Social Question

Pandora's avatar

How do you judge your parents?

Asked by Pandora (30374points) July 7th, 2021
10 responses
“Great Question” (5points)

I find that our loved ones may be judged on a different scale and especially our parents, compared to the rest of the world and relationships. I have been harsh with my mother in my younger years and sometimes I may give her leeway where I would not have with other relatives and friends.

Sometimes you hear people talk about cutting off someone who thoughts and morals are not equal to your own. I have cut off people who repulse me. I’ve heard from people who do the same with their parents and it makes me wonder about how far would I go for the things I believe in. It’s easy with friends even siblings.

I believe parents and children are different, I feel. It’s easy for me to say I would cut them off but would I? I can say I would because there actually is no need for me to cut them off. We disagree on many things but not on our morals. For example, none of us are thieves or would hurt someone physically or emotionally, or financially for fun, or sell drugs or drive drunk or vote for the last guy in 2016.
So, what if I found out my mom killed someone years ago and got caught now. Or what if I found out she had cheated on my dad years ago and he died never knowing. Would I feel differently about my mom? Would I forget everything we’ve been through all my life and just cut her off?

I don’t know if that’s possible, at least for me.

So going back to my question. Would you cut them off or have you gone through it? What makes you believe you could carry through on it?

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Answers

kritiper's avatar

Dad never should have married Mom. She caught him on the rebound from a girl he really loved and he was having second thoughts about the marriage on the way out of the church. He may have loved his children but he was incapable of showing it.
Mom was a good Irish Catholic girl who wanted a big family. (She had eight kids!!) I think she didn’t realize how much work it was to raise so many kids and was too busy keeping house to give those children the love and attention they needed.

Yeahright's avatar

My parents are great. They have been very loving and supporting to this day— both financially and emotionally. I have no complaints whatsoever. I had a great childhood and even better teenage years.

If I found out my mom killed someone years ago and got caught now, I would want to know the circumstances, and if it was a horrific intentional murder, I think I could cut her off because I couldn’t deal with that.

If I found out she had cheated on my dad and he died never knowing, I would be deceived but would still love her because she is not only a mother, but also a woman with her own personal and psychological issues and she must’ve had a reason to do that.

Inspired_2write's avatar

Circumstances were far different in the era of my parents.

Women couldn’t get jobs but were conditioned to stay home and rear children and make their

husbands happy while the husband worked and went out with his buddies , came home put

his feet up and waited for his well cooked meal.

Such was the standards then.

Mother…innocent in the ways of the world and men .

Dad… Experienced bachelor with years and a string of women hanging on his sleeve.( highly probable)

Years later and five children and in the 1960’s/70“s when women were creating careers and

living on their own would probably create an envious mother of the freedom of her offspring

doing whatever they liked and dating whomever they wanted and having career choices that

enabled them to live or travel on their own.

I would surmise that she was angry, upset depressed of her upbringing and her married life .

My late father on the other hand resented having to be home after work, bringing home the

bacon so to speak and feeling like an unappreciated workhorse.

Result: Mother became sick, depressed, no finances as Dad had it all in his name at the Bank,( he held all the control and spent wildly).

While she had NO access. a slave growing older while dad socialized ( probably with women at company parties without mother) Feeling much like a single man again.

What to I feel about it…its a shame for the times but mother and dad NEVER communicated

with each other about there feelings and none of us adults children knew about it until it was

too late, with dad resorting to drink and mother ending up with hospitalization for mental

illness ( depression).

Its no wonder they ended up as they did.

I feel for them and wish that I knew what I know now then to be in a position to help instead

of judge.

Inside everyone one could find a hidden painful history that is not expressed nor addressed.

Compassion is what I feel and regrets for not observing more and doing something even just

saying I love and appreciate them would lift them up just a little , I think.

flutherother's avatar

I never judged my parents and if anything, I’m guilty of idealising them. Neither did anything very immoral and now they are both dead, neither of them will. I can’t reject them now, whatever they may have done in the past, as they are my parents and such morality as I have mostly came from them anyway.

canidmajor's avatar

I cut my mother off 6 years ago.

The difference in ideologies tends to go beyond simply having different morals and beliefs, at least in a parent child relationship, it will affect how the parent treats the child who believes differently. My mother is almost a cliché of the Entitled Privileged Bigoted White Woman, I carry some seriously opposing views from hers, and I behave in such a manner. I don’t vote as she does, I am friends with people of whom she doesn’t approve, I refuse to live in the neighborhoods and style which she thinks are appropriate.

I have been a major embarrassment to her pretty much my entire life, and she has never missed an opportunity to tell me so, in so many words.

I strongly feel that if she had been more open-minded she might have been willing to at least accept me.

And yes, @Pandora, it was extraordinarily difficult to walk away. After my Dad passed, the governor came off of my mother’s mouth and she was more vitriolic than ever (and it was no picnic while he was alive!) and it still took me nine years to walk away. I was 61.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I forgave my mom for her alcoholism and abuse but it took a long time. If she hadn’t quit drinking, I’m not sure we’d have a relationship.
But yes I judged her harshly for her choices for a long time until I saw that was unhealthy for me to harbor those feelings.

Forever_Free's avatar

It is not my place to judge them.
They did the best they could for all they knew and the actions and culture of their day.
I however made sure that I respectfully let them know where I stood on things and where we differed.
Open and honest Communication is key

Caravanfan's avatar

I wish my parents were still around. They were great.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

I wish mine were here too! @Caravanfan

My dad was great with all of us and and friends also the grand kids (he had me working on engine overhauls for our cars when I was three)
My mom “adopted” several of my younger brother’s and sister’s friends when they were tossed out of their houses.

They both started to teach me to cook when I was six or seven.

JLeslie's avatar

I don’t judge them. Sure they did some things that I think could have been done better, but no one is perfect.

I can’t imagine cutting them off for different ideologies. Maybe I’m not thinking that through well. If the ideologies always led to horrible interaction I guess I could see why people do it. I think about if I were the parent I don’t think I would ever cut off for that reason, and so then it becomes clear it is about my perspective as the child. I always try to keep that in mind when my parents are driving me crazy.

My sister cut off my dad. I feel it’s unfortunate, but it was just too difficult for her to interact with him. I do understand why it is hard for her, he can be upsetting and stressful, but also she perceives him inaccurately at times.

During covid I have tried to be more patient with my parents, tried to call them more. I “see” them in zoom discussion groups, which has been a nice perk and no stress. Trying to spend more time together that does not feel parent child, but rather simply more time together.

I think my parents are at their worst towards me when they are anxious for me. I try to keep that in mind too.

As far as siblings, I’m not in agreement with that being easier. Your siblings are the only other people in the entire world who know what it was like to be a child in your parents’ home. The experience siblings have is like no other, because they know how dysfunctional the household was. The longest relationship you have in your life is your siblings (barring anything unusual). Longer than with your parents, spouse, or children.

My relationship with my sister became difficult at one point because of her cut off with my dad and the dynamic that developed in the family. That strain with my sister was really difficult for me. I don’t blame her for all of it, I take some responsibility, but I just see it as really incredibly unfortunate. It’s a long story.

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