Two Worlds, One Family

I know many of you have been in the situation of feeling like you live in two different worlds but with one family.

 Thirty years ago, our Kurdish parents were too busy fighting for the Kurdish struggle. Our fathers were freedom fighters and our mothers were homemakers, although this may not be true for everyone, it is true for the majority. Now thirty years later, the world has changed. We live in the 21-century; advanced technology, high-speed Internet (not for all unfortunately), social networking sites, 3G phone network, and mixed gender friendships.

Every morning you wake up fighting a battle, a battle between your parent’s world and the future.  What you consider completely normal becomes taboo for your parents, and what is completely normal to your parents becomes imprisonment for you. You want to hang out with the opposite gender and enjoy a nice get-together without having to listen to a long “honor lecture.” Using the Internet is not a Satan-like act, you are just trying to learn a thing or two, or meet someone new, someone a little different from what you are used to everyday of your life.  Becoming friends with people other than Kurds is okay; no one is trying to turn you into the corner gangster and if they are, you are a lot smarter than that. Choosing what you want to pursue a career in (side from medicine, engineering or law) or whom you want to marry is something you will be happy with. On top of all that, your western friends question your actions, you have to go into a detailed conversation on how its culture, and that’s all you can say, because no matter how hard you try to explain your families norms and values, they wont understand where you are coming from. They live in one world, with one family.

Yes, we have all been there, this continuous battle between your family and your beliefs.  I know it can get hard to get your parents to understand that life is different and things are continuing to change, but you have to realize they lived a different life, something which they couldn’t control, and had to grow up in and become the people they are. If it weren’t for them, you as a Kurd wouldn’t be here today; you wouldn’t be calling yourself a Kurdish-American, or British-Kurd.  We have to be thankful and realize that we are blessed to be able to think and live differently, and understand society from different perspectives. Millions of people whom are sheltered aren’t able to think and act like you and I. We are stronger, mentally and emotionally because we continue to live the battle each day. Instead of looking at it as a burden, see it as an opportunity: to learn, to grow. Bless our parents for giving us that opportunity!

Photography by and © Shamlian. (Source:

[wc_testimonial by=”” url=”” position=”left”]1010841_267302113413038_427142816_nArticle written by Karez Hassan, from America. “I was born between Safeen and Sork Mountains in Shaqlawa, Kurdistan. I love learning about different religions, and cultures. I enjoy teaching people what I’ve learned and always giving a helping hand. I’m blunt, active, and an out-going girl, with a smile always on my face. Justice and individual freedom is what I strive for. I didn’t choose my identity, but its my choice to keep it.”[/wc_testimonial]