June 12, 2018 at 2:15 am #212127
I am a 22 year old female. I am Asian and have been living in the same house for most of my life. I have been attending school in the area from elementary up until now, university nearby as well. My parents have always been strict on me my whole life. I have always restrictions throughout my life. I wasn’t allowed to go out growing up. I wasn’t allowed to do sleepovers or hang out with friends at night. I always had to request special permission. My parents have only trusted one person, my best friend, my whole life and they don’t let me hang out with anyone else, because they don’t know them. Due to the restrictions, I grew up as a “shut-in” and felt extremely isolated from the world. It was tough growing up and having expectations, to be smart and get into a good college. I ended up rebelling by doing drugs and hanging out with bad people. It was a phase that I tried but it didn’t stick. I believe I would have been an extrovert, but I am incredibly introverted now. This was my situation growing up, in adolescent years.
Fast forward to now, I am a junior in college, possibly graduating in a year but very behind from everyone who I graduated high school. I went to a community college and changed my major halfway through, so I ended up falling behind and now I won’t graduate for a while. Since I changed my major, I don’t have much support. My family believes I should be studying something more useful such as computer science or engineering or pharmacy.
Aside from school, I have been part-time jobs since I was 15 years old. I always thought working was my key to freedom, and financially it was. My parents controlled my money at first and did not allow me to use any of it. They didn’t think I could manage my own funds. Eventually when I gained control of my own account, I ended up blowing all my money because I never how to learn how to use it with moderation. I went out of control. But I never stopped working, and I have had part-time jobs ever since in restaurants, retail, and tutoring, and whatever else I could find. My parents were unsupportive of me working. I used to work jobs where I could walk to, but eventually…those jobs paid so little, like minimum wage. I started working a little farther away, and I pay $200 a month for Uber and other transportation services. My parents refuse to co-sign so that I can finance a car. What bugs me the most is that they bought a new car… and decided that I can only use it to go to and from school. That’s it.
This is a big problem in my life because it has prevented me from doing things that can have helped me with something I struggle with, which is depression. I feel like alone most of the time, and that my life has no meaning. I often feel like I can’t make connections with anyone. All of my friends have gone off to college in universities far from home and made their own friends and started their lives, and I am truly happy for them. Although, I have stuck in the same area and unable to break out of my current situation. I can’t do things like, go to the grocery store to buy food and cook my own meals, I can’t go on walks or go for a drive, I can’t even go to the gym. I also hate my body, and wish I could do things to live and be healthier.
During the school semester, I would create a fake schedule so that I could use my car for longer. I really hate to lie and be deceitful, but my parents leave me no choice. I cannot tell them that I simply would like to hang out with friends or even go buy some things at the Dollar Store. Whatever it is, they usually say no. They won’t let me go anywhere unless it’s school related.
I am currently broke due to a job that won’t schedule me anymore. And I am still paying for transportation wherever I go.
I wake up every morning with no drive. I often stay asleep because I feel like there is nothing to look forward to. I no longer feel like I can talk to my friends. I feel disconnected from reality. I need help.June 12, 2018 at 2:42 am #212153
It reads like your parents have treated you like you were a criminal, your whole life, that you live in prison with many restrictions and very few privileges.
No wonder you “feel disconnected from reality”- you are in prison. Not seeing freedom happening in your life any time soon feels like “there is nothing to look forward to”
I am thinking that first priority is to free yourself from the prison, that is your home, move out. Once you move out you will still have to deal with the damage that having lived in prison for so long has caused you.
But first thing, free yourself, somehow. How…?
anitaJune 16, 2018 at 6:17 am #212695
I feel your anger and frustration and how those emotions are shutting you in. Still, it sounds like your parents love you very much and are trying the best they know how to keep you safe and on a path to being a successful adult. True, the ways in which your parents try to keep you safe also keep you from being independent and learning from your own mistakes. You can keep going the way you are, which doesn’t sound very satisfying or healthy for you, or you can try something different which will be very hard.
What is your plan for your life and how to you plan to achieve it? What are the dreams your parents have for you and how are they trying to make them happen for you? Perhaps if you can think deeply about these two questions, journal about them, meditate on them, really explore the two different ideas, you can begin to understand your parents and better understand yourself. You can work on being the hero in your own story and stop being a victim.
When you feel grounded and confident, a next step might be to sit down with your parents and share with them what your plans and dreams are and at the same time ask your parents what their plans and dreams are for you. Listen to their words and feel their emotions just as you would like them to listen and feel for you.
Seek areas where you agree, imagine steps forward together. You can do this.June 20, 2018 at 6:51 am #213259
I can feel you, I am also from an Asian family. This culture of family-bonding/togetherness allows parents to take control of their children’s lives, it doesn’t matter the children are over 20 or 30 years old. I had the same experience growing up- just like you. My parents would be very angry when I just went out with my friends, or go to the movie. (I don’t know what’s wrong with going to the movie).
Long story short, it was painful, until I got accepted into a good University, and I had to move to another city. There was no choice, because my hometown is a small town, and there is no good university in town. My family is poor, and despite their treatment for me, they agreed to send me to the university (I have to younger brothers, which it would become my responsibility to pay for their education once I finished college).
That time, it was literally the best day of my life, when I left home. Nobody angry with me on daily basis anymore. I was struggling with money and had to find a part-time job here and there, but at least I’m not at home. I can think for myself, I can make my own decision. I made friends, found hobbies, joining extracurricular, whatever I would like to do. And I am still doing well with my study, not doing drugs or anything bad. I have my life.
I am still having issues with my parents until today, I think it’s the assignment of my life. (we cannot change family aren’t we?) I know if you have been living at home your whole life, it would be scary to move out, because you will be on your own. So my first advice, take courage, move out of your home.