Saturday, February 20, 2016

De Niro on Parenting

Before the flight to our last snow filled adventure, I downloaded a couple of movies to watch on the plane. One of the movies was, Everybody's Fine, starring Robert De Niro.  I was expecting a light, family dramedy. It was much more drama than comedy.  It really made me think, which is a sign of a good movie if you ask me!

Snow filled adventure!
The movie made me realize that as far as parenting goes, we don't know if we have done a good job raising our kids until they are grown and by then it's too late!  We go through the long days and fleeting years doing the best we can, using what tools we have available.  For me it was a lot of prayer and my best instincts.  There is no quarterly parental review by an objective party.  No one is there to tell us what we are doing well and where we are really missing the boat.  Unless you count the numerous  positive or negative progress reports from school and even those don't always mean you are raising a good or bad person, just take my word on this one.  I am talking more about the imprints we leave on our children's psyches, positive and negative.  We don't know the scars we leave until it's too late, if ever.  There are those who blame their parents for "messing them up" when the truth is, their parents were just doing what they thought was best.  When we reflect on our parenting years, we have more perspective...but in the moment we are just keeping it all together and hoping to make good people out of our children.

 In the movie, DeNiro's adult children have held things back from him to presumably shelter him from things they are sure will disappoint him.  None of us wants to disappoint our parents.  The real truth is, he doesn't need or want protecting, he just wants to spend time with them and have a relationship with them.  We project our feelings onto others and presume we know how they will react or feel, when the truth is, we can't know because we aren't them!

 I once heard a comedian do a skit on the six people in every 2 person conversation.  He was very entertaining but it has a ring of truth and explains why we have so much trouble communicating!
 I decided to google this, because Google is the authority on everything, and here is what I found...

The six people of a conversation – The renowned psychologist William James determined that there were actually six people involved in every two-person conversation:
  • Each of the conversationalists as they see themselves
  • Each of the conversationalists as they see each other
  • Each of the conversationalists as they really are
Think about that for a second!  When you talk to someone, you’re really only seeing the person you think the other is.  But that other person is projecting an image to you that he or she wants you to buy into and wondering if it’s working.  Did you think you were the only one that was obsessing about that?

It is a miracle we can communicate at all!
The movie ended up touching, surprising and inspiring me and in my book, that's a good movie!

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...