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Difficult Choice.....

What would you do?

  • Take the money, defer the fiancee till residency

    Votes: 74 57.4%
  • Shoulder the debt; go totally independent

    Votes: 55 42.6%

  • Total voters
    129

ixitixl

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    One of my classmates was telling me about his pre-med woes. He comes from a VERY wealthy family and has been accepted to medical school but has the following dilemma. His parents are willing to foot the ENTIRE med school bill, including housing/food but under the condition that his finacee does not live with him. If his parents find out that she's living with him, he has the financial rug pulled out from underneath him. His other choice is to foot the entire bill himself, taking out loans and whatnot. However, because his parents earn so much, he'll get no grants. His finacee suggests that they meet up when he's in residency however he already feels his parents are unrightfully trying to run a part of his life.

    So if you were my poor classmate, what would you do? No, can't hide the girl in the house because parents are big fans of "freak" inspections.
     
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    ixitixl

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      Yeah. Apparently they absolutely hate her and apparently she's done nothing wrong to deserve the hate. She went to Harvard so his parents might have some kind of indirect inferiority complex although if I'm not mistaken he went to Princeton. He's really upset because he thinks his parents don't trust his judgement and is furthermore resentful of the fact that his parents are basing their decision to support him on a factor that really has nothing to do with him. It has nothing to do with his education and everything to do with his fiancee. And get this, his fiancee offered to pay rent to the parents His parents' response was something like, "No, we can't let that happen. She can't live under the same roof."
       

      honsano

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        Wow, stand up to your parents man. He is gonna be in his mid twenties, I assume. Hate to put it like this, but he has got to grow a pair. One of my mom's friends did this sort of thing to her daughter. The girl is in Med. School right now, but from what I have heard is miserable. It is gonna be hard enough going to Medical School, might as well be living with someone you like and who can take care of you when you are too tired to cook or clean up your house...right? I dunno that is my two cents.

        God I have been waiting so long to use that last line. :D
         

        Spitting Camel

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          Maybe it's a moral thing. I can understand why they might not want them to live together when their not married. I would never do that, nor would I just stand by and let my child do the same. Maybe his parents are just traditional. They should see if getting married sooner would solve things...

          Just throwing out ideas here. How old is he? if 21/22, he's possibly just too young for them to conceive of him having sex and other things like that.
           

          peterockduke

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            If I were this guy I would not invite my parents to my wedding if they pulled something like this on me. What they're doing is insanely domineering and controlling... Disown the parents.

            I don't understand how you can be so old and not assert yourself and your independence to your parents.
             

            jlee9531

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              yeah i have a soft spot for lovers...

              id foot the bill and be with her. once you let the parents do something like this...then they can always refer back to it whenever there comes another power struggle...

              i mean i am already going into medical school with the thought that im gonna owe much $$ so, it wouldnt be that difficult of a choice for me.
               

              Ragzpie

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                Speaking from personal experience here...if you let your parents control you in one issue with their money, they'll do it over and over again...

                Now, it's just the financee, next they will be choosing his specialty, then they'll decide on where he should do residency...

                Giving them that much control is not worth any amount of money....Be poor and live free
                 

                mlw03

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                  i agree with everyone else... tell your friend to grow some stones, and tell his parents to go f#ck themselves. if he lets them control him with pursestrings now, he'll never be the independant man he wants to be.

                  tell him to turn it around. have him state very calmly and clearly, "you have the right to not pay for my education, and i respect that. but if you choose to hold this over my head, then don't plan on ever seeing your grandchildren should _____ and i get married and have children. i wouldn't want you to do to my children what you're trying to do with me."

                  of course he actually has to be willing to do this, or it's a weak bluff. but i know that if my parents did something like that to me, i'd have no problem saying good-bye forever.
                   

                  CanIBeMe??

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                    In addition to what all the Pro-Fiancee people have been posting--- he also needs to decide which will be the better support system over all. I personally would choose to have the fiancee living with me and being supportive with debt (like most of us) vs being debt free, no near by support system, and possible problems with the one you decided to spend the rest of your life with.....those are hard to find. Why don't they just get married before he starts med school--then shouldn't she be able to live with them??

                    Warning----don't let your parents make such life impacting decisions now....once they get started they will not know when to stop!!!

