It’s More Than 'You Don’t Understand' When It Comes To Your Immigrant Parents

It’s More Than 'You Don’t Understand' When It Comes To Your Immigrant Parents

This holiday season, realize that your auntie's distaste for your life choices is more cultural and generational rather than personal.

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"Mom, you just don't understand!"

"You know, back in my day…"

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Media portrays the evident rift between an older and younger generation perfectly. A complete misunderstanding of the change in culture. These instances are depicted in typical teen tropes of listening to edgy music despite their parent's dislike of it, when the parent critiques the teen's often revealing wardrobe, and when technology becomes the forefront of entertainment. However, there's another intersecting type of intergenerational conflict if your parents migrated from another country.

1. Family over everything

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On priorities such as family, academics, or friends, traditional cultures seem to have a heavy hand on all of these aspects. In many Latin countries, for instance, the family is a pivotal aspect of an individual's life. Family precedes over friends, school, and sometimes, even one's self. Decisions are made for the collective unit, and individualism is looked down on and perceived selfish and uncaring. Also, family extends into the physical home, as for example, Filipinos tend to house aunts, uncles, and grandparents in one household.

2. Language barriers

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Most likely, immigrated parents don't have English as their first language. Words can be misinterpreted, and sometimes there aren't any words to translate a certain feeling or thought. There are also some instances that the child has to interpret announcements for parents or act as a mediator between parent and teacher. As a conflict, its another responsibility for the child to mediate these language barriers and translate it so their parents can understand and respond appropriately.

3. (Dis)Tasteful attitudes

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Many delicious foods, especially from Asian countries, don't share a similar palette with American ones. A lot of children of immigrants have grown up surrounded by disgusted faces and rude commentary on their home dishes. When attempting to solve this issue with their parents, there is usually a lack of understanding and money. Parents don't understand why their kid wants ham sandwiches instead of spring rolls. On top of that, parents simply cannot afford to buy Lunchables every day because of working multiple minimum-paying jobs. This conflict in food palettes can start a rejection of home culture because classmates conflict with a child's cultural identity and children's ignorance can really hurt individuals in the long-run.

4. College prep

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If your parents are immigrants that studied (or even if they didn't get to higher-education) in their home country prior to coming here, there is a likely chance that you've had trouble navigating the school system, especially for college. The list goes on: lack of resources, lack of guidance, lack of understanding. A lot of the misunderstanding, however, comes while preparing for college. In many countries, schools require solely high marks, which is why many parents tell their kids to focus solely on their studies. However, extracurriculars are a crucial part in American college admissions. Many high-ranked U.S. colleges seek students that are well-rounded, holistic and leaders or entrepreneurs in their community. It isn't enough to have good grades anymore but to also have a laundry list of leadership experience, volunteerism, and/or creativity. Most immigrant parents, however, may nag that it's just a waste of time. However, in U.S. colleges, involvement means just as much as the grades.

5. College 

This is literally how college feels. Thanks, Hudson.

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College in the United States is set different from many other schools around the world. The general understanding, for instance, that your major doesn't have to correlate with your career choice is an upcoming, but primarily American, thing to believe. Other countries usually have their schools set up for a direct relationship between and career, such as History major means Historian or History professor. However, in the U.S., a History major can translate to politician, businessman, filmmaker, or journalist. The flexibilities are well-known to be endless.

6. The Future

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It's the age-old (and very wrong) "Asian" trope to push their kids into the medical field, but for many immigrant parents who have struggled to move from one country to another, the medical field is as top-tier as it can get. Medical careers are consistent, present, and have an array of employers all around the world. In contrast, minority communities in the United States' artistic fields seem far and in-between, regardless of how much money individuals actually make. Non-STEM is the least route, which is why many immigrant parents push for the medical field (or sometimes law) because it's the clearest and most present pathway to show that their migrations struggles were worth it. However, this is why representation is important for minority communities because, for those involved in the arts and other non-STEM fields, there'll be more support from our support system if we have more evidence that the American market actually wants us.

Immigration is not an easy feat, and every parent who has struggled in this hostile country to make lives easier and better for their children should be commended. However, there are still key differences that can make some experiences more difficult to navigate for those identified as a 1st or 1.5 generational than children whose parents were born here.

The struggle is real, but the results are rewarding.


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What Your Hogwarts House Says About You

Get yourself sorted and find out where you belong in the world of witchcraft and wizardry.
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Sorting at Hogwarts is a big deal. Being sorted into a house is essentially being placed into a family while you are away from home learning about witchcraft and wizardry. Your house is made up of the people you will live with, go to classes with, play Quidditch with and everything in between. You basically spend 24/7 with them. Your Hogwarts house is your home away from home.

When you get sorted into a house, it is based on your personality traits. The people in your house are typically like-minded people who display the same characteristics as you.

When you’re a first year at Hogwarts, the minute you set foot in the castle you are swept into the Great Hall to have the ancient Sorting Hat placed on your head. This Sorting Hat decides which “family” you’ll be spending your seven years with.

For some, it is very obvious which house they will be in, due to certain personality traits they possess. For others, they may exemplify traits that fit a multitude of houses and are uncertain where they may end up.

To find out where you belong, you can take the official "Harry Potter" Sorting Hat quiz at Pottermore.com. For all you muggles out there, these are the characteristics that the houses possess and what your house says about you:

Gryffindor: The house of the brave, loyal, courageous, adventurous, daring and chivalrous. Those who stand up for others are typically Gryffindors. Brave-hearted is the most well-known Gryffindor characteristic, and Gryffindors are also known for having a lot of nerve.

