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How to Deal with Pressure From Parents

By: Beth Morrisey MLIS - Updated: 22 Apr 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Parent Pressure Pressure From Parents

Most parents just want what is best for their children, but when their ideas of what is best for you don't quite match your own, frustration and anger can run riot. To try to help you see things their way, parents may resort to pressuring you without even realising it. If you feel that one, or both, of your parents is pressuring you to act or think a certain way, use this handy how-to guide to dealing with parent pressure.

Remain Calm

Even if it is the tenth time this hour that your mother has told you to stop slouching/watch your mouth/put away your laundry, remain calm. Getting into a screaming match may help you blow of some steam, but if you want your parents to listen to what you have to say, make sure that you say it in a reasonable tone. Remaining calm and speaking seriously will convey to your parents that you:

  • Have given your topic serious thought
  • Can speak about your topic in a reasonable manner
  • Are mature enough to have a discussion, not an argument
  • Will be willing to listen to their opinions during this discussion

Know Your Argument

Of course by the time your parents realise that you are willing to have a discussion with them, you really must be ready to have this discussion. Make sure that you know your argument and can present it in a convincing manner. It doesn't matter if you are trying to make them understand your desire to dye your hair, defer university or sell your younger brother; the aspects of a convincing argument remain the same:

  • Know your own mind and be clear about your main points - remind them that you only want to experiment with dying your hair blonde, not pink or purple, and that you are perfectly willing to use only semi-permanent dye
  • Research evidence or, even better, statistics - if you can tell your parents that you understand their desire for you to go to university, but you would prefer to be one of the 88% (or whatever you discover it really is) that defer to take a gap year, they will be more likely to listen to you as you explain why
  • Present an alternative plan - explain your reasons for wanting to sell your younger brother, but if your parents don't seem convinced offer an alternative such as sending him to boarding school to show that you understand their hesitations

Enlist the Aid of an Expert

It's highly unlikely that you will be able to bring in Sir Alex Ferguson to explain to your father why he must give up his dreams of you one day playing for Manchester United, but it is feasible that you can find another kind of expert - an expert on your father. Think of family and friends who are used to the way your parents' minds work and may have seen them put pressure on you. Options include:

  • Your aunts and uncles (your parents' brothers and sisters).
  • Your grandparents (your parents' own mother and father).
  • Family friends (look for someone who has known your parents for decades).
  • Your older siblings (they've probably endured similar pressure and have survived).
  • A favourite teacher or coach (if they know you have a talent, they will help you fight for it and if they know that you don't have a talent, they may be able to explain this to your parents).
  • School counsellor (they are wicked at getting parents to see the big picture).

Be Willing to Compromise

Life's not fair; no doubt you know that already, so expecting to get your way all of the time is unrealistic. When you parents pressure you, they do so because they are passionate about the subject and it is unlikely that they will back off completely. Show your parents that you understand at least some of their passion by being willing to compromise. Try to find a middle ground - you'll study French for an hour every night, but not with the silly tutor they found, you'll consider babysitting your cousins regularly if they'll consider subsidising your mobile phone bills - and hopefully you'll find something you can agree upon.

Parent pressure can make your home life a living hell, but following these handy hints should help lessen the pressure and let you all meet in the middle. If, however, your parents are pressuring you to the point that you feel endangered either physically or mentally, contact a trusted adult such as a family friend, teacher, doctor or policeman immediately. Otherwise, hold tight because this too shall pass!

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I always have straight A in school; I have never gotten below it. I started studying for SAT while I was in sixth grade. I play the violin, piano, drum, golf, and is also on the school swim team. But the pressure that my parents put on me is starting to strain my relationship with my friends. I have a practically non-existent social life. My older brother has already cracked under pressure and I fear I will do the same. SAT is nearing and my parents are pushing me more than ever. I wake up at five o'clock every morning to practice golf for two hours. I have five AP classes I have to deal with afterward. Right after school, I have two hours of orchestra followed by an hour of band class and an hour of piano practice. Then, an hour of swim practice. Then I have to finish my AP homework and sleep at eleven o'clock, then repeat. Is there any way to lessen the pressure?
seline4375 - 22-Apr-18 @ 11:29 PM
for religious reasons i have to study i think some is wrong with my mum so i called my dad and she said if i call my dad she would do something to me so i did it made it worst for my mum because he missed his work and my mum kept screaming she was not normal i was scared what should i have done nothing? no so i called my dad to see if she was okay i don't like her and she said i cant do it and said a thousand bad stuff things she made a very big deal
riley - 7-Mar-18 @ 10:17 AM
HenJack - Your Question:
My parents have always expected A's and B's. I have straight A's in all of my classes, and I don't think I've ever had a C. This year I started high school, and the transition has always been hard for me. I have all A's and two C's right now, and my parents focused on those two C's and not my 5 other straight A's. They accuse me of "being on my phone too much". I'm on my phone as much as an average teenager and maybe even less. I wake up at 5 AM every morning to work on football drills and improve in football. I was benched later in the season and I got yelled at. Ridiculous. Only three more years till I'm out, right?