                    .....just IMHO....
                     

                    ixitixl

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                      I told him he could try getting married. His parents said they would disown him if he did. However, he also told me that "disown" usually lasts about 2 weeks. Thanks for all of the responses. I'll wait for a few more and let him see what you've all written. I think it's great that there are so many people willing to respond.
                       
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                      gschl1234

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                        Originally posted by ixitixl
                        However, because his parents earn so much, he'll get no grants. His finacee suggests that they meet up when he's in residency however he already feels his parents are unrightfully trying to run a part of his life.

                        Isn't he technically an independent if he's going to med school. He doesn't have to fill out that page that asks for parents' details. He's no longer an undergrad. If he's a tutor or TA or something and makes $1000/year and that's how he pays taxes, that's his entire income, no? Wouldn't he get grants then? When I was at Missouri the financial director told me not to bother putting my parent's tax stuff down unless they were really poor because the federal government doesn't look at it anyway. The university uses that info to make their decisions on need-based scholarship.

                        PS I just checked my FAFSA form: Step Three no. 49. "At the beginning of the 2004-2005 school year, will you be working on a master's or doctorate program (such as an MA, MBA, MD, JD, PhD, EdD, or graduate certificate, etc?" And then "If you (the student) answer "yes" to any question in Step Three, skip Step Four and go to Step Five on page 6." Step 4 is the partent's tax form. His paretns' high imcome has no bearing on whether he gets grants because he is supposed to leave it blank.
                         

                        rgporter

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                          I'm the old fashioned type. I wouldn't (and didn't) live with anyone until I was married, so my advice may be a little biased.
                          Is she worth $100,000-200,000? If so marry her, if not take the money and enjoy the time you have together without living together. It's not like he can't ever see her if they don't live in the same house.
                           

                          Goober

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                            Didn't you guys ever see the movie Love Story :D

                            Well it is not an easy choice. I know somebody who married this woman absolutely against his parent's wishes. The parents didn't go to the wedding. They haven't talked in like 10 years. Before all of this happen he was very close to his parents and the golden star of the family being a doctor from a top med school. Kind of sad really now that they hardly even communicate.

                            Personally I think he can still have it both ways-getting the money and the girl. It's not essential that they live together before they are married is it? I didn't.

                            Just have her move to the same city nearby and instead of staying over at his apartment stay over at hers. If his parents show up his apartment say you were pulling an all nighter studying or if you are in your 3-4 years say you were on call. Also choose a medical school that is far away from the parents, that way their surprise visits won't be that often:cool:
                             

                            Rendar5

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                              It does not matter that they are willing to foot medical school. It does not matter if the girl is worth or is not worth $200,000 to live with now.

                              These parents are controlling his actions through any way they can. They will continue t control his actions after he is out of medical school. The money is the only way they can think of to control his decisions. If he puts off living with his fiancee, they will pull some other stunt to make sure that he doesn't live with her after he's done with medical school. The choice is not whether he lives with her or has his parents pay for medical school. The choice is whether he stands up to his parents now, stands up to them later, or forever lets them control his life. That is the decision he is making. Money is not the decision he is making.

                              You have to get him to realize this.
                               

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                                why does she have to live with him? it almost sounds like if they don't live together, they can't date which I'm a bit confused on, I think he is going to find he'll like some space when tests are around the corner. I can't even imagine having a roommate of the same sex. during tests, the only person you want to deal with most of the time is yourself. I don't know anyone in my class living with a SO unless they are already married. having a SO is way different in college than in med school.

                                why can't she just spend the night?
                                 

                                gujuDoc

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                                  While it might be nice to have your parents pay for everything, I think my choice is to go with loans. Besides, it shows more maturity and that he can really handle the responsibility.


                                  My parents want to pay for my education, but I would rather do what makes me happy at that age when I finally do go somewhere, and do it independently. I firmly believe after a certain age it should be one's responsibility to foot their bills and pay their way.

                                  I don't know maybe it is something personal and internal but I do feel this way.

                                  I also think that he may be sacrificing his happiness if he takes his parents offer.

                                  He should put his happiness and take the greater sacrifice of paying his way through and through himself, if his fiancee really means that much to him.
                                   

                                  DrBodacious

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                                    I'd take mommy and daddy's $ and move up the marraige date. If I was truely in love with this gurl I would know that things would work out without living together immediately.

