The movie Dear Zindagi brings out the resentments stored by us against our parents. Alia Bhatt plays Kaira, a commitment phobic, anguished young girl. She is a successful cinematographer with a line of guys chasing her but happiness eludes her. It takes the unconventional psychologist Jehangir Khan to unlock her resentment against her parents for creating differences between her and her younger sibling. Her parents were facing monetary issues and had valid reasons for keeping Kaira with her grandparents while looking after Kaira’s kid brother. But children see the world in black and white, and to little Kaira, she was rejected by the two people she loved the most. Once she lets go of these hurts, her life takes a turn for the better.
We expect wonders from our parents but to our dismay, they fail to meet our insanely high expectations. This results in a heavy load of resentment which we sometimes carry to our dying day. Carrying this burden is an exercise in futility. Parents and their kids have a different perspective and it is only by working towards understanding these differences that we can hope to bridge the generational abyss.
The first truth we must accept is that parents are but human beings with feet of clay and so they are not infallible. They may play favourites. They may push us too hard to be super-achievers. They may be too ambitious and fall into the category of absentee parents. They may be simple, humble, unsophisticated people and we are ashamed of them. But generally speaking their intentions are good for they love their kids and we must accept their imperfections just as we accept ours.
Singer Cat Stevens expresses the disconnect between the generations due to controls exercised by parents when he belts out, “From the moment I could talk, I was ordered to listen, now…” Mothers and fathers do have to lay down rules for the safety of their children. A toddler has no concept of danger and so the mother has to lay down certain rules for his own safety such as: “Sunil, don’t go near the fire. You will get burnt.” Or “Maya, don’t talk to strangers and don’t accept sweets from them.”