I don’t think I respect the people I am closely related to as much as I do less closely related people such as friends. Closely related people are my own family; my parents and brother. Often, I don’t pay a lot of attention to my own family.
I am a person who is nice person to friends and others, but not nice person to my family at home. I feel comfortable with my family members, so my attitude gets out of control when I am with them. I will be meaner to my parents than to my friends in the same situation. I am still doing the same thing every time my parents ask me to do a favor. For example, I am in charge of making phone calls when there is something wrong on a billing statement or when we need to make complain. I get into fights with my parents when they ask me to be their translator. I know it is my responsibility, because my parents did not get educated here in United States of America, but I am. Therefore, they think I will be little better at speaking.
Every time, I get into an argument with my parents, because I do not want to carry out their demands. However, things will be different if my friends, or someone other than my family member who does not speak as much English as I do, asks me to do the same thing. I will execute their demands right away without getting into fight or argument. Even though I really do not feel like doing it, I will not say anything.
There was one time when my family and I needed to look for new apartment and I was the one who made all the calls from newspapers and searched for new apartment. I did it because there was no way of escaping from it and I got all upset and frustrated afterward. However, when one of my friends, who just got here couple of months ago from Korea, needed my help to look for new house, I was not mad or frustrated at her. Now I am wondering why I would be so polite and nice to friends but mean to my own family.
My guess is, there is no gap between my parents and I, so I know they will not misjudge me from my attitudes. I also know they are still my family no matter what and they will not break the bond between us. It is not the same with friends. I cannot say no if the demand is simple and easy for me but it is difficult for them. I might make them feel that I am ignoring them or putting them down. Moreover, I will need help from friends sometime in the future, and I will be able to ask them because I have helped them before. I do not need to provide my help in order to get help from my family, because I know they will help me whenever, and whatever I need help with.
Therefore, I believe my family provides me with the most comfortable places but often I do not realize it.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.