                                    Of course, if the parents hate her and ream this guy for being in love with someone they don't like for no reason, then I wouldn't put up with being manipulated by my parents.

                                    I would let my parents know my former plan, that I will marry this woman eventually and probably sooner if I am not permitted to live with her until then. Hopefully the parents would see this as an attempt to remain on good terms with them by considering thier advice, but also it would make a statement that I need more independence and will not wait forever for them to offer it to me.

                                    The $ isn't really an issue if the dude's parents are already loaded. Why waste an opportunity to have a great quality of life and keep the realationship going with both family and girl if it is possible.

                                    I guess the whole self-making process means a lot to some people, I can understand that. But I'd be careful not to get on bad terms with my parents as well. Parents don't live forever.
                                     

                                    Optimist

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                                      Originally posted by ixitixl
                                      Yeah. Apparently they absolutely hate her and apparently she's done nothing wrong to deserve the hate. She went to Harvard so his parents might have some kind of indirect inferiority complex although if I'm not mistaken he went to Princeton. He's really upset because he thinks his parents don't trust his judgement and is furthermore resentful of the fact that his parents are basing their decision to support him on a factor that really has nothing to do with him. It has nothing to do with his education and everything to do with his fiancee. And get this, his fiancee offered to pay rent to the parents His parents' response was something like, "No, we can't let that happen. She can't live under the same roof."

                                      The unwillingness to pay for med school is obviously a small part of a much bigger issue. If this remains unresolved, it's going to cause heartache and unnecessary stress and anger for years to come. It's more than simply a matter of who has to pay for med school.
                                       
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                                      Tbonez

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                                        Originally posted by ixitixl
                                        One of my classmates was telling me about his pre-med woes. He comes from a VERY wealthy family and has been accepted to medical school but has the following dilemma. His parents are willing to foot the ENTIRE med school bill, including housing/food but under the condition that his finacee does not live with him. If his parents find out that she's living with him, he has the financial rug pulled out from underneath him. His other choice is to foot the entire bill himself, taking out loans and whatnot. However, because his parents earn so much, he'll get no grants. His finacee suggests that they meet up when he's in residency however he already feels his parents are unrightfully trying to run a part of his life.

                                        So if you were my poor classmate, what would you do? No, can't hide the girl in the house because parents are big fans of "freak" inspections.


                                        The last line illustrates the problems. Freak inspections of what? Is he a 8th grader going on MS1 or what? The problem isn't how to pay for medical school. That's easy. Stafford loans are a godsend and available to damn near anybody. The real problem is you have a twenty something student who is still stuck on the tit. Tell the folks to take their money and shove it. Living the life of a student is a good dose of reality, especially as it sounds like this person never has. The fiancee will note it as a desirable characteristic in a future mate (which she would likely not if he cowtowed to mommy and daddy), and they can battle the tough times together. Who cares about the money now? He's going to be a freaking doctor, likely making plenty to pay student loans, but more importantly making an important step in life... cutting the cord.
                                         

                                        Sharkfan

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                                          Bah!

                                          Why must the world be populated with scheming, possessive, conniving parents who think that just because they slept with each other and brought a child into the world that they have the right to dictate that child's life?

                                          Like other people have said, if the guy buckles for the money then he enters a spiral of control. Break the cycle now. Break free. What's better, a debt that he can eventually pay off or his sanity and sense of well being as an independent human being?

                                          I feel really bad for him b/c my family is the same way. Always using the money/disown me approach. F*** them! I'm paying my own way through school! They are the ones who are driving me away, not vice versa as they love to claim! Tell your friend to think of it that way.

                                          Remember, your friend will have the pleasure of tossing them in the old folks' home one day. He might want to mention that to them next time they get so uppity, hehe.:smuggrin:

                                          Why does life have to be this way? Sigh.
                                           

                                          ixitixl

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                                            It's interesting to see the number people who say "cut the cord" and have very good reasons to back up what they say. It's even more interesting to note that even though there are more people saying "cut the cord" there are more people voting "not to cut the cord."
                                             

                                            pekq

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                                              Given the increasingly high rate of divorce in the US, it's not wise to believe that she's the one for you. Marriage where love is initially absent (arranged marriage) have significantly lower rate of divorce.

                                              As for the other SDNer, this issue is not black or white. Why do the parents oppose them living together? There are other factors to look at. Perhaps the parents know that the son is being taken advantage of by the girl or that she's related to the mafia or something.

