I’ve heard people say so often how they feel like the biggest problem in our generation is the idea that we seem to always know what’s best for us and can go after it.
Looking at that first, it seems like a really good thing, but I think what the older generation struggle to understand with it, particularly people of African/Asian descent, is that they believe more in learning from the experiences of others and not merely trial and error which is quite costly while we just wanna take the plunge from our own intuition and see where it leads us. So you can imagine your parents frustration when they are pointing you in a direction but because you’re so convinced of the opposite direction, you take permission from them to violate their intuition and go with your own intuition.
Sometimes, we do get to certain places and realise “oh, they were right”, and other times, we get there and get to say “I told you so” back to them. May the odds forever be in your favour with regards the reply you give in life.
I had a conversation with a friend recently and she was about to do something quite big in her life and while speaking to me about it, she said ‘I don’t want my family to know’. This was not the point of the conversation but my ears picked up on it so when she gave me room to speak, that was the first question I was throwing back. “Why don’t you want your family to know?”
She started by saying how they know how independent she is about her life and how she doubts any of them would really be fazed about it and despite my push to inform them, she was bent on not doing so, but on the bright side, she hadn’t kept it from the entire world, at least I knew what was going on. (Don’t worry, it does not implicate me so we’re good, lol).
In convincing her to tell her family, I realised a gap she had made in her understanding of what independence and accountability is, and I said to her that “Accountability to the people who love us does not, in any way infringe on our desire to be independent“, and I’ll explain that some more.
Even when were grown and true-true, we know whats best for us, our parents and all our loved ones still love us the way they did when we were little, their love for us doesn’t change much because we now have horns and tails lol, although, there are family ties that are seared because of decisions taken by younger people.
But in this case, it was purely a picture of ‘I’ve been independent, I don’t want to bother them with this’.
So I asked her a question, I said, “would anyone in your family be hurt or offended if they found out after it was done?” and she responded in the affirmative and I shared with her how its now not just about her but them as well, if it impacts them in some way and also how it now transcends her independence and now sits on her accountability to her family by mere fact of the emotional bond shared. But being strong-willed and a true candidate of this generation, she still refuted the stance I had made.
I’ll probably still have a go at convincing her, but I need us young people to realise that accountability does not stop us from being independent and its totally fine to involve the people you should be accountable to even while making your independent moves. I’m hopeful that when we sit in the shoes of our parents one day, we’ll see more clearly all they saw and tried to protect us from, but then, it’ll now be our turn to sit back and allow the ones who ‘know’ do and learn from their mistakes. A cycle that might never end!
Lets be the strong accountable, independent generation.