Our Response:
Many parents are currently worried about their children's phone use, and for good reason. If your parents think your phone use may be taking you away from the most important studies, they will naturally voice their concerns. I'm sure your parents are very proud of your results. You have to honestly ask yourself whether you think you are on the phone too much and whether it could possibly have an effect on your studies. The transition to high school can be stressful and it may take a while to settle in. However, I'm sure you will settle in and I'm sure you'll do great.
TeenIssues - 1-Mar-18 @ 11:04 AM
Hi, I am doing A-Levels and I am in year 12. During my childhood, I had shown interest in going to medical school. But now since I am doing A-Levels (Biology, Chemistry, and Psychology), I am struggling with my grades a lot and I just found out recently that I actually don't want to study Medicine in university. I want to do either Biology or Forensic Science in university and I have talked to my parents about not wanting to study medicine. They said that I must study medicine as they have allowed me to go abroad to study A-Levels just to get into top medical schools. It has been stressing me out so bad and demotivating me from my studies. My parents have also starting to emotionally manipulate me saying that everybody is so proud of me right now because I am going off to study medicine but they will no longer be proud of me if I change the subjects I want to study in university. This basically means that if I do not study medicine, I will be the black sheep of the family. How do I convince my parents to let me do the subjects I want to study?
suzie163 - 28-Feb-18 @ 8:18 PM
My parents have always expected A's and B's. I have straight A's in all of my classes, and I don't think I've ever had a C. This year I started high school, and the transition has always been hard for me. I have all A's and two C's right now, and my parents focused on those two C's and not my 5 other straight A's... They accuse me of "being on my phone too much". I'm on my phone as much as an average teenager and maybe even less. I wake up at 5 AM every morning to work on football drills and improve in football. I was benched later in the season and I got yelled at. Ridiculous. Only three more years till I'm out, right?
HenJack - 28-Feb-18 @ 2:15 AM
@jo - is there anyone you can talk to about your issues such as a close relation like aunt or uncle who might speak to your parents on your behalf? Can you try to reason with your mum and dad and have an adult conversation with them? Your teachers might help too. Talking is the main thing.
Amy S - 26-Feb-18 @ 11:14 AM
hello my parents are really strict always have been since i was younger. im the first born child out of three and im always been the test child, from homework to movies. when it took my sats in primary school i was 10 and i had to revise everyday, my younger sibling who is now taking them does not intact all she does is dance and play around our house. my middle sister who is year 9 is expected high results. and me im an average b/a student who moves mid of the class, im good at everything but not excellent in anything either. i had problems with depression in year 9 after i lost all my fiends i was emotionally bullied and i slipped into bulimia,my parents never found out. i managed to push through it and got my own help online but new friends. im taking my GSCE's this year which adds extra pressure from my parents im working really hard but currently have a lack of motivation and effort and i dont know whether this is due to my depression or the fact that my parents keep yelling at me and putting me down. my mock results didn't go to plan and my whole year didn't do well either. i normally get compared to other people why couldn't you be more like her.. but when i suggest i have the same results they yell that this is me and not them. im called a failure and constantly told that im not good enough and that they dont care about me or my GSCE's because there my now thing. but it never stays that way. im having problems with friends and recently got played by a guy i was in love with. mymum only knows bits of what happened but she still uses it against me in arguments "rejection because its you". i was slapped over the head by dad because i wasn't revising. i havent seen a day when i havent cried myself to sleep sandwiched for a different life and had to wake up in the morning pretending that everything fine. im scared for my sanity i feel like im drowning and i dont know how to stop it.
jo - 25-Feb-18 @ 7:29 PM
my parents have always pressurized me into doing things I don't really like. I am in the IB and havelot of homework everyday, and on top of that they want me to go to gym, play a sport, learn a musical instrument. I'm honestly done with life. In order to fit all of this stuff i am forced to leave my hobbies behind. And now that the college apps are going to be done I need my ACT/ SAT scores. My first attempt at ACT and i got a 22, my parents were extremely disappointed and now i have to give act again along with SAT. The best part is im not even sure whether ill apply to the US cause my mother is adamant that i apply to the UK. My life is literally a joke. Also when i show her colleges i like, she always rejects them by telling me that they are not good enough. I seriously have no social life left. Nonetheless IB has already given me enough BS that my mind is about to explode. AND how can i forget all the screaming and beating i have to undergo everyday.
cats - 27-Jan-18 @ 11:04 AM
hi. I live in an apartment with only my mum. Even though I bring home A's and B's, she yells at me. She barely acknowledges anything i've worked for, yet yells at me for hours if i make a mistake. i'm barely allowed to have a social life at the moment. i'm 16 and I'm not allowed to go out of the house by myself. I can't even be left home alone. though I have a passion for music and dancing, my mom says I have to be a doctor or i'll fail her. She yells at me every single day for doing anything "un-christian" and constantly compares me to relatives. help??
