I did that first because many places I turn to, I hear this question. Just last week, I read a response to a reader’s question on a Facebook group and it was all about parental input to dreams and goals.
Apparently, this person is old enough, in fact, more than old enough to decide what he wants in life. He is old enough to make his own mistakes but his parents treat him like a dumb person, like one who doesn’t know for sure what he wants. They probably feel he isn’t old enough to pick the battles he wants to fight.
I am telling you that this happens every time. People are torn in between ‘honouring their parents’ and being happy. It’s a tough one to deal with especially if you are being emotionally blackmailed into doing their biddings. I would one day share my story of how I got into blogging against my parents’ wish after I studied Chemistry for years. The opposition was pretty much but the emotional support I got from boo at the time was more than enough to help me push on. My family is now solidly behind me.
Now, listen. This life is your life. The lives each of your family member is living is their own lives. When they are all grown up, very old and gone from this world, you will be left to deal with the consequences of the choices you picked when you were much younger. Truth is that, some of the decisions you should have taken earlier might either become totally impossible or extremely difficult.
Take your life and run it like you have to submit to only God. The only responsibility you have to your family members is to respect them and love them. You don’t have to be imprisoned. A time will come when they will praise you for standing your ground and becoming successful. I can assure you that that time will come, yes. What are you going to do before that time? Sulk, whine and complain about how they won’t allow you?
It’s very okay for them to feel disappointed that you are not respecting their wish. It’s okay for them to want to exercise the authority to shove things down your throat. Guess what? These do not matter at all. Feel bad all you want, temporarily and brace up. There is a life ahead of you and that life doesn’t submit to emotions and sentiments. It is shaped by your courage and resilience and drive.
Your family must never agree with your passions and goals. They must not always be on the same page as you. You can’t force everyone to be passionate about your dreams. In fact, if your dreams and goals are large enough, they would scare you. If they scare you, they would scare your family too. If they can’t manage the overwhelming fear, you can get over it to get to where you want to be.
While maintaining your stance, respect them. Never be tempted to exchange words. Guard the vision you have and work at it. Go the extra mile to become the adult. Invest in your mental and emotional life. Be prepared for what lies ahead of you. Family is going to be that person, the set of people that will go with you all the way. Don’t worry, your real family will join the train much later.
What if your family doesn’t support your goals and dreams? Pretend like that doesn’t matter one bit!