Hi there. In this education post, I discuss about parental pressures and expectations on their kids. The contents of this post is a mixture of stuff I have observed and heard along with some thoughts. I currently work part-time at a Mathnasium centre so I have an idea of student personalities and behaviours.
- Parents' Expectations Of Kids To Do Well
- Some Kids Push Back On Strictness & High Expectations
- Even Expectations From Extended Family Members
Parents' Expectations Of Kids To Do Well
Parents who want the best for their kids want them to do well in school. Doing well in school for a student does increase the chances of landing a high-paying profession in the future. There are different ways for students to be successful in school and even in life. Parents may choose to have their kids in private schools instead of public schools. They may include after-school learning centres like Kumon for supplemental learning, extra tutoring sessions for homework help or after-school hobbies to keep their kids active. The options listed above do require a bit of money. A lot of money does provide access to private schools, after school tutoring but the student still has to put in a bit of the work to get that return on investment for paid education expenses. There are inexpensive ways for educational assistance such as learning from online videos & websites, getting assistance from friends & parents and maybe volunteer tutors in the community.
Some Expectations Are Too High
There are parents who take it a bit too far and want their children to do well all the time or they face punishments. A 85% grade which is an A grade may not be enough for some parents. It could be something like 95% and above or bust. There is very little room for error. These type of expectations are unrealistic in my view as some subjects are actually difficult in nature, some tests may be designed to be difficult and students could have a bad day that leads to a bad score on a test.
Parental expectations can extend beyond tests and grades. It can be for expectations to get into a certain school, a certain educational program, a certain profession and so on. One example is something as extreme as doctor or been seen as a failure. Medical school is really competitive as it requires good grades in certain subjects as well as having extracurriculars (as far as I know). Those that do not end up being doctors can still help people and their health as a nurse, pharmacist, chiropractor, fitness coach, psychologist, medical engineer, etc.
Some Kids Push Back On Strictness & High Expectations
Sometimes the child may not see these expectations set by their parent(s) as realistic, reasonable or even attainable. A parent may want their son/daughter to be a lawyer/doctor/pro sports athlete but the child may want to do something other than what the parent wants. There are some parents who never had a chance themselves to be a doctor, pharmacist, accountant etc. so they push their kid(s) to a certain profession.
What are some of the ways that kids push back on parental expectations and demands? Kids could do bad in school on purpose as a way to protest. There could be verbal anger and pushback towards parents. Some could be sneaky through lying with something like telling their parents they are going to be a doctor to please their parents but actually be a PhD doctor in psychology.
Even Expectations From Extended Family Members
I do think this case is rare but there could be even expectations from extended family members such as aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents and so on. Before I started university, so many relatives were asking what I want to do in terms of professions. There was the one relative who kept pushing for me to be an accountant but I did not want to do be that in the end. My parents never pushed me to any profession. One older cousin wanted my brother to be a lawyer so the family network of 100 or so could have a family lawyer. This reasoning was kind of messed up in my view. From these experiences, I understand and acknowledge that some people may not know you very well but want you to do go down a certain education path and to a certain profession. Just be careful of advice.