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Parents and Children | 父母与子女

My name is Lily, and I was raised in a very conservative family on the island of Fiji, in the South Pacific. At an early age we were taught close family ties and conservative ways. Family members worked together as one unit, and we respected our elders. Upon arriving in the United States, I discovered a very different world, where children speak as they wish to their parents and at times even treat them withdisrespect . This different world eventually led to some difficulties between me and my parents.

When I was eighteen, a couple of my friends moved out of their parents’ house and into an apartment of their own. They asked me to move in with them. These friends were born in the United States, and their upbringing was less conservative than mine. Their parents considered it perfectly acceptable for them to move out and live independently at eighteen. But when I spoke to my parents, it was clear they did not want me to leave home. My friends couldn’t understand this and they kept telling me to move out anyway. I felt caught between my friends and my parents. I felt that my friends were doing something that was socially acceptable and “in with the crowd” and that my parents were being old-fashioned and not behaving as Americans should behave.

For me, after many sleepless nights, my obligation as a daughter overcame my yearning for independence. I realized that my parents’ unwillingness for me to move out was because of their love for me. I also realized that if my friends were true friends they would accept my decision. I told them I’d decided to stay with my parents. Some of my friends and I grew apart from each other but most of my friends accepted my decision. They realized that it did not matter whether I lived with my parents, that what really mattered for our friendship was how I was with them. Now, looking back, I feel that an eighteen-year-old is still young enough to make many mistakes, and I feel lucky that I didn’t make a mistake.

 

 

 

我的名字叫莉莉,来自南太平洋上的斐济岛,从小在一个传统式家庭里长大。很小的时候父母便灌输给我紧密的家庭纽带观念和传统的生活方式。家庭成员要作为一个整体共同努力,我们要尊敬长辈。自从来到美国,我发现了一个截然不同的世界,这里的孩子随心所欲地对父母说出自己的想法,有时甚至对待父母不是很尊重。这个不同的世界最终导致我和父母之间出现了一些问题。

我十八岁那年,几个朋友从父母家里搬出来,住进了自己的公寓。他们想让我也一起去住。这些朋友都出生在美国,所受的教育不像我那样传统。他们的父母认为,到了十八岁自己出去独立生活是完全可以接受的。可当我和父母说了之后,很明显他们不愿意让我离开家。而朋友们对此并不理解,还继续催促我搬出去。我感觉自己被夹在了朋友和父母中间,觉得朋友的行为是为社会所接受的,是很合群的;而父母则太过老套,行为方式不够美国化。

经过许多个不眠之夜后,作为一个女儿的责任感压倒了对于独立的渴望。我明白父母不愿我走是源于他们对我的爱。而且如果我的朋友是真正的朋友,那他们就会接受我的决定。我告诉他们我要留下来和父母一起住。有的人和我疏远了,但大多数都接受了我的决定。他们知道对我们之间的友谊来说,是否和父母住在一起并不重要,重要的是我本人如何与他们相处。现在回过头来看,我感觉十八岁还是太年轻,容易犯许多错误。我很庆幸当时没有做错。

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