How Do I Accept My Kids’ Interests in Kpop, Kdrama and Other Korean Stuff?
Waayyy back in 2014, my daughter was scrolling through YouTube and saw a video titled “Fire” by BTS and clicked on it. That was her first experience of K-Pop and that’s when my nightmare started.
She became obsessed with the K-Pop industry and one day, she showed me one of the videos, thinking I would be as impressed as she was. But, as soon as I heard it was in Chinese –um sorry, I meant Korean – I told her to switch it off and never show me this s***t again.
I agree that was rude and savage. But, in my case, I’m an Indian by blood and I was raised in a family where everyone was very traditional and strictly religious. Apart from religious hymns, we were told to stay away from “worldly” music. Of course, I tried to give my kids more freedom, but I never expected them to get into K-Pop, K-drama or other Korean stuff.
Years ago, I was upset for her showing interest in these Korean groups or listening to their music. I even grounded her and forced her to delete those songs from her phone. However, gradually, I realized that giving her that “piss off” look whenever she gets started with her BTS talks or not accepting her interests will only make her unhappy. Hence, I started cheering her for being open-minded about other cultures. And, today, I’m way more connected with my daughter than before and all thanks go to the Korean wave.
They Are Not Doing Anything Illegal or Dangerous
As your happy and loving kids evolve into teenagers, teenage rebellion will start rearing its head at the early onset of puberty. It is the point of life where a child starts rejecting the authority of parents, chafing at being treated like a small kid and making their own decisions without consulting parents. It is the stage I was most afraid of because that’s when kids could be tempted to sneak out at night or get involved in illegal stuff like drugs.
I was thankful that my daughter didn’t decide to get piercings or go partying without my consent but instead showed an interest in a country’s culture, lifestyle, foods, shows and music.
So, if you are going through the same phase as me, count your lucky stars that your kid’s interested in Korean stuff rather than smoking weed or fooling around.
They Are Learning a New Language
Previously, I used to be annoyed that my daughter was studying Korean rather than Spanish, French or Italian. However, imagine my surprise when I learned that Hangeul is one of the most exceptionally difficult languages to learn for native English speakers.
I realized that if she is able to grasp such complicated language, at a very young age, it means she is talented and I should be happy about that.
A New Culture
“Among all the cultures in the world, why did my child have to like the Korean culture?”
“All these Korean stuff are weird.”
“Why’s Korean food so different from ours?”
“These guys look like girls!”
Each culture differs and has its own way of thinking, set of values and beliefs, dress code and eating habits.
I get that you and I are not used to guys wearing makeup, but that doesn’t mean we can call them “gays” – not that I have anything against gays. We have to stop being biased about the Korean culture and let our kids follow their interests.
Plus, the more they learn of a new culture, the more they become social, mature and knowledgeable.
Let Them Follow Their Interests
I do not have the right to tell any parent how to raise their kids, but if there was one thing I could tell you is that you have to understand that your kid cannot share your interest in Jane Austen or Stephen King. Nor, can they be similar to other kids grooving to the latest song of Taylor Swift or Ariana Grande.