he admitted that he first thought of what his teachers and friends in school would say when they found out that he was a kid with no mom. Little Benjamin was afraid to be the talk of the town during school assemblies.
It was only later that he realized it was a horrible thing to think about at that time.
This episode of R U Okay? is available on YouTube or meWATCH. Audio-podcast versions are also on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and meLISTEN.
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