Tag Archives: parents

On relationships with parents

Being a parent your perspective shifts on any number of fronts. One I was giving idle thought to  the other day is commonality with parents. As a kid, you’re totally dependent on them and look to them to supply entertainment and interest. The things you are both interested in and talked about overlap enormously.

At some stage, usually around the teenage years (maybe sooner now thanks to the Internets), kids have the temerity to start to be passionate about things their parents have no hope of keeping up with – for me it was rock music, Transforming robots and technology – and your interests move apart. I distinctly remember a conversation where I tried to engage my parents in a discussion about what some Weezer lyrics meant and was surprised at the time at their inability to engage with me on this front… in retrospect, what was I thinking??

Then at some stage a bit beyond that – you have kids yourself and suddenly the common interests you have with your parents ramp up again. You’re both interested in child development, nursery rhymes, infant healthcare, and crucially – the kids in question.

Just an idle thought… one that will hopefully give me perspective when Emily starts to talk to me about things I don’t understand at all in a few years time…


At some point, growing up, you turn against your parents in a small way. Or at least, I did — it felt occasionally a duty rather than a pleasure to see and hang out with them and a distraction from the every day business of going out with friends and generally tearing up the world.

Maybe I’ve matured, or its the stabilising influence and general inspiration of going out with Amanda, but over the last few weeks with my folks visiting, it’s just been amazing to hang out with them. My folks are talented, funny, interesting and brilliant (what else, I guess, would you expect when their progeny includes, well, me), and I’m pleased to have reached a point where I can enjoy and appreciate them as people, not just as their son. Of course, they’re not without their limitations but everyone is, and there genuinely feels to have been a change in me that I am more able to accept them (and others) as they are.

My Dad used to talk a lot about shifting your perspective when I was younger. Speccifically in the context of wasted food much of the time, or in addressing complaints that I was ‘starving’ (“Think of the children in Africa… are you really starving?”) — but something seems to have shifted recently. And it feels good.