                                              I know of one case where a girl was disowned after she went and married a horrible horrible husband. Completely lazy and worthless. Obviously the family opposed it for her own good. Not surprisingly, she came crying back to the family and regrets that decision ever since.

                                              I do not believe the parents are using money as leverage, rather it's disowning him. Obviously, if the boy is relying on his parents to pay his education and take care of him, he isn't mature nor experienced enough to be making marriage choices.
                                               

                                              banannie

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                                                Here's one option: he should split the difference: take the money from the parents for the first 2 years, then elope with the girl, and take out loans to pay for the second 2 years of med school.

                                                maybe, given time, the parents will come around . . .
                                                 

                                                Goober

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                                                  Originally posted by Gleevec
                                                  go with love, screw the ***** parents

                                                  im also disgusted by the number of SDNers who voted along the lines of greed... seriously, learn to live :rolleyes:

                                                  Well as I am still paying back my huge loan from med school, if I were presented with that choice, I would choose to graduate debt free. An incredible amount of dumb things have been done for love when you are young. Most of the couples I know that got married young (early 20s) against their parents wishes are now divorced. He could end up divorced with a huge med school debt and paying some serious alimony on top of that. If he has kids he could be paying for child support and only allowed to see them every other weekend.

                                                  If things were meant to be, she will still be hanging around in 4 years. Instead of telling people to learn to live I would suggest you haven't lived long enough.
                                                   

                                                  jlee9531

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                                                    what if the parents dont let them get married?

                                                    honestly, im gonna be paying off my debt for years on years and i dont really mind. but if i had to weigh my options of losing out on a girl i can potentially be happy with, and coming out debt free but with mom and dad making sure i dont even think about getting married to her....

                                                    id take the debt. anyday.
                                                     
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                                                    DrBodacious

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                                                      I stand by my previous post, but I'd like to say that the situation isn't clear.

                                                      Is this girl really "the one"?

                                                      Are this guys parents manipulative? Do his parents oppose this relationship for selfish reasons, or are they truly looking out for the kid? Why do his parents not like her, is there a chance that they would come around? Is this because of interracial issues or something?

                                                      Ixitixil, these are questions that your friend will have to sort out. We just don't know the whole story.
                                                       

                                                      ixitixl

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                                                        Originally posted by DrBodacious
                                                        I stand by my previous post, but I'd like to say that the situation isn't clear.

                                                        Is this girl really "the one"?

                                                        Are this guys parents manipulative? Do his parents oppose this relationship for selfish reasons, or are they truly looking out for the kid? Why do his parents not like her, is there a chance that they would come around? Is this because of interracial issues or something?

                                                        Ixitixil, these are questions that your friend will have to sort out. We just don't know the whole story.

                                                        They've been dating for almost 5 years now. He really thinks she's "the one." The parents are not all THAT manipulative I don't think. There are some other interesting factors involved as well. I think he's Japanese and that his father is a bit prejudiced against Chinese. Which I actually think is somewhat hippocritical since he went out on a limb and married an American.

                                                        Also from what he's told me, his father seems to think that he can't do it on his own and has out right told him that "nobody would lend him the kind of money that is required to go to medical school." Obviously this is a cultural problem since his father lives in Japan where the financial aid system is nowhere near what it is here. He's explained the financial aid situation time and again but his father still claims that he is bluffing and that he can't go to medical school without funding from the family. Yeah. It's something like that.

                                                        I've met his parents once. They are REALLY loaded and father especially, seems to think that money is the solution to everything.
                                                         

                                                        Mistress S

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                                                          I have to agree with the other SDN'ers who said to tell the parents to stuff it. The issue is not whether or not this girl is "the one" or how much $$ he will save, the issue is letting someone else control your life when you're an adult. What his parents are doing is incredibly manipulative and controlling, and he needs to stand up for himself and let them know he is capable of making his own choices. Even if his parents have good reasons to dislike the fiancee (which it doesn't sound like they do) and think they are looking out for his "best interests", after a certain point in a child's life a loving parent has to let them make their own choices, even if they think the child is making mistakes. Unfortunately, some parents never learn this and keep trying to make decisions for their children and sheild them from the consequences of their actions, which doesn't help the child at all and leads to resentment on both sides.

