Family Relationships.

Essay by LILASHLICollege, Undergraduate September 2003

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Ribs, chicken, potato salad, music, fire crackers--a typical Fourth of July cookout. The whole family was together laughing, joking and reminiscing on old times. Then, suddenly, one of the jokes was taken the wrong way. "That wasn't even funny. You don't go around telling none of my business! I don't tell yours!" said the outraged teen to her mother. "It was just a joke, get over it!" said the mother in a frightened, yet a joking tone. All eyes, including mine, were on those two. As I watched the argument, I saw a side of my younger cousin that I had never seen before, or at least, that had never been that bad. She showed no respect for my Aunt calling her all the "bs" and "h's" in the world, saying curse words that I was not aware that she knew. I was shocked at how my Aunt reacted; she acted in a way that contradicted what she had discussed with my mother and me.

She was 39 years old, yet her 15-year-old daughter was talking to her as if she was the parent.

"Ooh Momma, can we get this?" Yeah, Momma please." Asked two eager 7 and 11 year olds who just happens to be my little sister Jessica and me. Our mother responds in a harsh tone, "No, put it back and get back over here!" My mother was and still is not afraid to tell us no when we want something. My Aunt Brenda, on the other hand, is one of the easiest people you will ever come by. My cousin Margie is one of the rudest, most disrespectful children you could ever come across. "Brenda, I want this." "All right, put it in the buggy." Says my Aunt, agreeably. Margie never says, "Mom, may I please have this?" She does not ask. She demands. My Aunt is so nice and my cousin just takes advantage of her as if she does not have a conscience. The thing that gets me is that Brenda allows it. In my opinion, Brenda wants to be more of a friend than a mother to her daughter.

One day after school, I went to Chanelle's house so we could work on our science Fair project. "Get in here and put this stuff up!" screamed her mother from the kitchen. "She is always hollering at me and making me clean up after her." Chanelle whispered with embarrassment. "Hurry up and get your trifling behind in here, now!" said her mother impatiently. Her mother talks to her like this all of the time. Yet, with Chanelle's mother calling her out of her name, she does what she is told, with no problem. Her mother degrades her every chance she gets. I do not understand why her mother treats her so bad.

Our society thinks that mother/daughter relationships are so "perfect", but that is not true at all. Daughters are just as disrespectful as the boys are and sometimes even worse. In some cases, the daughter might be disrespecting the mother; and in others, the mother might lack of respect for the daughter. No matter how nice the mother or daughter is, they are still going to get disrespected because there is always going to be someone who is going to take there kindness for weakness.