Gryffindors are people who hold a multitude of qualities alongside the ones listed, making them a very well-rounded house. People who are Gryffindors are often people who could fit nicely into another house but choose to tell the sorting hat they want Gryffindor (there's that bravery). "Do what is right" is the motto Gryffindors go by.

Being a Gryffindor means that you're probably the adventurous and courageous friend, and you are usually known for doing what is right.

Ravenclaw: The house is known for their wisdom, intelligence, creativity, cleverness and knowledge. Those who value brains over brawn can be found here. Ravenclaws often tend to be quite quirky as well. "Do what is wise" is the motto they strive to follow.

Though Ravenclaws can be know-it-alls sometimes, they most likely do know what the wisest decision is.

If you are known for being the quirky friend, the smartest in the group or just great at making wise decisions, you're definitely a Ravenclaw.

Hufflepuff: This house values hard work, dedication, fair play, patience, and loyalty. Hufflepuff’s are known for being just and true. "Do what is nice" is their motto.

Hufflepuff is known as the “nice house” and believes strongly in sparing peoples feelings and being kind. This is not to say that Hufflepuffs aren't smart or courageous. Hufflepuffs just enjoy making others happy and tend to be more patient towards people.

If you ever find that you are too nice for your own good and cannot bear to hurt someone’s feelings, congratulations, you are a Hufflepuff.

Slytherin: This is the house of the cunning, prideful, resourceful, ambitious, intelligent, and determined. Slytherin's love to be in charge and crave leadership. "Do what is necessary" is the motto of this house.

Slytherin is a fairly well-rounded house, similar to the other houses. They are loyal to those that are loyal to them just as Gryffindors are and are intelligent as Ravenclaws.

Slytherin house as a whole is not evil, despite how many dark wizards come out of this house. That is merely based on the choices of those wizards (so if your friend is a Slytherin, don’t judge, it doesn’t mean they are mean people). Slytherins do, however, have a tendency to be arrogant or prideful. This is most likely due to the fact that everyone in Slytherin is exceedingly proud to be there.

What Hogwarts house you’re in says a lot about the person you are, the traits you possess and how you may act in some situations. But in the end, your house is really just your home that is always there for you. Always.


Cover Image Credit: Warner Bros Pictures

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10 Places From Movies And TV You Can Visit In Real Life

It's like stepping into Hollywood!

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I am constantly so enamored by the world of Hollywood and by going to visit places I have seen on screen. It's always such an unreal feeling to see where my favorite pieces of entertainment were shot. Here are 10 places from some of our favorite movies to see and visit in the real world!

The High School from "10 Things I Hate About You"

If you have ever wanted to dance on the same stairs as Heath Ledger or just stand in the same courtyard as Julia Stiles then you're in luck! Along the water in Tacoma, Washington, Stadium High School is located which was used both inside and out as the high school from one of the greatest teen movies of all time. This school is massive and so beautiful it's almost Hogwarts level stunning.

Pacific Coast Academy from  "Zoey 101"

Growing up I always dreamed about going to Pacific Coast Academy and being best friends with Jamie Lynn Spears and one of those things can (kinda) become a reality! Located in Malibu is a beautiful campus called Pepperdine University and it is the school they used to shoot scenes of Zoey and the gang at PCA. It is a christian based college and is prestigious in it's own right so if unlike me you are smart enough you can live out my dreams.

Central City Police Department from "The Flash"

Have you ever wanted to show up to Detective Joe West's place of work? Well head to the Vancouver City Hall in Vancouver, Canada and you will recognize your surroundings as the Central City Police Department! If you are lucky enough to show up on a filming day, you might even seen the man himself — Barry Allen.

Forks High School from The Twilight Saga

Personally, I am more invested in Bella and Jacob but for all my Team Edward ladies (and gentleman) you can visit the real-life school where Bella and Edward first met and their love blossomed into whatever obsessive weird thing it was. They also used the parking lot at this school to film the infamous scene where Edward saves Bella from getting crushed by a car. The school is called Kalama High School and is located in Kalama, Washington

Max And Dani's House from "Hocus Pocus"

Anyone with taste loves the movie Hocus Pocus — that's just facts! And I have some good news for fans of the film...you can visit the infamous Denison house! Located in none other than Salem, Massachusetts you will find this beautiful home where my favorite siblings once lived.

Silent Hill from "Silent Hill"

I will say before talking about this place that visiting it is EXTREMELY dangerous as just like in the movie the town as been burning from below for years and years. This small town is called Centralia and is located Pennsylvania and has a roaring population of about four people.

Hobbiton from "Lord Of The Rings"

I am personally not a fan of Lord of the Rings but I know a lot of people are so I wanted to include this super cool place on the list. If you ever find yourself in New Zealand you can visit Hobbinton from the movies and spend a day living like your favorite characters.

Platform 9 3/4 from the Harry Potter Series

Now this place will unfortunately be packed with muggles of course but you can find it at King's Cross Station in London! If you are anything like me and are obsessed with these magical movies this is a dream destination just don't run too hard at the wall if you're a muggle it will probably end in a concussion.

East High from the High School Musical Saga

Located in Salt Lake City Utah is the real life East High that was used in the filming of all three High School Musical movies. It is my absolute dream to attend this high school and walk the halls of the greatest high school of all time. They used both the outside and inside and the school so every inch of the school will remind you of these great teen movies.

Gus and Hazel's Bench from "The Fault in Our Stars" 

If you ever wanted to visit the site of this kiss between star crossed lovers you're in luck! Located along a canal in Amsterdam is a bench that is clearly marked by all the fault in our stars graffiti. Recreate this cute picture with your significant other and use a quote from the movie — then you'll just win in life.

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