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Friday, January 24, 2014

Honor Thy Father & Thy Mother: Tell Their Story


When I first started teaching my memoir and family stories workshops at the Newberry Library (www.newberry.org), I was struck by how many people who attended—especially those in their 50s and 60s, and with both parents deceased—so regretted not knowing more about their parents.  Especially who they were before they became their parents.

Some of the participants had found a cache of letters or diaries written by their mother or father or both, which is what inspired them to sign up for the workshop, to finally honor their parents' memory by telling their stories.

At least that’s how I see it, the “honoring” part. 

I thought of that while reading this fun piece about young adults still or now back living with their parents, a survival guide, as the writer describes it.  Here’s the bit that resonated:

This is as good a time as any to find out your mum's backstory. Learning to see your parents as full people and not just personalised hovering emotional life-support machines will make you a better person.

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