Back again! And some musings on my family…

I am back from a 3-weeks holiday at my parents’ home.

I enjoyed my stay there though I was a little bit disappointed by the missing depth of my relationship with my parents. All our conversations were on a very superficial level. At least that is what I felt. I am not sure whether my parents would agree.

Why is that?

I think the underlying problem is a communication issue. There are too many areas in our lives we avoid talking about – like my faith, my parents’ relationship with my uncles and aunts, my sister’s career and her boyfriend. All these topics are dangerous in such a way that a wrong word could destroy my relationship with my parents. (This is real – we didn’t see nor talk with each other for nearly ten years.) My parents don’t feel the need to talk about the above mentioned topics. But I do.

I wish to honor my parents, but sometimes I am not sure about the right way to do it as an adult. I understand that to honor one’s parents is different as adult than it was as child. As adult we are not supposed to obey our parents. But we are still to demonstrate respect and value our parents’ opinion. I suppose that this includes to respectfully disagree with our parents’ opinion regarding certain subjects.

But how to respectfully disagree with parents who are literally unable to bear a differing opinion on the aforementioned subjects? How to respectfully disagree on these topics if that means to risk the relationship with the parents altogether?

In a kind of anticipatory obedience I avoid those subjects completely. In so doing I avoid conflict and a potential break-up. On the other hand a deeper relationship with my parents becomes impossible from the outset. I am not sure whether I honor my parents in this manner. I would rather say that this is not honoring at all.

Have you ever been in a situation like this? How did you handle it?

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