Growing up in a Filipino family, one of the things that most of us probably experienced (or are still experiencing) is having overprotective parents. From imposing curfews to banning you from parties, there are parents who are too strict when it comes to your activities and whereabouts. Honestly, it could get pretty draining. I remember there had been times when I got so jealous over my friend's lenient parents that I wished that they were my parents.
But as I grew older, I learned my lesson and understood my parents' way of raising me. I became thankful knowing that they only disciplined me enough to be the responsible adult that I am now. Of course, there were disadvantages of being in a strict household, and we all acknowledge it. But, here, I want to share the positive side of having overprotective parents and what I learned from it.
1. Appreciate the little moments in life.
Since most of the time, my parents don't allow me to go out with my friends, I appreciate the times when they do. Yes, I admit that there were moments that made me sad whenever I couldn't join my friends when they go to the movies or even just to grab dinner because of my curfew. But every time my mom allowed me to attend a party or term-ender, I enjoy every moment because I'm not sure when they would allow me again. Honestly, I think if they allowed me all the time when I was young, I would feel like those moments were just normal, and I wouldn't enjoy them as much.
2. Cope with the consequences.
Just because I followed my strict parents' orders most of the time, it doesn't mean that I never once disobeyed them. Just like every curious teenager, there were times when I went somewhere without them knowing or pretended that I forgot the time that's why I went home after my curfew. Of course, they grounded me for breaking the rules. Through these experiences, I learned that there are consequences for every bad thing you would do while growing up. Although they're not strict anymore since I'm already an adult, I would still remind myself of the things that they taught me, so I wouldn't have to deal with the consequences of my mistakes later on.
3. Have better self-control.
When you have overprotective parents, it's likely possible that you would have better self-control than other kids. Instead of following what you desire all the time, you learn to think of the possible things that would happen to you if you do it especially if it's something you don't actually need. For example, if you're having a shopping spree with your friends, you would learn how to control your budget more since that's what your parents taught you every time you went shopping. In my experience, I was disciplined enough to control myself when the people around me are doing things that I know wouldn't benefit me at all regardless of the peer pressure. Yup, I'm not easily persuaded!
4. Protecting myself should be one of my priorities.
From backstabbers to bullies in school, I learned to protect myself and be mindful of the people I'm surrounded with all the time. And I got that characteristic until now. I learned at a young age that you can't trust everyone, even the people you're with 24/7. Not everyone is going to be honest with you, and some just want to be around you to pull you down. And because my overprotective parents made it their priority to protect me from both physical and emotional harm, I learned to protect myself, too.
5. There's still a lot of things that I can discover.
This can be an advantage and disadvantage of having overprotective parents since some of you might feel that you're being left behind because you're discovering a lot of things that other people already know. But for me this is an advantage because now that I'm already allowed to do anything that I want, it feels good to see that I'm experiencing a lot of things that other people already experienced. Unlike them who feel nonchalant towards having a beach trip with friends or going somewhere far away alone, I feel delighted. Sometimes, I'm more excited than them like a child waiting for her Christmas presents to be opened.
6. Whatever happens, I'll always have them by my side.
There would be times that I would be annoyed at how protective my parents are. But I know that at the end of the day, I would always have them by my side. That's their way of showing that they care because they don't want me to get hurt. As a working young adult, I admit that there would be times when I would miss giving them updates or getting messages from them making sure that I'm safe. Those moments assured me that they'll never leave my side.
If you have overprotective parents like me and are currently experiencing these things, cherish it. Based on my experience, I know how it can get difficult when you don't get what you want. But try to understand them and look at their perspective because sometimes they actually know what's best for you. Enjoy these moments now because you're going to wake up one day and miss receiving 9 missed calls and 10 text messages reminding you to take care of yourself always.
ALSO READ: In Focus: When It's Okay To Not Follow Your Parents' Rules