Reply To: Why does anything Matter?

Home Welcome to the ADDitude Forums For Adults Why does anything Matter? Reply To: Why does anything Matter?


I’m sorry you’re feeling so hopeless. I can see why it feels like things don’t matter, since you aren’t getting any encouragement to follow your own path and work to your own strengths. However, if you did find out what matters to YOU, not to your parents, I think you would be a lot happier and feel a lot more purpose and motivation.

I say this as someone who is married to a man with ADHD, raised in a culture very similar to yours, and whose parents threatened to disown him because they didn’t approve of me. Yet they were also incredibly unsupportive and critical of him, so it was hard for me to understand why their approval still meant so much to him, when all they did was insult, threaten and belittle him.

It’s been a long road for us, because of course you don’t want to be abandoned by your parents. BUT the fact is, you can’t control them. You CAN control yourself and your life. The more you’re able to follow your own path, and let go of their reaction to your life, the happier you will be.

My husband had never figured out his own strengths or values, because his parents never let him think for himself. He’s worked really hard since we’ve been together to find and follow his own beliefs about what’s important. Whether or not his parents like it or approve of it – does that really matter in the end? Who do you want to be surrounded by in life – the people who see your good qualities and encourage you, or the people who criticize you?

I understand that it’s really hard to be put in the position of losing the relationship with your parents if you do what you want to do and love who you want to love. But that’s ultimately your parents choice. They don’t have to cut you off. They can learn and change. Or not. But you shouldn’t design your life around what will make them happy.

I know that’s easier said than done, but I think you would find yourself building a real support network of people who like the real you, if you could let go of making your parents happy. (And if they’re anything like my husband parents, they’re never happy anyway – so might as well do what you want!!)

Anyway, wishing you lots of strength. You deserve to have the life you want, and be yourself.