                                                          Of course he could find sneaky ways around his parents bizarre demands, but this doesn't solve the problem at all--that's just behaving like a rebellious teenager, not a mature adult. This guy needs to calmly sit down with his parents and let them know that his love life is none of their business, and if their support is contingent on having control over his personal life then he wants no part of it. If I were his fiancee and he wasn't able to do that, I'd end it in a heart beat--you don't want a life partner who's not able to live like an independent adult. It's possible, too, that when his parents realize their ploy failed and they can't control him like a 5 year old anymore, they'll relent and pay for his education; but he has to be prepared to follow through regardless of what happens.
                                                           

                                                          DrBodacious

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                                                            Originally posted by Mistress S
                                                            I have to agree with the other SDN'ers who said to tell the parents to stuff it. The issue is not whether or not this girl is "the one" or how much $$ he will save, the issue is letting someone else control your life when you're an adult. What his parents are doing is incredibly manipulative and controlling, and he needs to stand up for himself and let them know he is capable of making his own choices. Even if his parents have good reasons to dislike the fiancee (which it doesn't sound like they do) and think they are looking out for his "best interests", after a certain point in a child's life a loving parent has to let them make their own choices, even if they think the child is making mistakes. Unfortunately, some parents never learn this and keep trying to make decisions for their children and sheild them from the consequences of their actions, which doesn't help the child at all and leads to resentment on both sides.

                                                            Of course he could find sneaky ways around his parents bizarre demands, but this doesn't solve the problem at all--that's just behaving like a rebellious teenager, not a mature adult. This guy needs to calmly sit down with his parents and let them know that his love life is none of their business, and if their support is contingent on having control over his personal life then he wants no part of it. If I were his fiancee and he wasn't able to do that, I'd end it in a heart beat--you don't want a life partner who's not able to live like an independent adult. It's possible, too, that when his parents realize their ploy failed and they can't control him like a 5 year old anymore, they'll relent and pay for his education; but he has to be prepared to follow through regardless of what happens.

                                                            You can't say this by the information that we have. I agree with you that the parents are acting out of line by threatening to cut of monetary support. I think we all think that what they are doing is manipulative and they are wrong to jump to such drastic means to get what they want. But parents shouldn't be expected to be saints, and if you want to handle the situation in the best way possible, I do not think that would involve telling your parents to "stuff it." From what we know the parents could disown the kid forever, or the could reconsile, we just don't know. I suggest trying to reconsile with the parents (if this were done I doubt they would cut off the $$) and making sure this girl is worth the trouble that she's giving the parents, that's all. One would hope that by acting maturely and resolving the underlying issues that in the end this guy could have his cake and eat it too. But that is just the best case scenario, and from what we know any combination of things could prevent that from happening as well.
                                                             

                                                            DrBodacious

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                                                              Originally posted by ixitixl
                                                              They've been dating for almost 5 years now. He really thinks she's "the one." The parents are not all THAT manipulative I don't think. There are some other interesting factors involved as well. I think he's Japanese and that his father is a bit prejudiced against Chinese. Which I actually think is somewhat hippocritical since he went out on a limb and married an American.

                                                              Also from what he's told me, his father seems to think that he can't do it on his own and has out right told him that "nobody would lend him the kind of money that is required to go to medical school." Obviously this is a cultural problem since his father lives in Japan where the financial aid system is nowhere near what it is here. He's explained the financial aid situation time and again but his father still claims that he is bluffing and that he can't go to medical school without funding from the family. Yeah. It's something like that.

                                                              I've met his parents once. They are REALLY loaded and father especially, seems to think that money is the solution to everything.

                                                              Ok, I personally, would try to talk to the dad again and get to the bottom of the underlying problems of the father-son relationship. It sounds to me like the father doesn't yet have respect for the kid's abilities to support himself as an adult. So, it may be best to take out the loans and continue into med school with out living with this girl immediately. Wait six months or a year or something and then move in with the girl. Chances are that this will earn some respect from the father, especially if the son tells him that he is trying to earn his respect, and who knows, he may help the son pay off the loans later on. If the father takes this as an insult and disowns the kid, I'd just express my sympathy that the situation was impossible to resolve, and move on with life, including living with his girl if he wants to.
                                                               

                                                              ixitixl

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                                                                Originally posted by bewitched1081
                                                                well if she's his fiancee, then they will get married someday, and the parents wont have a problem with them living together then, right?

