Trevor’s Debt

Trevor’s Debt

Every time Trevor speaks with his parents on the phone, I hold my breath so that I don’t catch the palpable tension in the air. He says he feels a twinge in his heart during those conversations, but from the look on his face, I think it’s more like a gun drill working its way through. Some debts are seemingly so big, that they’re no longer payable, and if your creditors continuously hold it over your head, then you’re as screwed as a nut. This is why parents are reigning champions in the game of emotional blackmail.

Parenthood is as good as it is maddening. It is so indulgent that at some point during the journey, parents forget that their children aren’t really theirs. It is that misplaced sense of ownership that inspires the planning, direction and control of the child’s life, and more often than not, they do not know when to step down from the managerial position. Usually when their growing child realizes that they deserve a seat at the table that governs their life, the battle for supremacy begins.

In the game of thrones that ensues, there are almost no rules. The card of speeches and manipulation is played by the parents, and if those fail to work, force is employed. The child often does not have a lot of cards, and would play the good old show of rebellion, which doesn’t work as much as it should. Being the veteran players, the parents do not play all their cards during that intermediate stage; they save the blackmail card of “after everything I’ve done for you” for when their offspring attains some form of maturity. That trick is old and dirty, but it works; so they get to pick what college will be attended, what course would be majored in, what GPA should be worked for, what firm should be considered for a career, the kind of family your partner should come from, when they want their grandkids. I could go on, but the sun is coming up, and I gotta go to work.

Admittedly, some parents do everything for their children, but their motive has to be brought under a microscope. Are these deeds birthed from love? Could it be the sense of responsibility? Are they making an investment which they hope to reap from? Maybe it’s a combination of all three, and as funny as it may sound, you’ll see that it is unhealthy when you really think about it. If a parent’s motive for parenting is love and responsibility, then why do they go out of their way to make the child feel like they’re forever indebted to them for doing their job? Why do parents have to make the child feel like an investment that didn’t yield profit if they don’t grow up in accordance with their wishes? Why does Trevor pretend to be someone he’s not, because he doesn’t want to let his parents down? Why do his parents remind him at every chance they get that they gave up their dreams so that he could pursue the dreams they crafted for him? Why is he living his parents’ lives instead of his?

Maybe we are supposed to have a certain obligation to our parents in our adulthood, and maybe we owe them for doing the job of parenting. If you say we do, how much do we really owe? Is it payable? Should they want payment for doing the job of parenting?

Written by Lucent Britex

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  1. Slut
    February 20, 08:45 Reply

    I honestly would never be able to understand parents. My mom was ready to rip the world in the half and find money, if I could be an engineer for her. I changed that and she withdrew support from me. In the end, I just feel they see us as investment opportunities. They always come for pay day in the future. It’s really sad.

    • IBK
      February 20, 12:12 Reply

      This right here. Glad to know I’m not the only one who experienced this.

  2. McDuke
    February 20, 09:51 Reply

    Welcome to my world…this right here can mess up your mental and emotional well being in ways you can’t even begin to imagine yet you can’t love them less…

  3. Black Dynasty
    February 20, 19:12 Reply

    My mum was like this but i refused to accept or bow down which resulted in intense disagreements and not talking for weeks at a time. These disagreements lasted from maybe 14 till my mid 20’s.
    My dad largely stayed out of our “battles” but was always supportive of chasing dreams and living life on our terms etc

    My favourite response to “after all we have done and sacrificed for you”, was…. “I love you but i cannot live my life for you, as you are not God. Honouring you does not mean i have to do everything you say, especially when i don’t believe it is right for me”. This was said with a straight face.

    As adults you need to make them to realise that they are no longer managers but consultants and consultants cannot make you do what does not work for you. Sometimes this realisation has to be forced and they will throw all the manipulative tricks in the book but alas, you have to stand your ground.

    My siblings now enjoy the benefit of said hard won freedoms.

  4. Denzy
    February 21, 07:12 Reply

    Some parents could be overbearing and sometimes step overboard, but I think it’s born from the innate desire to protect and see the child succeed; which is every good parent’s dream.

    In the end, whether you towed their path or carved out your own route; just be successful and they may come around.

    • Ken
      February 21, 10:14 Reply

      I totally agree

      It’s easy to criticize parents, until u become one and realise how insanely difficult the never ending assignment of parenting is. For those who have broken away from their parents based of differences, I want to encourage y’all to never give up reaching out. Don’t stop talking to them. In the end we are all humans and nobody is perfect.

      Well that’s for loving parents o. If your parents are monsters, as in true monsters, pls run! Run far!! Lol

  5. Saucebutton
    February 21, 11:42 Reply

    Always fighting battles between what is right for me and what my parents really want. A friend tagged me “selfish” for picking myself over my loved ones. The tagging confused me because most of my teenage to adulthood I have always wanted to please my parents, seeing that it wasn’t working I decided to choose me and let every other thing fall into place.

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