Thu | Jul 18, 2019

Kelly's World | Get over it, old-timers, it’s not your call

Published:Monday | June 17, 2019 | 12:05 AM

I Came across a meme recently where someone was questioning why people block their relatives on social media because they’re afraid the relatives will not approve of how they live.

The gentleman in the meme was sitting there saying (something along the lines of), ‘Yea, Aunty, I smoke weed. What you gonna do about it?’

Now, for the record, I don’t smoke the weed (or the ganja, the chronic, Mary Jane, or any name you prefer).

But there will be a few things that some relatives, especially my more religious ones, may not be enamoured with.

At this point, I’ll say get your minds out of the gutter, and no, I have no intention of giving you even an inkling of what some of those things are.

For those who haven’t lost interest in the column, I can say that I totally understand how the meme creator feels.

Growing up in Jamaica, particularly in a very Christian-centred family like I did, certain behaviour is taught and definitely expected.

I can safely tell you that my cousins and I have never forgotten the lessons we learned as children.

‘Old teachings’

Over time, though, as you become your own person and that confusing stage of life now as young adulthood comes along, some of the ‘old teachings’ may not seem so sage.

Sure, the wholesome values that were hammered into our brains and minds are still in the memory banks and utilised (to some degree).

But maybe they’ve just taken a tweak or two (or plenty) over the years. It’s worse if the matriarch and/or patriarch of the family makes the transition.

Sometimes families downright fall apart after the elder, the one who kept the bonds strong, passes on.

But really, all it comes down to is that behaviours will always change.

Every generation experiences stuff that the previous generation would never have dreamed of.

That goes especially for this generation, where the average person is exposed to lifestyle and cultures that their grandparents would gawk at in amazement.

I envision an elderly relative turning up their nose at the fact that likkle Keisha, who used to run around their house only in diapers, is now jumping carnival, in what is pretty much another diaper.

It’s not even your family members that some people worry about. You ever meet one of your primary/prep school teachers whose first remark is about your attire, hairstyle, or the tattoos now on your arm? Bruh!

Best advice

The best advice I can come up with for the older folks is get over it. Actually, get over it quickly.

One, you didn’t necessarily stick to the ‘path’ step for step that your parents and elders set.

Second, your offspring, nephews, and nieces, and any other relative you helped to raise, are going to have to grow up at some point. They are going to make their own mistakes.

And three, it’s just not your life to live.

So maybe a particular nephew does smoke the weed. Maybe another took up a profession you’re not crazy about like, let’s say, being a dancehall deejay.

Ah well, get over it.

 Link me at daviot.kelly@gleanerjm.com.