On Bridging The Gap

By Julie Jimenez, FINDink Contributor

Last year, the Filipino Cultural Association at Towson (FCAT) held a GBM that was solely dedicated to the cultural and generational gap between us, and our parents. This GBM was mostly discussion based and it was interesting to see the many differences between the general body members.

For instance, I talked about how my parents and I didn’t really have a strong relationship. It was difficult to talk to them about anything besides school because our values and our beliefs didn’t exactly line up. My parents would disagree and get into arguments with me, or they’d tell me to stop talking about it because it’s not something they agreed with.

If you somehow disagree, it shouldn’t be brought up again. You shouldn’t freely have an opinion about something even though you have a strong belief about it.

My parents are very traditionalist. Meanwhile, I feel like I’m more of the progressive type. So basically, you can see where the clashes are.

When I wanted to start dating my current boyfriend, my parents were very reluctant. In fact they told me “no boypren until after you graduate.” Verbatim.

I was 19. I was in college now, taking care of myself, being independent. Yet, my parents just wanted some type of way to hold me back.

And this was all because I’m the youngest child out of three.

Not to mention that I’m also a female.

So I still went out with him, I talked about him. There came a point where my parents stopped trying to prevent me from dating someone.

It’s because of this generational gap that my parents and I just have a hard time trying to connect or try to see each other’s perspectives because we’ve experienced so much that’s so different from each other.

Even though I know that my parents and I don’t exactly have the best relationship all the time, like some people I know, it’s always important to try and bridge that gap and reach out to them.

So occasionally, I’ll ask them how work is, how our dog at home is doing. I’ll try to find something I can talk about that isn’t related to my grades.

Lately, I’ve been a lot more open with them, and even though I know that this gap is not necessarily filled, I feel that our connection is a lot stronger than it used to be. 


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