NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Opinion

October 1, 2013

How much are we like our parents?

On Aug. 21, Channel 4 had a news item about the theory that children instinctively take on traits of their parents. I got a kick out of the responses that people made and the senses of humor in their emails to the station when they answered back. It showed that the majority tend to be in their 30s when it dawns on them that they, indeed, are doing things that their parents did, about the age of 30.

I, myself, as a child retorted to my parents that I would never yell or get angry at my own child later on in life or that I would ever criticize anyone on their behavior. Of course, I never had any children, but dealt with many nieces and nephews, great nieces and nephews and siblings. Many of the adults who answered this survey, who were parents, said they had to eat “crow“ because they are now doing the same thing that they said they would never do!

When I look at myself now, I find myself handling my different situations the same way my mother and father did. I always felt, in my heart, that they were doing the best they could for me. However, it didn’t mean that I didn’t express my opinion. I have never been accused of not doing that! Most of my friends will tell you that I’m very outspoken.

When I talk to my friends who had children, I find that they did the very same things that their parents did when they were growing up, so I am not alone. One of my examples of repeating my mother and father’s advice and not adhering to it was when I tried skydiving. I was fairly young, but decided not to let them know that I was doing it, but somehow they found out. I probably blurted it out at some point and they were not too happy. Not because I did it but because of the danger involved. My answer was, what danger! Then I proceeded to tell them that it was my choice and I needed to try the various things in life to see if I could do them.

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