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Stressed out by controlling parents - Please help!

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Replies to: Stressed out by controlling parents - Please help!

  • Sue22Sue22 Registered User Posts: 4,361 Senior Member
    I just came up with a brilliant idea for a new app. It makes your signal "break up" when you want to get out of a Skye call! OP, you'll get the first download for free! :))
  • Aloha927Aloha927 Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    @Sue22 haha that'd be such a useful app :))
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 9,637 Senior Member
    I agree with everyone else...treat the piano lessons and practice like a job, they pay for college. Three more years....it's better than working on the cafeteria I bet :)
  • student7890999student7890999 Registered User Posts: 23 New Member
    I think you should find a place where you and your parents like and pursue tech or cs. If your parents don't let you do this you should pursue piano at X and go to graduate school for tech or cs. I know that's not the best option but at least you have X. Also try talking to relatives who your parents will listen to you and see if they will take your side. I hope I could help.
  • yucca10yucca10 Registered User Posts: 64 Junior Member
    It's not possible to keep both careers, tech/cs and piano, after graduation and excel at both, especially if you plan to have a family. Best scenario, you'll be mediocre in both. Eventually you'll need to choose what you prefer and keep the other as a hobby. I'm afraid your relationship with your parents is going to deteriorate no matter what. Maybe you can talk to your school's financial aid department and explore the possibility of a student loan?
  • NYmommabearNYmommabear Registered User Posts: 138 Junior Member
    Another way you could work this to your advantage would be to pick up some gigs. Although you sound pretty busy, you could build up a little nest egg by doing a cocktail party or wedding here or there. This might make it easier when the time comes to be independent from your parents.
  • compmomcompmom Registered User Posts: 7,964 Senior Member
    edited July 14
    I might suggest that you post this on the music forum under "majors" on this site.

    You realize this is pathological, right? Your parents are way too invested in your piano.

    They have actually probably destroyed any possible love of the piano you have ever had. They are violating the autonomy of a developing young adult. Even allowing for cultural factors of some sort, this is just plain sick.

    Is there any chance your parents would agree to go to a counselor with you, or even a mediator (a kind of lawyer). You need a third party.

    I do not think the answer is to comply, or to deceive. I think this issue needs to be handled directly. And if it is a metaphor for other parts of their relationship with you, perhaps those will benefit as well.

    Please enlist help from someone who knows your playing, knows you, understands how you feel, and can explain or mediate.

    Many talented musicians major in something else entirely. You can even go on to computer music. Your piano and your hard work are never ever lost. But you need to be allowed to make your own choices and who would blame you if you avoided piano for awhile.

    Your parents could run a piano cessation program!

    ps CS is a tough tough major and time consuming. For the future, your time is well spent doing internships and such. Maybe you can convince your parents that it is healing to play for enjoyment only for awhile and that CS is the best route to financial stability.
  • DadTwoGirlsDadTwoGirls Registered User Posts: 2,035 Senior Member
    "You realize this is pathological, right? Your parents are way too invested in your piano. They have actually probably destroyed any possible love of the piano you have ever had."

    I have some relatives who are *very* talented musicians, and I have played a bit myself in public without embarrassing myself. One thing that I figured out by watching them (and a bit my playing myself) is that you just plain can't do it unless you *really* want to. This has to be driven from inside the musician himself or herself.

    Sometimes this means backing away for a bit, such as to focus on university, and then either come back to it or don't come back to it depending upon how you are driven internally.

    In reading this thread several things came to mind. Perhaps one of the saddest is that the parents pushing so hard in this case might be the thing that derails an otherwise promising musical talent.
  • compmomcompmom Registered User Posts: 7,964 Senior Member
    edited July 14
    I watched a wonderful film about teaching called "Talent has Hunger" about the cello teacher Paul Katz. He backed off and gave one of his students some extra space and less pressure while the student dealt with some motivation issues. That student is still playing and professionally. It was a great model for teaching but maybe even more for parenting.

    I have read there is a developmental stage where kids go from doing what they "should" for others to relying on inner motivation. It is a tricky time for parents, when we need to let our children make some choices but somehow be there to guide when needed. We all struggle at times but this family has not negotiated that transition at all.

    To the original poster I really feel for you. CS is a great field but very demanding, in school and in a career. I know many techies, however, who are still involved in music, for pleasure. That may be you or you may make another choice. In any case, good luck!
  • shoot4moonshoot4moon Registered User Posts: 1,137 Senior Member
    Out of the box idea: switch to a new genre of piano. As long as it's a part time job, how about ragtime? Or blues? Or (just in case they would stop skyping) a style that has a lot of dissonance? If it's your job, at least it's fun!
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 28,318 Senior Member
    I am going to guess that maybe your parents aren't from the US? And/or did one of them have a dream of being a professional musician that they did not achieve? You are in a tough spot. I'm sorry they are putting you through this -/ it is not healthy or normal.
  • WISdad23WISdad23 Registered User Posts: 775 Member
    If you were paying full freight for school without parental help, you would have to work menial jobs that would be uninteresting and take on loads of debt. Had a musical loving benefactor offered to pay your way in exchange for time consuming piano work, you might have said yes and enjoyed it.

    The problem is your parents, and now that you are a young adult, that you are training them that this infantile level of supervision is acceptable. At some point, to be an emotionally capable adult, you will disappoint them. Your decision is when. Given that college choice is so important to you, the horn of the dilemma to choose is keeping your "piano job" and disappointing them later.

    If you decide not to disappoint them, ready yourself for lousy relationships and some really lousy grandparents.
  • compmomcompmom Registered User Posts: 7,964 Senior Member
    CS and piano both take time, both are intense pursuits. Ironically, many parents try to dissuade their kids from pursuing music in favor of what parents think is a stable and lucrative CS career. Music forum parents expend a lot of energy countering that idea.

    In this case, however, any parent with experience in music would understand how counterproductive this situation is.

    If your parents withdrew, would you play piano at all at this point?

    This amounts to musical enslavement. I really think it needs to be dealt with head on. (Again, with a third party involved.)

    Post on the music forum. Perhaps your parents will respect answers from other music parents.
  • mairlodimairlodi Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    You don't want them to control you - but you want to control them. You want them to pay for dream college X. You want them not to monitor your practicing - but it sounds like you wouldn't practice without their monitoring you, and it seems like you all know it.

    I don't agree with what your parents are doing. It very well may destroy the relationship between you and them for the rest of your lives. If they were posting on here, I would advise them not to do what they are doing.

    But I don't agree with what you are doing either. You can't control them either, and this is what you're trying to do. You're trying to get them to pay for college X without your playing the piano, something you already agreed to. You're trying have your cake and eat it too.

    So even though you think they should pay for college X with no strings attached, they may not think so, and quite honestly, many parents aren't necessarily willing or able to pay for an expensive college for a variety of reasons, even if it is their child's dream college.

    I would recommend that you think long and hard about your agreement with your parents and figure out whether it is one you can keep. If not, then be willing to give up college X. But then think - what would the other consequences be? Might your parents refuse to pay for college at all? What would you do then? Perhaps, ironically, you might have to continue piano to earn money.

    If you feel the agreement is your best choice, even though you don't love it, then keep your end of it. Treat it like a job. There will be plenty of jobs you might not love in the future for whatever reason, but your choices are to do the best you can at them (otherwise you might get fired), or quit and look for something else.

    There is nothing preventing you from looking at other options to see if there are other solutions to your problem. But it is probably very difficult to find someone other than your parents who is willing to pay your college tuition.

    Good luck.
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