The Reason You Should Disagree With Your Parents

When I was a small boy I didn’t like vegetables; they were multi-coloured, bland and good for me. Any English northern boy worth his salt wouldn’t touch such a thing. I wanted ‘yellow’ food – chips, deep fried chicken, pizza and more chips – with a side of chips. It is fair to say, my parents did not agree. Then there was the time my parents wanted to go to their Godson’s christening, but I wanted to stay at home and play video games. Once again, they disagreed*.

This is a common feature among households, parents just don’t seem to agree with their children. And equally, children don’t seem to agree with their parents.

Now this is for a very good reason. Your parents have lived 20 to 30 years longer than you. So even if they aren’t the best parents on earth, they know enough to know that a diet of chips and video games, does not a good healthy child make.

So yes, I concede, so far there have been no big revelations. Well done Mindfump, you have described the basic principles of child rearing, something which has been in place for hundreds of thousands of years.

What I found as I grow up however, was that I learned how to look after myself. I could choose the right food, the right moments to watch TV or when to play video games. I learned that I need to work to earn money, and to live. What then happened as I grew up was that I began to disagree with my parents about other things.

Politics, goals, ambitions, attitudes to life, and so on.

This is a major source of conflict – or was at least. I love my parents and they are genuinely decent people. But some of their views made it difficult to have full respect for them, as I couldn’t grasp the thought process behind them. I genuinely felt affected by this. As I somehow felt disloyal or unloving, feeling I should agree with them about the big issues in the world.

Then I realised – This should happen. I should be disagreeing.

It should be a worrying sign if we completely agree with our parents. It is no big deal, but all human progress depends on it. Change depends on it. There appears to be a limit to how much change one can undertaken, a limit to how much one can accept or comprehend. I haven’t done the research* but it appears by middle age, we are set. Our views are our views and we did all of our changing when we were young, and now it is time to stay the same.

That is it humanity, no more need for change!

When we reach middle age, we are comfortable, we have seen change, been part of change and we look back at all this change and think ‘oh, look at all that wonderful change’. Then our kids come along and want more change. The cheek of it – don’t they know how much we have changed already?

Well no we don’t. Children have a terrible understanding of the past, even the recent past. That is why children laugh at old jokes which have been around for decades. They just don’t know. Although on a side note, it is true that tennis players do wake up around ten-ish and Noah did in fact use flood lights on his boat.

OK, so we don’t have a great understanding of what has gone before.

That is also a good thing, because if we (the kids) did, we definitely probably wouldn’t want to change as much either.

But we must continue to change, to disagree and move forward. If I agreed with my grandfather I would still call black people by the N word. If I agreed with my grandmother, I wouldn’t be ‘sure’ about those gay people. If I agreed with my Dad I would dislike immigrants and if I agreed with my mum, I would like Eastenders – something which doesn’t bare thinking about.

So now I am much more comfortable when I disagree with my parents. Life has genuinely become easier with them, as I now understand their views won’t change dramatically. Therefore hours of debate and argument will be beneficial to no one. Plus I get to play Super Mario Kart whenever I want, without feeling bad.

Mindfump.

*That was as bad as my childhood got.

*But I will continue to speak confidently about the subject

 

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39 Comments

  1. Hmm… I want to agree so badly, it makes so much sense. But then Momma Hansen has to go and ruin the theory. She is a completely different person now than she was ten years ago. It’s possible she hasn’t changed, just gone crazy though…
    Also good news, both my parents views on homosexuality have changed drastically since two of their kids came out. I’m actually really proud of my dad, he rang them both up and apologised for not being more accepting initially (he’s completely out of touch with emotions and autistic, which makes it even more special)

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Ah that is actually warming to hear, I am glad some people are still changing later in life. Although the theory still stands because it was your parents who agree with your siblings not the other way around. If your siblings agreed with them the world wouldn’t of changed. I hope there are more parents like yours though, mine do not seem to be in that bracket.

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      1. Oh excellent, my parents can change and your theory still holds. To be fair to other parents, it took years for my parents to really come to terms with it. My mum used to be a pretty dedicated Christian but has turned her back on the church (for multiple reasons), she’s become a bit of a hippy these days. Ditching that judgmental church seems to have done her a lot of good though. I imagine it’s hard to follow a religion that tells you your children are going to burn in hell for all eternity…

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Wow, yeah that is a monumental change. Hats off to her. She definitely blows the theory that middle age/older people don’t change then. You should write about those changes though, I don’t think that is very common. I would definitely have a read (although to be fair I read everything you put out).

          Liked by 3 people

          1. She would certainly be an interesting topic of conversation. Better clear it all with her though, if she doesn’t want me to I can at least talk about how I gave up on conventional religion. Even if I didn’t become a hippy and change my whole outlook on life :p

            Liked by 2 people

  2. A fascinating read, Mindfump… I think I must be either a supreme egotist or a Peter Pannish man-child because my views on the world [socio-political, or otherwise] are pretty much the same now as they were when I was a kid. (Admittedly, after a lot of soul-searching and doubt in my teens/20s.]
    When it comes to parental views, I think I moved quickly from disagreeing with everything, then swiftly moving to indifference. Serene indifference, indeed… if I ever agreed with parental views on anything, it was pure coincidence(!)

    Hmm… and now I just probably sound conceited…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Can’t stop picturing you as Peter Pan now. I suppose ultimately though the general principle is that you should be more progressive than your parents. And then your kids will be more so and on it goes like that. Or maybe they will be more Peter Pan-ish. Which should be changed to Peter Panaché for no other reason than it makes me laugh.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Haha well I must admit to being a Peter Panaché of very small brain, my friend, as I actually get very confused with the whole conservative vs progressive thing every time I try yo wrap my head around it: I mean, you definitely said it right, as that’s the nature of evolution towards Utopia, but it’s also been my observation that, perhaps due to cyclical human nature, many children tend to be as prejudiced (sometimes bigoted, indeed) as their parents, but in different ways… but that’s my problem, and possibly a skewed perspective!
        Having said what I did about my own unchanging views, I think it’s safe to say that when anyone, no matter their age, thinks they know everything, they’ve essentially failed.
        Perhaps?
        #BuffyPhilosophyFail.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I am certain it is not a smooth progression to Utopia – you are right. It goes up and down over time. But considering where we came from – it must be the case that we get more progress/liberal as time goes on. Like if we agreed with our great-great-grandfathers we would all be loving slavery. But obviously that isnt the case. Nope, nope don’t think I am up there with the top philosophers either. As this post and comment proves. Always fun to try though and if in doubt, we’ve always got Peter Panaché.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Ah, now this reminds me of some of the “big” discussions we used to have at my gentleman’s club* over brandy. 😉
            Definitely good to try… and I’ve made a note to pick up on these thoughts for a ‘utopia’ post at some point (hopefully). Thankyou, Mindfump. 🙂

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