Hey joooonie joons,
Hope everyone had an awesome weekend. I was visiting the fambam this weekend for vacation. I always love going home for some major relaxation time, good food, quality family time, catching up with old friends, etc.
I send my desired menu to my mother a week in advance and the food is miraculously ready the second I demand it. My dad takes me shopping to get clothes for the “upcoming season.” My brother and I spend time together talking and being goofy. It’s just awesome.
Yeah. Fucking. Right.
I had a revelation this weekend.
Let me preface it with this:
When I go home for “vacation,” I do whatever my family tells me. Stay home with us rather than meet up with a friend you haven’t been able to see in years? Done. Take me grocery shopping? Hell yeah. Don’t be tired, stay up with me? OF COURSE.
Growing up, I wasn’t this accommodating… so what tha f*ck happened?
Persian parents have a beautiful way of guilting you into things you either don’t WANT to do, or don’t have TIME to do.
How lucky are we.
Before I go home to visit my family, I have to PREP my friends that my time spent is going to be limited because my parents have a wonderful way of killing me with their “kindness” (fake ass kindness). And this weekend, I had to deal with it 24/7.
It starts out innocently enough. “Mom, I’m going to go out tonight.” Her response, “Oh, you’re going out? Ok…”
Then as I’m out… The phone calls start around 10pm: “You don’t want to come home yet? Oh ok… I was going to stay up but I guess I’ll just go to sleep.”
Fuck. Alright, I’m coming home.
Or worst: “You have to sing and dance in front of the entire Persian community for Norooz.” Ummm no. Which then results into my mother giving me the silent treatment for at least two days. So I’m forced to endure complete and utter public humiliation to escape the wrath I might face later that night… or worst- NO TALKING OR LOOKING AT ME.
This is the shit I endured for YEARS (did I mention I have horrible stage fright- this is probably why):
But of course, as I got older, the guilt came on in different forms. Perfect example from this last weekend:
I drove an hour up to see some old college friends and my dear Saaghi joooooon. Just fitting in everything/one in a day was too much. Pretty soon, it was 10:00 pm and not only, was I semi-jet lagged but I had a small case of food poisoning (this is why you should never eat nacho fries twice in one day).
After trying to decide whether or not, I should just suck it up and go home- Saaghi helped convince me that “um you’re going to throw up on your way home and you don’t know the way back anymore… STAY and leave early in the morning.”
I make the dreaded phone call to my mother. She says, “Oh ok, that’s fine. Sure. I’m just watching TV alone, but okay.” I still feel guilty… FIVE DAYS LATER.
What is it with Persian parents and GUILT? I know I sound like a major biatch because ultimately, my parents just want to spend time with me… but sometimes they have to realize that they need to be realistic. This is supposed to be vacation, yet I’m constantly stressing: Who am I not spending enough time with, why isn’t anyone ever happy, when does it end?!
My “vacations” become a marathon where I try to divide my time between the two parents without hurting the other. #hardestshitever
I met up with the little bro for Jamba Juice. My dad comes to meet up too. (note: I saw my dad two months ago and I haven’t seen my bro in SIX months). After we are finished, my brother says he will give me a ride to my car which is parked three blocks away. My dad starts arguing with the kid that no, he will take me. Of course, my brother fights back.
My brother drives me to my car and my dad FOLLOWS us to the parking lot. Yo BABA- I’m coming to your house TOMORROW… let the kid have five minutes.
We can ALL relate to this. Persian parents have a funny way of convincing you to do things that you would never normally do. Sing in front of your class, play piano at the mehmooni (family party), etc. Guilting you or making you feel like there is NO other option is how they get what they want… and it’s ALL Middle Eastern parents.
I realized it was only families like mine that do this sh*t to their kids when I was dating a white guy last year. We went to Ohio over the summer (random) to visit his family. Every single day, he would come downstairs and yell, “Mom I’m leaving.” And we would be on our way to his friend’s house.
We were out so much that one night, I just asked,”Um won’t your parents get mad if we don’t spend time with them?” And he looked at me like I was a total PSYCHO.
Here’s my point- his parents were just happy that he was home. They didn’t care if he spent every waking moment with them, or if he chose to hang out with his brother instead. They were just excited he was sleeping in his bed at their house.
Here’s the difference:
My Persian parents are happy that I’m home- but if I’m not clinging to their ass throughout the ENTIRE duration of my trip, then no one is happy. If they can’t have me around 24/7 to lecture me then my trip was unsuccessful.
My dad couldn’t get all his lectures into two days so instead he lectured me for 30 minutes on our way to the airport at 4 am. #TrueStory.
“Farrah. Eet es time to put a down payment on a house.”
Um… I’m in my mid-20s.
“Farrah, don’t eat anymore In n’Out, you’re not going to estay eskinny for-eeeever.”
“Farrah, don’t you vant a boy-fer-end?”
SHOOT me in the fizz-ace.
Here’s the first step to getting over the problem with our Persian parents- you learn to say NO. But, only in your head. Smile and nod, and just know that you don’t have to actually do some of that ridiculous ish.
“Of course, Dad.”
But secretly, I vow to never give up In’n’Out.
I vow to NOT feel bad if I can’t eat breakfast, lunch and dinner with my mother.
I promise that choosing to have lunch with my brother alone over my dad won’t make me feel like total shit.
But most importantly, I choose to do what makes ME happy because at the end of the day- I LOVE my family and I will do anything for them– but this sh*t just isn’t working:
If I can’t be me, then NO ONE will be happy.
So joonies, am I the ONLY Persian girl here who’s family GUILT TRIPS on a regular basis? Let’s be real…
Follow me on Twitter if you’re guilt-free: @Farrah_Joon