Editorial Blog: Five lessons Indian parents should learn from ‘Dil Dhadakne Do’

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Zoya Akhtar’s new film Dil Dhadakne Do, which released on Friday, did well over the weekend. The bittersweet comedy about a dysfunctional Punjabi family actually depicts the many problems Indian families have to face while their kids are growing up in a Westernized civilization, in contrast to the upbringing they had, making communication between parents and children a huge problem.

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This is not only a problem in India, but with many NRI’s as well. Therefore, I am of the opinion that Indian parents should watch this film, as it shows why their reasoning isn’t relevant in todays day and age. I do have to add that the movie had several comical twists that made the serious moments a little less heavy as opposed to what they are in real life.

Stop Interfering
The movie states that Indian parents interfere way too long in the lives of their children, which is true. Whether it is out of love can be debated at times, but yes, many kids don’t know how to make a choice in their life. Some kids are even afraid to make a choice without the opinion of their parents. This can be regarding studies, sports or even the girl or boy they love.

Parents usually do want the best for their kids, but instead of encouraging them, they push them in a certain direction. For instance, regarding studies, most are pushed in the direction of law or medicine, often being told that this field will guarantee them a job. But what if your child is really good at something else? Is pushing them in a certain direction really going to help? Why not let your child find that one thing they are good at? The same goes for sports and their love life. Isn’t it your job as a parent to make sure that your child is happy? Stop interfering so much and raise your children so they can make their own decisions.

Divorce might happen
Ouch…this is still a very touchy subject with many Indian families. Most parents grew up with the mindset that once a girl leaves her parents’ house, she shouldn’t return home, so to talk or even to think about divorce is like a sin.

In today’s society however, when a relationship is out of love or respect, it makes no sense to stay together, it doesn’t matter how long you try…the problem won’t go away. It is not easy to break the news of wanting a divorce to your parents, and even if you do, the solution to them is simple: give birth to a child.

This, to me, makes absolutely no sense! When a relationship has sunken like the Titanic, why would you want to bring another life into the equation? How will a child make up for the lack of everything else? Having a child will only make matters worse…for all of them. But that is none of their concern because the next one is also a quite headache…

To hell with society and their opinion
It has always been about the society. What will they think of us? What will they say? What they think of you and your family is often more important than your own happiness.

Families keep up a happy front while being miserable. Being a hypocrite will not make your problems go away.

Do not threaten suicide
Whenever a feeling or thought of today’s youth is misunderstood or not understood at all, and to make their point of view very clear on the subject, the older generation grabs onto what they feel is their lifeboat to save a situation: threatening suicide.

They emotionally blackmail their kids into doing something they don’t support, want or cannot take the stress of anymore. They want to make their children see their point of view, but with a death threat you only get them scared enough to save the situation for a moment, but it will never get resolved or spoken about, because that will result in another death threat. Which brings me to my fifth and last lesson.

Communicate
Learn to communicate with your kids. Do keep track of what keeps them busy, encourage them and challenge them. Make them enjoy life, seek new opportunities in life and make sure they understand that they can come to you at any time if they have questions about anything. Be open and honest with them and make sure the house they come to is where they feel safe.

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