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Relationships Between Parents & Children

Relationships between parents and children are often made more complex by the fact that in addition to the strong emotional ties shared between parents and children, children are not yet developed enough to understand the full ramifications of their parentsÆ behavior or communication when young or adolescents. In Ethan CaninÆs ôThe Year of Getting to Know Us,ö Jamaica KincaidÆs ôGirl,ö and Robert HaydenÆs ôThose Winter Sundays,ö we see complex parent-child relationships. However, a common theme uniting these works is the difficulty for the children to fully understand their parentsÆ behavior and communication because of their lack of development. This analysis will compare and contrast these three works in order to show that children often fail to grasp the full significance of their parentsÆ behavior and communication when young.

In Ethan CaninÆs ôThe Year of Getting to Know us,ö we are provided with a short story in which the author is disturbed, in retrospect, by noticing aspects of his fatherÆs uncommunicativeness, which he disliked, in his own behavior. At one point in the story the father and son take a trip. The father tells him they are on this trip because he wants his son to know him ôbecause one day youÆre going to grow up and then youÆre going to be me,ö (Canin, p. 42). Though the son longs to know his father more and they seldom play baseball or other activities fathers and sons share, the son only comes to a better understanding of his father as he develops and matures. As he initially says, ôHe never taught me,ö but eventually the son realizes his father did teach him much about life and himself, (Canin, p. 23).

In Robert HaydenÆs poem ôThose Winter Sundays,ö we see the speaker remember experiences with his father in retrospect. When he was a young boy he never appreciated the sacrifices or struggles of his father to help provide for his family and secure their comfort. When he w...

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Relationships Between Parents & Children. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 01:19, February 24, 2017, from