Unit3 Family life
Family life in cities
Paula interviewed two teenagers for a programme on family life. She asked them some questions. Here are their answers.
Emily (aged 15)
1 well, there are just three of us: my mum, my dad and me.
2 Have I got many possessions? Yes, I’ve got a lot of things: a big TV, a new computer and a mobile phone.
3 No, I’m not expected to do the housework.
4 We go out for dinner together sometimes, but my dad is often abroad on business, and my mum works too. We usually just do our own personal things.
5 No, they don’t usually set rules for me and since I’m a good daughter they never punish me.
6 Well, I like our new flat. It’s much bigger than our last one. But I feel lonely when my parents are away from home.
Jerry (aged 14)
1 My mum, dad, grandma and my sister Rosie. Although it sometimes feels crowded in our little flat we don’t mind.
2 No, I haven’t got many possessions. I have no interest in things like fashionable cloth4e. new fashions soon go out of date, don’t they? That’s what my grandma says.
3 Yes, I help with the housework. I wash the dishes and even iron my own shirts. My grandma says young people should learn to look after themselves.
4 Yes, we like doing things together. We eat meals together every day, and my family always come to school events.
5 Yes, I suppose they set some rules for me. For example, unless I finish all my homework, I can’t watch TV, and I can’t go out with my friends either.
6 I love all my family very much. We have a close relationship, and we always support each other.
How to communicate with your parents
Many young people have trouble communicating with their parents. However, there are some very useful tips to help solve this problem.
First, make a list of the things you and your parents disagree about most. With each of these things, try to find an answer acceptable to both you and your parents. It is no good for you to require everything to go your way. You have to be ready to change a little if you want them to change. Second, talk to your parents when it is convenient for them. Remember that your parents my have to work long hours and this can make them tired, so be patient with them.
Third, listen to what your parents have to say. How can you expect them to listen to you if you are not ready to listen to them? In addition, your parents were once young like you, so they understand your situation better than you expect.
Finally, if you do not get a satisfactory result, try not to get too angry. Talk with your parents and find out their reasons. Part of growing up is learning to live with these kinds of disagreements, and learning to understand another person’s way of looking at things.