What happens when we find ourselves in a certain situation which is so new and so different to what we are used to, that we refuse to discuss about it or even considering its existence. If you adapt to a new situation or adapt yourself to it, you change in order to be able to deal with it successfully, especially by altering your ideas and habits.
What is traditional and standard does not necessarily mean that it can be applied in every situation or to every person. I often hear parents complaining about their children. They say that children of this generation do not behave properly and that they have no respect for their own parents. They say that they work really hard, providing so much but at the end their children are never satisfied and have a lot to complain about.
I think it is not only about children of these days. Children have always been difficult for parents to understand, ever since, so may be if we parents questioned ourselves more about how much pressure we unintentionally put on our children without realizing, it would be more helpful. There is always a reason behind a child’s improper and inadequate behavior at any age. Definitely they are too, unaware of how they are behaving. They just follow their instincts and react according to their moods.
Why they keep themselves always in their room, why they are always bitter about everything, why they are always on the edge, hard and aggressive when we try to talk to them and why they isolate themselves from the rest of the family. In most cases kids find it difficult to even communicate their thoughts with their parents. They have this idea that their parents would not comprehend them. Parents who are not being respected by their own children suffer a lot and continuously go on about how much they sacrifice for their children, without focusing on the problems that actually their children are facing and not those themselves.
Imagine how hard and frustrating it must be for children being ambivalent. They desperately and continuously look for love but at the same time refuse to show their parents their fragility and sensitivity. It must be very painful, for children, treating the most important people in their lives badly.
No matter how you look at it, you will realize that it is very complex. Complex because first of all there are those parents who see their children as children even at a mature age, not understanding that their kids have grown up and happen to have developed their own ideas and ways of doing things. Even if they do not agree with how their children lead their lives. They cannot have something negative to say about it whenever they are in their presence. It only ruins their relationship and draws their own kids away from them, due to interfering and not trusting their method.
We educate our children in the best possible way we know, we sacrifice a lot for them, show them the principles of life, protect them from what we believe is negative, discipline them and guide them making them ready for independency. Obviously these are only some of the things which we invest in our children. But by doing what we do for them, we automatically feel as if they owe us some sort of recognition and gratification or we have the right to be put at the top of their list or have them be our nurse when we grow old.
All of which could happen or not but there is no law that says it should. It is valuable for us parents if our children are thankful in general but our relationship with our children should not be based on this nor should we expect any sort of recognition from them. They learn about values as they grow up, through experiencing life themselves in their own way, which in some cases could actually be different to how we experienced life, which also does not mean it is the wrong way but just different.
We need to trust them more and show interest when it comes to giving them responsibilities or when they have the necessity to do something their own way. We must be calm in teaching them when they ask us how something is done and we have to show enthusiasm in what they do whether a sport, a hobby or a job. We oughtn’t to be negative or limiting them, just because we have already been down that road and know what the answer is. Everybody should have the right to experience for themselves and discover life in their own way.
Choosing to live their lives as independent children can only open up their eyes and understand how capable they are in achieving a goal. They are definitely going to suffer and feel threatened as children, not having everything provided and handed over to them at one point, but how can they appreciate anything if they never go out to work and provide for themselves.
Once they are given the theory, the guidelines, the explanation and the demonstration of how something is done then they are to put it into practice. They are to go out and see if they are able to confront themselves with others who are not necessary people that they are familiar with or whom they know. Wining their limits is mainly about doing things without the help of their parents. Overcoming certain obstacles is too about learning where they are more powerful and where less.
Sometimes we can see how, in a family with few children, each one is different to the other. Children during their childhood look upon their parents carefully, mirroring the parts which they relate to most and feel more comfortable with. Obviously they will not be the exact copy of their parents but will have picked up few characteristics which they enjoyed observing most. So let’s say in a family with six children, as in mine, we are all different to one another. We are all girls and went out to work at different ages in order to find independency. Some of us actually left England for America in order to find independency.
This is to say, let’s allow our children to discover their world and become who they really want to be, obviously guiding them and not destroying their identity and denying their originality. Children need to know we approve of their choices and their ideas. It makes them feel serene, confident and secure. Clearly not always we come across situations that we can easily approve of or easily allow our children to practice those choices. But we can listen to them and allow them the space and the freedom to explore. I have had students who had their son telling them that he was gay. Vice versa students who dread telling their parents they were gay.
I have had students whose daughter had become pregnant without being married, students whose son had lied about going to university and studying medicine until the day before his thesis, escaping not wanting to confront his parents and avoiding their reaction. I have had a student who had changed her religion and had to face her parents’ disapproval. Students who had decided to go and live away from home and their decision was strongly questioned.
What does all of this tell us? Well, first of all that not always we are fully prepared in life when we find ourselves in certain situations. We need to document ourselves more as parents and not to be so rigid and strict with our children. This would help our children to have a better relationship and a healthier dialogue with us, especially when it comes to discussing something serious and important. They should not be afraid to tell us about something that is upsetting and disturbing them. Especially when it is something that needs to be talked about and taken into consideration.
We parents should not be afraid of admitting that sometimes we are not informed enough about certain topics and that we too make mistakes and it would help if we allowed ourselves saying “sorry“ when necessary. It would also help if children were not so distant from their parents when they see them doubtful and concerned. Children too should be more elastic with their parents and not always use aggressiveness as a form of communication. They cannot expect their parents to know everything or to know how to behave in every situation, especially if it is something new to them.
Children must be in a relationship with their parents despite of their differences. Children must not cut their parents, sisters or brothers out of their lives just because they have a different opinion about their style of life or choices. It is always important to be in a relationship rather than not being in one at all. If we do not try our best to establish a harmonious relationship with our family, in that case any other relationship is really pointless because we cannot erase our roots. We are our roots; we should have the capacity to have contact with our past, parents and whom we are today.
Being a parent is not easy, but at least we can read and inform ourselves about it as to become a more understanding and comforting parent and not someone whom our children would run away from and cut every communication with us. This should never happen because we would be as parents and they would be as children losers.
We parents and children can all be less offensive, aggressive and insulting towards each other but learn to adapt to changes and differences, being there for one another, not getting offended at whatever or how parents express themselves to us,using communication as a form of progress, leaving pride aside and allowing more humbleness.
Breaking a wall in order to see what there is on the other side of it is always better than having to see a solid one that limits our visibility.
My name is SUSSAN and I am a Professor and Translator in English and Farsi (Iranian). I grew up and completed my studies in Cambridge, England. I have been teaching English since 1983. During all these years I have come across so many different people of all ages, wanting or needing to study English for various reasons. Either to pass an examination in IELTS, Proficiency, Toefl, First Certificate, Trinity, Ket, Pet or planning to go on a trip abroad or simply wanting to get a good result at school or university. Per saperne di più (clicca qui)