Kingdom of Knuffel

"Owing" your parents
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Author:  xBDMx [ Jul 23rd, '14, 04:27 ]
Post subject:  "Owing" your parents

I've always debated on whether I owe my parents anything or not. I mean, yeah, they put up with my bullshit for nineteen years, but they also chose to give birth to me, and they chose to keep me, and they chose to raise and take care of me. In return, I choose to respect them, and I choose to try and help them out when I can considering my family's disadvantages.
Unfortunately, I've lately wondered if I should be helping them out to the extent I have. I literally take care of them sometimes as a mother might for her children. One of my friends once told me that I didn't owe them that, and should have long since moved out and gotten on with my life.

Where is the line for "owing" your parents?
What do you define as proper help to give your family?
Do you sometimes think your parents ask too much of you? Or maybe even too little?

Author:  light_sucks [ Jul 23rd, '14, 06:17 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

I feel like people don't owe their parents anything unless the parents go out of their way to help them in adulthood.

I feel that taking the majority of my money from social security plus about 8 years of free child care means that I don't owe my family anything.

Author:  Agito [ Jul 27th, '14, 22:23 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

I personally think that we don't necessarily owe them; its more of a respect and appreciation that leads to your own giving back ?
I don't think its something that you must do; its something that you do if you feel like its deserving?

For example, most people dont like parents nosing into their business and I say that the excuse of that they are your parents isnt really valid. Not sure if that makes sense in the context of this argument though ><

But, if they need advice or help and you can find the time then you should? If it genuinely helps them ?

Not sure about this. I'm not old enough (not off to university yet) to really comment permanently on this matter.

Author:  Azmodel [ Jul 28th, '14, 12:39 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

My father can go *censured* himself before I help him. I owe him nothing. My mother it's more delicate but I've put up with enough to consider myself absolved of familial duty.

An exemple ? My birthday, this year. I refuded to take the trip to see them. (400km in 24 hours for information). What did my dad say? "It's your birthday, you could make an effort".

Author:  xBDMx [ Jul 28th, '14, 20:07 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

Uhg! I hate when people do that. It's gotten to the point where I don't want to do anything on my birthday. My mom is really bad about that. She always says stuff like "well, since it's your birthday, you have to spend it with us/friends/extended family that happens to be in town".

Author:  wolfcat87 [ Jul 29th, '14, 23:33 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

Whether or not you "owe" your parents depends on how good they were toward you while raising you. Did they do the bare minimum and consider you a success simply because you're alive at 18? You owe them little. where they horrible? They owe you. Were they going out of their way to not hurt you while they made your life great and help make you the best you could be? You owe them everything. Good parents won't be unreasonable in their requests for help form you and good kids won't deny their parents something reasonable.

Author:  xBDMx [ Jul 30th, '14, 00:26 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

I don't mind doing something reasonable for them. There were times when I did some outlandish things though. I almost had to go in to my little sister's Parent-Teacher Conference though, and that wasn't okay. I have spent years parenting my two younger siblings. I sat in with their counselors and offered advice on how to communicate with them. Like... HOLY CRAP I'M NOT THE PARENT HERE THEY ARE. They were awesome, they truly were, but what they request makes it so difficult for me to lead a life as an independent young adult.

Author:  mishamonkey [ Jul 30th, '14, 04:55 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

I think to some extent it really depends how much they need you, how they treat you (currently and in the past), and how much damage you're putting on your own life.

To some extent it's better to make the effort even if your parents drive you crazy...

Personally, I have amazing parents who do all sorts for me and my siblings... I don't always even do great at keeping up on chores and stuff around the house, but to be fair... I'm 18, still in university, and there's not much that I can help them with right now.

Author:  wolfcat87 [ Jul 30th, '14, 09:24 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

I don't think a parent teacher conference is exceedingly unreasonable. Especially if you've helped raise your siblings and/or know them well and get along with them. Wish I'd be in charge of those for my little brother. He might not have dropped out.

Author:  Telos [ Jul 30th, '14, 10:04 ]
Post subject:  Re: "Owing" your parents

I don't know if "owe" would be the word I'd use, since it sounds more like it should be considered a burden instead of something that you actually want to do. Not that we all want to run errands for parents or drive them around or whatever, but it's like others have said: It depends on your parents. If they were bad parents, you don't "owe" them anything; if they were good parents, there's nothing wrong with helping them out once you can. Only you can figure out what 'balances the scales.' My parents are far from perfect, but they did their best under hard circumstances and definitely went farther than they needed to. I'm talking stories-at-bedtime, driving-hours-every-day-for-extracurriculars, going-without-meals-so-I-could-eat far; under those circumstances, I don't feel obligated to pay them back, I want to help out wherever I can because I appreciate the sacrifices they made for me.

Some parental requests are more reasonable than others, and what is and isn't reasonable is up to the individual to decide, but I think there's nothing wrong with showing your appreciation for your parents in more practical ways than grade-school arts-and-crafts. Sometimes they can be frustrating to deal with, but hey, parents are people too, and it can be hard for them to stop seeing us as their kids instead of as adults. (All of this assumes, of course, that they were decent parents; abusive, absent, or otherwise toxic parents are a whole 'nother thing.)

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