Parents & children

Although we sometimes disagree with the way our parents parent us, it’s not something we can later change for ourselves, but something we can change for our children.

As a parent now, it’s easy to see why my father chose not to encourage me to aspire or do anything with my life. His culture dictated it and it was easier that way. It is also easy to see why he had no real concerns about my welfare, because he knew the life I was living was the life he wanted me to live.

That changes of course for the parent whose children are encouraged to make decisions about leaving home and relocate. The feeling is different again, when children go off to university, because they’re only there for a finite time and will come back home when they’re finished, either because they can’t afford to move out, or because they’re offered a job nearer home.

For those of us whose children do decide to move out permanently or relocate to another city, it’s something their parents have to come to terms with and that’s when it becomes a whole new ball game.


12 Jan, 2014

8 thoughts on “Parents & children

  1. I received minimal to no encouragement about what to do with my life from my parents until I graduated from nursing school and my father voiced his concern about the nursing field, that nursing may not be what I should do. He asked if I was sure I wanted to be a nurse.

    I lived with my parents until I was married and didn’t go away to college. I stayed at home and went to the local college. I encouraged my children when it was time for college. One graduated with a BS degree in music and the other didn’t finish college. Both of them have moved away though.

    I agree with you. We should guide our children in the way to go. It’s up to them to take the advice or not. Not encouraging them leads to feelings of being overlooked.

    I think my parents didn’t think I was capable of having a life due to my diabetes and the information they were given by the doctors. I was kept on a tight reign and even had a curfew until I got married!

    I wasn’t suppose to have a normal life or live long enough to. We should encourage our children regardless of the circumstances.

    1. Thanks Lisa. Yes you’re right, all children should be encouraged.

      Parents’ will always have to deal with the fact that their children may move away permanently and that is what my father struggled with. That, his own insecurities and his cultural beliefs.

      Apart from the fact that your parents weren’t sure about your health Lisa, this could hold some truth for you too. It’s much easier for parents when their children live in the same home town, than it is for parents whose children decide to relocate.

      Although it’s not always our intention to control our children, it’s harder to work on their welfare when they don’t live in the same time. To some extent we have to rely on them making good choices so that they stay healthy and well.

      I’m pleased Lisa you took a stance for your own children, even though your life hasn’t worked out how you exactly planned it.

  2. I can’t imagine our 17 year old daughter with CP living on her own and yet, every time I give her a little freedom (paired with instruction), she does amazing things I thought she’d never do.

    Thanks for the reminder to think big and never assume we’ll be retiring for three.

    1. Welcome to the site Kerith.

      It’s easy to under estimate, not on a conscious level, our children and their capabilities, even more so when they deal with something like CP. We tend to want to tread with caution and wrap our children up in cotton wool; but as you have seen with your own daughter, even with what she deals with, she’s more than capable.

      I look forward to seeing you on the site again.

  3. I can understand how in my culture the children stay in the nest and close to home.

    My Mom is a progressive thinker and armed us with things we will need to survive in the future. Funny thing is she never received these tools from her parents as back in her time a woman just stayed at home until she was married.

    My uncles on the other hand went off to college, moved away from home and led good lives. Not that the women in the family did not lead good lives, it’s just that they weren’t encouraged to be independent and driven people.

    I’m so glad Mom thought differently for her kids. We really appreciate it and although my sister still lives at home (she has developmental problems) she leads a pretty average life where she works and comes home to Mom.

    1. Your background sounds like mine Maria. Ditto! What a beautiful inspirational story about your mum, your lives and your sister’s life. Even with developmental problems, your mum has shown through your sister that children can still feel and become independent in ways that suit their abilities.

      I would love to have met your mum Maria. She sounds like a truly inspirational woman.

  4. I think I’d like to meet Maria’s mum too!

    The best thing mine did for me was to leave me to my own devices. I got very little input, good or bad growing up, so if I’m screwed up it’s all my own doing!

    1. It’s easy to see why you would think like that, but at the time you will have made your decisions, they will have been the right decisions for you.

      It’s only when we look back that we begin to question our decisions then become a little disgruntled and annoyed with ourselves that we didn’t think to make different decisions that could have brought us a different outcome.

      Although there is some merit in that thought, it’s certainly not helpful. I think we should work on the assumption that back then we were different people, therefore the decisions we made then; were the decisions that fitted in for who we were at that time.

      We shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves, but should try to be more accepting of where we are now, change what we can and go with the flow on the things we’ve left behind.

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