                                                                Actually, the parents have threated to not leave any inheritance if they get married because the father, in particular, doesn't want is fiancee to "every lay a hand on anything he's ever worked for."
                                                                 

                                                                Optimist

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                                                                  Originally posted by Gleevec
                                                                  im also disgusted by the number of SDNers who voted along the lines of greed... seriously, learn to live :rolleyes:

                                                                  It's not just about money. It's about family harmony. Would you want to spend years of your life pissed off at your parents because they disapprove of a major decision you're making? Wouldn't you prefer having your family's full financial and emotional support as you move on to an important step in your life?

                                                                  He's got to figure out why his parents hate her so much, if he doesn't know yet, and set about resolving it. Luckily, there are several months left before med school starts.
                                                                   

                                                                  maygirl

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                                                                    I think that if he knows that he is definitely going to marry this girl, and that he will never change his mind, then he should probably forget the money. It doesn't sound like your friends' parents will ever accept this girl into the family, and if your friend is still intent on marrying her regardless, he has to take his parents' threats seriously and start making plans.

                                                                    With all due respect, your friend sounds like he's afraid of financial responsibility and independence - if that's true, well, I'm not sure whether he should be making decisions about marriage at this point. If he's definitely going to marry this girl regardless of his parents' objections, then I think the respectful thing to do is to take out loans/grants and have him pay his own way. (It would be kind of disrespectful if he just took the bribe and then gets married w/his fiancee after graduation, assuming that his family hasn't changed his mind.)

                                                                    Just my 2 cents!
                                                                     

                                                                    gschl1234

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                                                                      Originally posted by ixitixl
                                                                      It's interesting to see the number people who say "cut the cord" and have very good reasons to back up what they say. It's even more interesting to note that even though there are more people saying "cut the cord" there are more people voting "not to cut the cord."

                                                                      Well, I voted "take the money" and didn't post anything so I guess I will. I think everything's already been hashed out though so don't know what it would add but here goes. I think that if given the chance not to go into debt, it's definitely better because after med school he'll be able to marry the girl, they'll be able to start their new life together debt-free. That means they'll be able to put a down-payment on a house/condo earlier, have kids earlier...etc.... He'd be doing it as much for himself as for her. Just because his parents pay for med school now doesn't mean he can't still marry the girl or date her while in med school. Also, maybe the parents'll warm up to her during the med school years and your friend and his fiancee may even be able to get married sooner.
                                                                       

                                                                      gschl1234

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                                                                        Originally posted by ixitixl
                                                                        They've been dating for almost 5 years now. He really thinks she's "the one." The parents are not all THAT manipulative I don't think. There are some other interesting factors involved as well. I think he's Japanese and that his father is a bit prejudiced against Chinese. Which I actually think is somewhat hippocritical since he went out on a limb and married an American.

                                                                        Being Chinese I may be able to shed some light from the Chinese perspective anyhow. There are definitely some Chinese who have deep hatred for Japanese because of the horrible stuff that the Japanese soldiers did in WWII (see the book "The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II" by Iris Chang). These feellings are mostly limited to Chinese of the WWII generation because most of the history has been so watered-down, forgotten or ignored that people of our generation or our parents' generation may be unaware of the extent to which the war crimes occured. I'm not sure if a greater percentage of the decendents of victims of the war would feel the same hatred if they knew more details but for me, I don't hate Japanese people. I just find the degree to which people are capable of hurting each other unnerving. I hope it never happens again and I cannot imagine it even being possible but it happened. From what I understand, there are plenty of primary sources (photographs, testimonials etc...) but few historians have decided to specialize in this part of history so there are few secondary sources (books, documentaries etc...). I have since been told that the Japanese soldiers did similarly grizzly things to the Koreans so there's probably a fair percentage of Koreans from the WWII generation who also have deeply rooted hatred for the Japanese.

                                                                        I don't really understand why Japanese people (whether they are of the WWII generation or not) would have prejudice against Chinese (or Korean or any other East Asian) since as far as I understand their land/civilians were not molested/pillaged but maybe it has something to do wtih WWII. Maybe your friend's dad has had bad experiences with some individual Chinese people and his prejudice grew from those experiences. One thing that my pastor's wife (from when I was growing up) who is half Japanese (mom) and half Chinese (dad) told me about male Japanese status was that the highest status a man could get through marriage by race would be to marry white, followed by Japanese, followed by other. (Did that make sense? Sorry if I didn't phrase it clearly.) The pastor's wife is now about 70 so I'm not sure whether her ideas were true of another era or whether these ideas still linger today for some but not for others. That explains why your friend's dad didn't have a difficult time marrying an "American" (I assume she's white.)