rinny - 17-Nov-17 @ 1:36 AM
i got a grade 7 (A) in my science mock a few days ago and all my mum said to me was, “why didn’t you get an 8 (a*)
Charlie Twell - 14-Nov-17 @ 10:23 PM
@Harishma - I don't think you are alone though. So many generations have been through this and will go through it. It seems it is all part of growing up. Your mum really just wants the best for you and it sounds as though she realises that she is being unfair later. Parents can show their love sometimes in very unlikely ways, but it is only because she loves and cares about your future <3
HeidiH - 20-Oct-17 @ 11:10 AM
I got my English test and my maths test back on the same day and I got 43 out of 50 and in my English I got a 16 out of 30 and I told my mum my maths and she says well done but when I told my English she got really mad at me and she didn't care about what I done well and cared about what I done bad and it's been always like that and at the end she says I won't shout or do this again but she does and she expects me to a get 100% in all tests. I told her this and she shouted at me and said I won't care and your studies anymore and carried on shouting. She always compares me to other people and the girl she normally compares me to got 9 out of 30 and when I said I got better than her she was like she doesn't care. She then shouted that I should study and I said that I read the book and bought a study guide and workbook and done all of it and she screamed that I'm rubbish at English and that I'm going to leave the school. She then went downstairs and after a while she called me and talked as if she was talking normally and said I will never ever care about your studies anymore. She doesn't understand how much pressure us teenagers are put through.
Harishma - 19-Oct-17 @ 3:48 PM
At my school, the grading system is based on the overall work done. I got an F on a project that didn't change my grade and my mom grounds me for a month even though my grade is still a B+. Also, she seems to not care about any achievements I have, she only cares about the bad things. I work hard every day trying my best but that apparently isn't good enough for her.
znicolas6 - 11-Oct-17 @ 3:47 AM
I feel so pressured to do well.. I am so afraid to mess up and get in trouble. I just sometimes wish that my parents would be more understanding.. :(
Tumblr_queen - 2-Oct-17 @ 1:09 AM
@Coco - do you have time to even sleep. This is really unfair too. You should go on strike until your mum will negotiate new terms :)
Mouse - 14-Sep-17 @ 10:04 AM
@Comrade Eric - I can understand your parents not letting you out until your homework is done. But not letting you go to yoru friends' houses to have some down time is unfair :(
Mouse - 14-Sep-17 @ 10:02 AM
My mom makes me play piano 1hr a day plus 1 hr lessons every week, 1 hr Chinese classes every day and 3 hr Chinese school every Sunday, study math for 45 mins a day, watch my baby brother 1 hour a day, clean, read, do sports and expects strait As!!! I told her once that she was putting to much pressure on me and she just got really pissed off and screamed in my face. Idk what to do. She also said I i don't do what she tells me then she'll take away my phone and iPad. Hopeless
Coco - 13-Sep-17 @ 1:02 AM
Im in IB so I always have homework. Which in itself is fine but my parents dont understand why my homework is never "all done" and wont let me do anything unless it is. Also they dont trust me at all and I cant even go to a friends house. I am 16 already. This is ridiculous.
Comrade Eric - 13-Sep-17 @ 1:02 AM
@Liv - stick to your guns and do what YOU want to do. You need to be happy in life.
Amy - 11-Sep-17 @ 3:10 PM
Guys wait listen to me Just wait Nobody like nobody who has got success in life has got it from pressure from somebody else We do need a push sometimes(parental pressure) BUT WAIT TILL YOU DON'T GIVE YOUR HEART IN THAT WORK ONLY MIND AND WILL POWER ARE NOT AT ALL SUFFICIENT TO MAKE YOU ANY GOOD IN ANYTHING ITS the HEART Till you don't put your heart in it (in the work you are doing) ITS NOT GOING TO GET ANY GOOD AND IF IT STILL DOES, THEN REMEMBER YOU CAN DO FAR BETTER THAN THIS. NOW WHAT TO DO? HOW TO DO THIS WHEN YOU ARE GETTING SO MUCH UNNECESSARY AND USELESS PRESSURE? Self talk to yourself See for yourself and understand that if I do this wholeheartedly then I can do this better and you will realize that your work was never that hard as much you considered it to be.
Adarsh - 11-Sep-17 @ 10:22 AM
I would really like to do something medical with my career such as medicine and stuff like that but my mom really wants me to do law which I don't really like. I'm also going l joining my school's air cadets but my mom wants me to join a different one. I love her, but I also feel quite pressured
Liv - 9-Sep-17 @ 9:46 AM
my parents think im too bad. and that i need some psychology help. They dont get that i do everything to socialise and get better friends. Im pretty less in colour so im trying toincrease my popularity in social accounts.
shenayaa - 21-Jul-17 @ 4:05 PM
Abby - Your Question:
Hi I am in the eight grade and my mom pressures me too Much to get good grades just because I got like one f in two of my classes and really yells at me when I don't do the work and also keeps me up at night because she is on her phone or doing anything loud and I can't sleep and now because of so much pressure from her I have to do summer school and she is mad and said that I can't do anything fun and always makes me feel bad and says that I will be old studying but it's not that I don't want to study its just I get bullied at school and also it is hard to concentrate she does not get that she thinks I don't want to study but I do but it's hard and I am so stressed and secretly self harmand also cry a lot I really do not know what to do.

