Hi! I am a college going student pursuing BBA final year and there is my father's friend’s son who is pursuing his B.tech 3rd year. My problem is why our parents compare their child with other children even though my subjects are different; my areas of interest are different, even our lives are practically different.
My father always taunts me to score well like him and force me to obey the habits of studying like him. I cannot argue with him but it hurts when it comes to comparison. I don't like this. I am an average student and happy with what I score. Please help me, how can I make my father happy?
Expert Advice –
Your unhappiness stems from the desire to make your father happy. The misconception we are taught to harbour from a very young age that is the recipe for misery, is that other people are responsible for our happiness, and that we are responsible for the happiness of others.
The fact is, no matter how good you are, your father will never be happy with you, because that is the equation of your relationship. Maybe temporary joy, and then he will find something else that you need to improve on, so that he feels satisfied with you. Now, you also expect your father to make you happy by having no/ less expectations from you. Let it go. He is who he is, and he has years of conditioning and beliefs that make him who he is.
Maybe all he's motivated by is a thought that if he expresses enough displeasure, you will get better marks. When he says what he does, what is important is to ALLOW yourself to feel bad. I know it sounds contrary to what you'd normally expect to hear - but let the feelings sink in, don't try to run away from your reality - which maybe a feeling of disappointment, frustration with your father, etc etc. But feel it all. You'll be surprised how it fades away eventually. If you'd like to read more, I suggest you go through and start applying in your life the steps mentioned in this blog post: http://www.ashwita.com/zen/deep-listening/
They're simple, but life transforming steps that will change the way you communicate with others and yourself.
- Ashwita Goel