Saturday, July 28, 2012

Why I am put off parenting

FOUR years ago I was sitting in a similar space, in fact, the space exactly downstairs from where I am right now, fiercely fighting for a happy life. It was a difficult battle. I was coming out of a rocky relationship, wrapped up a doctorate and was back to living with my family. The last bit turned out to be the hardest one of all.

It was not so much that I was taking a step back by moving back home, it was more like living with their expectations of me. It was (and still is) a lot of expectations. They expected me to dance to their rhythm without exactly telling me how to dance to that rhythm. Prior to that I have been dancing my own dance in my own life and had not involved them in much of it, so you get the idea.

That arrangement, thankfully, did not last very long. I got over the relationship, embraced change, and got back to dancing my own steps, with my own rhythm.

That said, it was a difficult time of my life.

The hardest bit of it was the fact that I had to hide it from my own family - because I tried telling them once and instead of getting a compassionate ear, I got laughter and ridicule. It sucks being the youngest kid in the family. I blame my parents because they think if it works for one kid, it should work for the other. Needless to say, they are not big on the idea of individuality. Then again, we are Asian, so that probably explains the attitude, or at least partially.

My parents would be the first people in this planet who kicked and screamed every time I told them that their parenting style is full-on Asian, although not so much tiger, parenting. They are able to successfully use guilt to get everything that they want. This puts me off having children, which when I told them about, they conveniently blame on the fact that I was a sub-standard human being to start off with, to which the solution is to get over it and get better.

They are so lucky I do not turn out to be drug-addict junkie who is slowly fading away in a dark alley somewhere.

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