Long-Earned Respect for My Parents

Rachel - Fairport, New York
Entered on April 7, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family

Almost too often, all I hear is, “my parents are so mean,” or, “Mom, you’re so stupid.” Eventually, these words start to bother me. My parents anger me, and sometimes I think them stupid—but then I try to remember my parents the way I know them.

Of course, there are plenty of exceptions to my rules—but before judging your own, look at your parents the way I do mine. My dad grew up in the country. My mom was raised in suburbia in a very Italian family.

But it isn’t just their stories of childhood that earn my respect. My mom wasn’t supposed to be able to have children after my sister. Seven years later, I came into their lives. After my brother and sister being all grown up and on their own, my parents are still hanging in there to raise me.

My parents gave me everything. Life, food, home…They make all my important and hard decisions for me. I have a say, but they make the final word and they follow through on it, not me. But they won’t always be there to make those decisions for me, or even to give me shelter. They have been through so much, and they still have smiles on their faces and the look of love in their eyes. They have long-earned my respect.

I don’t know how I came to this realization—I thought it was just maturity. Perhaps my mom teaching me how to act my age plus my mingling with those who are not being taught that way formed this part of me.

I don’t expect anyone to have the same story as mine, but every family is different with their own miracle stories and stories of perseverance, etc. Just remember, for most women, being pregnant is the happiest time of their lives. And mothers and fathers usually always just want the best for their children. Better than what they might have had. They went through life and made their own judgments, and raise their children the way they think is absolutely best. Most parents just care, and love, and want you to be the best you can be.