Bricklayer’s Boy by: Alfred Lubrano
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Are parents supposed to be there for their kids? Are parents supposed to guide their own kids in the right path? Yes. Parents have many jobs to do in their lives, like taking care and supporting their children, working a lot in order to run a family, and most importantly to be role models to their children. Parents after learning a lot through their own childhoods should be aware, and well aware of what to do and what not do. In addition, parents make their own mistakes in life and once they know how to get around it, they teach their own children to prevent them. However, parents tend to disagree with their own children, about values or fundamental choices in life; hence, controversies start to occur between them. Controversies can then lead to isolation or even to alienation.
The article “Bricklayer’s Boy” by Alfred Lubrano is an autobiography about his life. When he was younger, his father wanted him to go to college, learn and become educated. His father would constantly warn his son to keep his head in the books, in order to become successful and to support a family in the future. Moreover, the father explains to Lubrano of how he worked so hard to get where he is, and being a good father that he is, he doesn’t want Lubrano working in a daily-paper business. He wanted his son to be somebody and work very hard because he was afraid of his own son becoming something like himself.
Being a white-collar man does require lots of work, but you can make money much more money easily and there is also less labor involved than a blue-collar man. In addition, a white-collar man can be more successful, with the use of a higher education or a degree unlike a blue-collar man. In addition, the father coming from the olden days explains to Alfred that money isn’t everything; you go where your families are. Alfred being a white-collar man does his job because he enjoys it. Therefore, if he has an offer with greater pay somewhere else, he would be willing to relocate himself and his family, if he gets married to that higher job. Lastly, his father a blue-collar man, who worked so hard and intensely for his family and for survival, realizes that he was wrong to ever warn, worry, or fear his own son’s life. The reason is in the end his father envies his son for finding a job that he likes and is paid for it.
Parents in general can be very demanding in relationships. They of course care about their own children a lot and want the best for them. When it comes to my situation, my parents are always on top of me about the girls I should bring home. They have these rules on what the girl should be like, and from only certain countries, a girl that follows the same customs and no exceptions. In addition, my parents are always the ones to tell me to put your head out of girls and put it where it belongs, in school. My parents are also unhappy with me hanging out with them because they feel these girls aren’t serious and are a waste of my time.
When I come back home, my dad would ask me sarcastically “how did the date go?” We see this similarly with Alfred, when he says “I rent movies during the week and feed single women in restaurants on Saturday nights. My dad asks me about my dates, but he goes crazy over the word ‘woman.’ A ‘girl,’ he corrects. You went out with a girl. Don’t say ‘Woman’. ” One can surly see that parents’ always get involved with their children’s relationships. However, I feel that this should be not the case because if a parent truly wants their child to be happy, it will only exist, if they let the children pick what they want for a boyfriend or a girlfriend in that matter.
Another major disagreement that parents and their own children have is when it comes time to what the children want to do with their lives. Parents always have dreams for their children, by wanting them to be something of great importance or of high prestige. However, what they dream of and what the children actually become are usually two different things. One sees that in the article, Alfred’s dad as a blue-collar man is very upset and starts questioning his son’s reasoning and plans, when he wanted him to become a lawyer. Nevertheless, by the end of the article, Alfred’s father admits that he was very happy and envies him. My parents always wished and wanted me to become a lawyer, but I know with all of the work and countless effort I put in to achieving such a high goal, I will never succeed. The main reasons they are like this is because most parents want the best for their children, they care for them deeply, and they also don’t want their children to fail or to be on a lower level either financially or level of work than them. Therefore, I have learnt that personally and through experiences from friends, parents should only guide or help their children, and never interfere with their children’s dreams.
I feel that parents tend to be narrow-mined and never seem to realize that times have changed since their childhood. The reason is, that those parents or grandparents who came from other countries, or those who lived back in the early or mid 1900’s, all lived a different way than today. Our very own society, neighborhood, styles, and friends have changed. Therefore, what my parents usually tend to do is to compare themselves at being the same age as me, when they were younger; when it’s time for lecturing. However, what the parents like mine don’t realize is that times have changed. People dress differently, eat differently, act differently, and most of all, live differently. Hence, the parents when they were younger learnt one single way and that’s it; so, when it comes time to a problem or situation that their child has, it has to be that way. One can see this right from the article, when Alfred’s says, “Being the white-collar son of a blue-collar man means being the hinge on the door between two ways of life.” What Alfred means is that he is the link or change from his past generations into a newer way of life for his future generations; they obviously view life and all that pertains to life in two different aspects.
In conclusion, one can see that parents and children have their differences, but together they must learn from each other and learn to settle things together without a major dispute. What parents must realize that they were once upon a time a child, and they should not be too harsh on their kids, just like they didn’t like it when their parents were harsh on them. In addition, parents must sometimes leave their own children alone because it will benefit the children by learning from their mistakes in life. Moreover, parents should guide, support and help their kids, but up to a certain extant.
I believe that too much of anything in life is never good. Hence, when parents are always on top of their children and always making sure their children aren’t making mistakes, the children are not enjoying the sense of freedom or life. I also feel that by parents warning, guiding, and helping their own children, the kids will be smart enough to put girls or boys aside when they need to. In correlation, since parents might not like a certain mate for their child, they must realize that they are not living with the boy or girl that they might not like. Therefore, they should not interfere with the relationship at all because all that should matter to them; despite of what it is, regarding in their child’s life is their child’s happiness and feelings of success.