When Should Parents Stop Making Decisions for Their Children?

First, a caveat: honoring your parents is paramount to success. Everything children achieve is because of their parents’ sacrifices and unconditional love.

However, the youth wants to build their own principles and more importantly, their identities. This may include matters that were taught as destructive by their parents, but were later in their lives proven to be upright. Some things that should have been avoided years ago could be the factors that help them mature today. As they say: change is the only constant thing in the world.

Hence, parents’ fears and frustrations should not be decision makers of their child’s preferences. I do not patronize disrespecting your parents’ decisions or anything, but a shift of paradigm would be nice, wherein each family is more open-minded and accepting of each other’s differences when it comes to beliefs and inclinations. What was once inculcated by tradition should not be a hurdle to acknowledge change, especially if does not harm anyone in any way.

Parents should always play a role in their children’s lives, but they should not dictate how their children run their lives as a whole. This includes which career path they should take, who they should spend the rest of their lives with, and more. A child is not meant to be a puppet of their parents’ bias. Instead, they should be guided according to their distinctive individualities.

It might be hard to adapt this kind of perspective, especially because of the ‘strong family ties’ found in the culture of us Filipinos. However, it must be done. Making personal but rational decisions does not lessen the love and respect you have for your parents, after all. In fact, in the grand scheme of things, they should be proud of their success for raising a child who has grown to become a sensible and independent human being.


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