SPOILER ALERT: if you have not watched the episode yet, do not read ahead.
I really felt the need to discuss about this week’s episode of Fresh Off the Boat. To briefly summarize the episode, Eddie is turning 12 and doesn’t want his parents to throw him a birthday party. Instead, he throws himself one and invites all his friends, except his family. Jessica and Louis obviously finds out about the ordeal, and are upset at Eddie. Eddie reveals to his parents that the reason why he didn’t want them to host a birthday party for him is because he cannot act himself when he is around them. At home, he constantly has to act a certain way to appease his parents due to the many strict rules they have set up. So, to acknowledge Eddie’s feelings, Jessica and Louis loosens up a bit and allows Eddie to attend a sleepover at Dave’s. It is there when Eddie realizes that living with his parents’ strict rules isn’t so bad after all.
This episode actually hit me pretty hard because the concept of “The Big 1-2” is something I definitely relate with. Like Eddie, I also grew up with many strict rules and regulations in my household. After school, I would have to finish my homework then do my chores immediately. My parents never really allowed me to do after school activities or hang out with my friends either. Growing up, my childhood was literally school and home. I really hated that because I felt like I had no social life, so I started rebelling. I would skip out on chores simply because I didn’t feel like it. I would go my friends’ houses after school and not come home until late. This made my parents worry about me a lot. After doing all of this, I began to realize the reasons behind my parents’ strict ways, again like Eddie. At his sleepover, Eddie saw a major difference between his family and Dave’s. It was too laid back at Dave’s house that it gave him an awkward vibe. That’s when Eddie learned to appreciate the rules in his household. The rules his parents set up were to keep him in tact in life. It’s true, our Asian parents do shelter us a lot and that’s something we can’t escape. Some Asian parents are just strict and I guess that’s normal. But they do it for our own good. For one part, it’s to protect us from any sort of harm, but it’s also to teach us about respect and discipline. If you can’t act properly at home, then how are you going to act in public? Through my parents’ strictness, I learned what to do (be responsible) and what not to do (don’t rebel, lol); basically, how to put myself on check. Now I’m living on my own and going to school, becoming the responsible person they taught me to be. Thanks to them, I didn’t end up being a criminal or a deviant. We, Asians, may have had a harsher way of living as kids but I’m sure we all appreciate our parents’ for implicitly teaching us life lessons. In the end, there’s really no place like home.
Thank you, FOB, for reminding us that growing up in an Asian household really wasn’t all that bad.