                                                                        P.S. I forgot to explain that my pastor's wife also said that marrying a white woman would put the man "above the cut" so to speak, marrying Japanese would put him "at average" and marrying any other race/ethnicity would put him "below the cut." So by marrying someone white the man actually raised his social status.

                                                                        Interestingly for Japanese women it's a different heirarchy. Marrying a Japanese man would have put her social status at level, while marrying anything else would drop her down socially-speaking.

                                                                        Oh, and I hope no one takes anything I wrote as racist. I'm just reporting to you what she told me years ago when I was back in high school. I think I was over at her house making dumplings and we somehow got on this topic. She's an interesting lady to talk to. :)
                                                                         

                                                                        Mistress S

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                                                                          Originally posted by DrBodacious
                                                                          You can't say this by the information that we have. I agree with you that the parents are acting out of line by threatening to cut of monetary support. I think we all think that what they are doing is manipulative and they are wrong to jump to such drastic means to get what they want. But parents shouldn't be expected to be saints, and if you want to handle the situation in the best way possible, I do not think that would involve telling your parents to "stuff it." From what we know the parents could disown the kid forever, or the could reconsile, we just don't know. I suggest trying to reconsile with the parents (if this were done I doubt they would cut off the $$) and making sure this girl is worth the trouble that she's giving the parents, that's all. One would hope that by acting maturely and resolving the underlying issues that in the end this guy could have his cake and eat it too. But that is just the best case scenario, and from what we know any combination of things could prevent that from happening as well.

                                                                          I don't feel like I need more info to say that the parents are in the wrong here, which you seem to agree with anyway. I was speaking metaphorically in advising him to tell the parents to "stuff it"; if you read further down you'll see that my specific advice is for him to sit down with his parents to calmly discuss the matter, and if they still insist that their support depends on control of his personal life than he should absolutely say "thanks but no thanks" and walk away from the situation. No, we can't expect parents to always be saints, but this sort of behavior is extremely manipulative and shouldn't be tolerated by any adult.

                                                                          It's not about whether or not the girl is "worth the trouble", it's about this grown up child asserting to himself and his parents that he is capable of making his own choices and accepting their consequences, and they need to either love and support him and his decisions or at least let him be. It could be something else entirely--they could be threatening to withhold support if he didn't go the school they wanted, or dress the way they wanted, or practice their religion--and my advice would be the same: parents do not have the right to attempt to control the decisions their adult children make about their own lives, and to attempt to do so through coercion, threats, and manipulation is wrong and the child should not put up with it, even if it means losing financial support. Of course he should try to speak with his parents and find a peaceful resolution--find out why his parents don't like the girl and, if possible, address this--but this may not be possible as it sounds like the parents are being irrational; and as such, the burden lies with them to overcome their issues if they want to have a loving, respectful relationship with their child throughout his life.
                                                                           

                                                                          jlee9531

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                                                                            Originally posted by gschl1234
                                                                            I have since been told that the Japanese soldiers did similarly grizzly things to the Koreans so there's probably a fair percentage of Koreans from the WWII generation who also have deeply rooted hatred for the Japanese.

                                                                            yes. Japanese occupation of Korea from 1910-1945.

                                                                            During its occupation, the Japanese ruled with an iron fist and attempted to root out all elements of Korean culture from society. People were forced to adopt Japanese names, convert to the Shinto (native Japanese) religion, and were forbidden to use Korean language in schools and business. The Independence Movement on March 1, 1919, was brutally repressed, resulting in the killing of thousands, the maiming and imprisoning of tens of thousands, and destroying of hundreds of churches, temples, schools, and private homes. During World War II, Japan siphoned off more and more of Korea's resources, including its people, to feed its Imperial war machine. Many women were assigned to be sex slaves for the Imperial Army. Many of the forced laborers were never repatriated to Korea.

                                                                            Just a quick history lesson.

                                                                            Thankfully the relations between Japan and Korea have improved especially with Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi offering a sincere, official apology for the occupation back in 1998. :)
                                                                             
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