Our Response:
Is there anyone you can speak to in your school, or a relation or family friend? Have you talked to you mum directly? Try to sit her down and tell her what your issues are (don't shout as arguments get us nowhere). Talking is the best option. Childline is also there if you need to talk to someone you don't know - please see link here. However, on another note, you never know, summer school might be fun.
TeenIssues - 20-Jun-17 @ 3:50 PM
Hi I am in the eight grade and my mom pressures me too Much to get good grades just because I got like one f in two of my classes and really yells at me when I don't do the work and also keeps me up at night because she is on her phone or doing anything loud and I can't sleep and now because of so much pressure from her I have to do summer school and she is mad and said that I can't do anything fun and always makes me feel bad and says that I will be old studying but it's not that I don't want to study itsjust I get bullied at school and also it is hard to concentrate she does not get that she thinks I don't want to study but I do but it's hard and I am so stressed and secretly self harmand also cry a lot I really do not know what to do.
Abby - 17-Jun-17 @ 8:58 PM
@sai - I know you don't want to - but you need to speal to your teachers again. They will help - they are there to continue to ensure you are safe and well cared for. Beth.
BR - 22-May-17 @ 11:40 AM
I have faced the problem in my 12 grade by my parents, he hurt me by kicking me. My New Year 2017 was spoiled by them. They made me. Have a bad n lot worse New Year. They says that cutting cake is off the culture. N they gave me a lots of rules, when I decided to quit life without freedom. But when.i shared with htis to my friend ,he advised me to counsel this with the teachers. I just cried before her n explained my life without freedom n living a life of slave. She saved me by advising my parents. But now they still annoying me like hell. I got the same feeling now. But I don't think it will be appropriate if I counsel with my teachers again. So I think I need some helps, my parents threaten everyday n that is bad nay end bad. So I felt like I need help. Before I die.
sai - 21-May-17 @ 3:57 PM
hi im so and so.dont go with my intro..i just need an advice sir/miss i belong to lower mid family some how i complete my graduation,and now i want to further study or do any govt job. my parents they dont support me..the place where im staying or you can say i born it is not our land but the love i got from here il never get if i go with my parents to the native place..as they saying me now is that i should go there and settle\\and that particular place is completely unknown for me.. please help me out..im dying with this dipression.. thank you
alex - 7-May-17 @ 3:52 PM
Hello sir, My parents hav a lot of problem from Me ,they don't trust me,they keep on commenting badly and com pairing me with other people's child,i m getting pressurized for each and every seconds ,for the way i live ,my dad slapped me for my hair's, and started demolishing me by saying if i die he don't care Sir i m really feeling very unhelpful...i don't think so he loves me and my mom tooo.both of them think with out my good marks i can't do anything Plz help me wat should i do
deep - 12-Apr-17 @ 4:21 PM
@Harry - if you've finished your exams then your family might want you to bring some income into the house. Many people start work at 16 and it will get you into the groove as in a few years you will be responsible for earning your own living. Lots of us don't want to work - but most of us have to (if we want to keep a roof over our heads). Besides you might enjoy it!
Mumstheword - 3-Apr-17 @ 1:58 PM
I hv finished my examsanc now my parents are pressuring me to do a part-time job at my uncles shop.but I don't want to do it .they r not listening to me .they just want me to do what they want. I don't want to work at this age (16). I just want to do something else like drawing, reading ,painting and making something . Actually I am quite an indoor type of person so doing part time job is not my cup of tea
Harry - 2-Apr-17 @ 4:49 PM
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