I have something I’d like to share. I had been dating this girl (Minnesodad says: we’ll call her Lisa because without a name this would be confusing) for two months before she decided to meet my parents. Now, let me back up a step further. I am, what people have stereotyped as a hipster. I wear skinny jeans, cardigans, rebel against commercialism, and I ride a bike 350 days out of the year. I live in a tiny “art loft”, don’t own a TV, and I eat mainly vegetarian food (but I can’t give up bacon). Lisa is the same way. We’re happy hispters.
Anyway, I took her to meet my parents and everything fell apart. You see, my parents are the exact opposite of me. They are both very well off, they have the latest and greatest of everything, are staunch Republicans, and don’t approve of my lifestyle at all. They’ve always tried to do things like pay for things for me (I let them buy my MacBook instead), buy me a house when I graduated college, and so-on, but I have always wanted to life my life for myself and not take things from them since it goes against my principles. I still, however, love them. After all, they ARE my parents.
So upon pulling up to the house in the car we rented, Lisa lets out a loud sigh. I can tell she’s not approving of the large suburban house in front of her, so I lean over and say, “My parents live a different life than I do, but it’s still important for me to introduce you guys.” She nods approval and we go to the door. I was always taught to ring the doorbell when visiting, even though I grew up in that house, so I reached for the doorbell when Lisa said, “You can’t even walk into your own house?” I explained things to her as my mom opened the door with a smile.
My parents were incredibly hospitable. We had some cocktails, a really nice dinner that they’d even gone through the trouble of making sure was vegetarian, and they tried to make conversation as best they could, but Lisa had this depressing smirk on her face and came off as very cold and uninterested. Every question they asked her was met with a sigh and a long pause before she would talk.
After a few hours, we left and as we got into the car, she exploded. She went off about how my parents were “rich bastards” just “flaunting their greed” and how it made her skin crawl just to be around them. She said if they were so rich, they should be handing out money to people like us to make our lives better. I defended them and added that if I wanted their money, I could have taken it at any time, but I feel my generation is too much of the “do it for me” type and I wanted to make my own path in life. She disagreed.
We’re not together anymore. My friends sided with me, her friends sided with her. My parents felt bad that it went down the way that it did, but I also felt bad that they were treated that way by someone I also cared about. I guess the lesson learned was that sometimes people don’t see eye to eye and there’s nothing that can be done to change it. I’ve since moved on and am still forging my own path, and new love.
No advice needed here Minnesodad. Just wanted to share a story.
I am glad you took the time to write in to me. I am sorry your relationship ended, but I am glad you were able to move
on. I think the younger generations have suffered with the “do it for me” mentality and, hipster or not, they need a wake up call.
Rich, poor, healthy, sick..whatever your situation, it’s okay to get help (monetary or otherwise) when you need it, but help shouldn’t ever be a permanent thing. It’s strictly situational. When you’re able to stand back up on your own two feet, you need to think and act for yourself and stop relying on other people to live your life for you. Help is help, but no one should have to fund someone else’s life. Yet, we all take advantage of some of the situations we’re given. It could be unnecessarily taking money from loved ones, abusing a welfare system, making bad business deals, taking advantage of a spouse, or even cheating people of their health. If everyone would just stop taking advantage of each other, we’d all be in a better position. It’s time we all put on our big person shoes and get to work forging our own path in life.
Now, about those skinny jeans…