Saturday, January 22, 2011

parents vs children — is there a way out?

This is neither a pro parents nor anti children post but the issue raised has been in existence since generations. Like the famous war between mother in law and the daughter in law, the differences between the parents and children are there to stay.

Came to know about a real life Baagban/Avataar story

This is not a stray example of life of a senior citizen but these sorts of examples have become part and parcel of our life.

In This particular case ( many senior citizens will identify with this)— retired father in law, sick mother in law , daughter in laws wants in laws to live separately, sons have already got all the property transferred in their name, and parents complaint “ our children are very rude to us, don’t talk to us, treat us useless liability”

—- so what should the parents do?

Harsh realities like this should be taken as lesson for every one. be it the old parents or the young parents, the present day young generation who are the culprits and also the children of the present day young generation.

I am not casting value judgment on anyone’s behaviour or attitude but just sharing some of my doubts and confusions which are baffling me:

  1. Do the parents give birth to children because they want old age security or whether they want to satisfy their maternal/paternal instincts? ( This reminds me of one dialogue from a movie in which the son says” I didn’t ask you to give me birth, you wanted to satisfy your sexual as well as parental desires, why expect something in return from me, I didn’t ask you to give me a better future, and sacrifice your life. this was your decision, why expect any thing in return from me?”
  2. Should the parents expect any thing from the children? Do they love and slog to give a better future to their children with the expectation that the children will repay them in their old age? Do they treat their children as investment which will reap returns in their old age?
  3. Parents go to any extreme to take care of children, they sacrifice their comforts, sleep, their life, even their young age to give a better future to children and what do they get in return – the 3 I’s – insults, isolation, and insecurities?(Link)
  4. The children these days are very quick in making their parents aware of their responsibilities but what about the duties of the children? Are the children so selfish that they don’t realize the sacrifices made by the parents for them, or their responsibility towards the ones who gave them a comfortable future? Have the breed of children become selfish and materialistic.
  5. Won’t the present day children become tomorrow’s old parents? Won’t their children learn from their behaviour?
  6. Should the parents become selfish and think about their life only?
  7. Why should the parent save money for the future if it doesn’t give them comfort in their later life?
  8. Won’t it be better if the parents don’t give away their life savings to the children in sudden fit of love for them? Rather they should keep everything with them (be it cash/property/ bank deposits/ shares etc) till their end , such arrangements should be made that in event of death of one of the parent the survival still retains the control over the finances till his/her end thus one of the partner is not left at the mercy of any one and continues maintaining his/her financial independence.
  9. Will it create a more harmonious relation between the parents and children if they live separately thus no interference from any quarter in each other’s life? Each to his own?
  10. Should the senior citizen shift to localities where they have like minded and same age people as their companions ( I don’t mean old age home but a society where the same age people are there to give each other company and take care of each other)(link)
  11. the elderly group should keep themselves occupied in some constructive work so as to maintain their dignity, self esteem and self respect

Can any one suggest any way out of this conflict ?

Can something be done to maintain the love, affection and caring between the parents and children/

Is there a way by which dignity, respect, independence of both the parties is maintained?


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