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xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #15 on: Mar 2nd, 2003, 8:58pm »

Dr. Mehta,
I came across your article "Confused Desi! Who is
Really Confused? Parents or Children??" It was
entertaining and truthful. Just wanted to let you
know that I enjoyed it and wanted to encourage you to
continue writing! (I belong to the "cute desi"
generation who went through college and grad school
and work as a professional now).
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xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #16 on: Mar 2nd, 2003, 9:02pm »

Dear Dr. Mehta,
I'm doing a project on multiculturalism issues between Asian parents and
children. Being a second generation Indian living here in the U.S., I felt
that this topic would be perfect...a great way to give my parents a gist of
how I feel, just before I graduate (so if they want to blow up on me i'll be
far away). Today I found an article of yours, "Confused Desi! Who is Really
Confused? Parents or Children??", and it was shocking to me that an indian
"uncle" from the first generation could understand how we felt. Your
description of mainstream Desis was exactly how I would describe myself and
many of my desi friends. I would really appreciate it if you could send me
some more information or anything else that you have been working on for
this topic.

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Vijay Uncle
xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #17 on: Mar 2nd, 2003, 9:07pm »

Dear Vipasha,

You are absolutely normal!
I agree with you one hundred percent the anal behavior of Desi parents are taking the toll on our youngsters. It is because of your double life you are forced to live that you will slowly move away from your parents. And being the oldest one is the tough spot to be. They will pour all kind of guilt on you but they are Wrong! The whole business of family reputation being ruined because of one child is biggest desi balony and does not hold true in this culture.
Vijay Uncle

Because of the fact we never talk about it and never discuss this in open so many of girls of ur generation are stuck in losing relationship and can not get out. Making out with guys and not enjoying it. The whole beauty and maturing process of meeting opposite sex and learning to understand them and accomodate them is screwed up. And sex education is never discussed .. emotional consequences of the sex and intimate physical exeriences are never thought of.

But you need to become stronger and we might want to make an effort educating your parents. You might be surprised how you could be wrong in predicting what ur parents will do if they find out. We are not as dumb as you guys think!

I dont know how old you are but seems to be 16-17 years old.

Contrary to popular belief having a boy friend does not decrease concentration in studies. Parents who allow dating their kids do not do any more sex than ones who do not allow it.

I must congratulate you because there is some part of you who want to find a solution than to go underground and mess with guys.

We have not yet touched alcohol, cigarettes and drugs which are bigger problems than hormones.

Good luck and keep me posted. I have put all my contact numbers below and you or your friends may contact me if you need me. Encourage your friends to contact me if they need.

Sex is a wonderful thing done properly and it is horrible thing when done underground with guilt
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xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #18 on: Mar 2nd, 2003, 9:08pm »

Dear Uncle,

Thanks for the reply. But, I seriously can't even think of my parents understanding this... maybe my mom. But my dad would literally have a heart attack. He grew up with 100% in studies, had a guru, took yoga all through high school and college, was top in his entire state, and leads a very very focused life. My dad is a genius and he thinks dating is crap, and people should wait as long as possible on the whole marriage deal, till they have fully developed themselves.. Sometimes, i can see where he is coming from... it's just that i wasn't raised in that kind of environment.

In school, I'm really considered somewhat of an angel. I never get in trouble, i work hard and take advanced courses, i'm a virgin and plan to stay that way till im married and everyone knows that, i don't drink or do drugs, and i'm pretty much happy most of the days. But i feel like a slut when i come home realizing that i just gave a boy my cell phone number. Mom would say that the guys just want one thing and once they get it they'll run away, "It's not you I don't trust, it's them." And Dad will think I lost my mind.

How do you plan on solving this problem? Do you think the government should fund programs in high schools that support 2nd generation teens? How do you think we can get parents involved?
Do you know where I can get statistics for the alchohol/drug/cigarette use among Indians in America?

Thank you for all the help
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Sarah P
xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #19 on: Mar 2nd, 2003, 9:11pm »

This is about the confused desis article. I was in
Karachi when I was little and then I came here and I
think the desi adults acted more normal there than
they do here. In Karachi, it was in childrenís zameer
to be shararity, and it was in teenagersí zameer to be
nadaan and dil phaink. No one thought much of it. It
wasnít a big deal and children grew out of it.

When I came here, I felt the desi grownups were
horribly mean. Children might not fit in at school and
when coming home, instead of getting hamdardi from
parents and adults all they got were people who yelled
at them all the time. Peopleís mother in laws donít
act as bad in Pakistan as some ďauntiesĒ I know here
who backbite about children and say mean things about
them and to them. Bachon kai nak mai dum ker keh rukh
detay hain. Desi communities in America can be
nightmarish for sensitive children whose feelings can
get hurt easily. Everyone is your saas here. Children
lead double lives because yeh loag hur baat ka
bhutangar bana detay hain. Jena haram kurdaitay hain.
Well some brave children donít lead double lives but
people scapegoat them. Children are treated badly for
being nadaan.

I know children are given a lot of useless stuff here-
designer clothes and stereos but children donít really
want stuff, they want hamdardi.

In Pakistan, parents are strict but fond grandparents
take your side. Like the ďiss ko toe saat khon maaf
hainĒ sort of thing. But here itís like no one is on
your side ever. Everyone harasses you more than the
next person.

I know desi children who hang out with white people
all the time simply because desi people are mean to
them all the time, finding faults with them all the
time so they hang out with the white people because
they treat them better. Achay sai baat kurtay hain.
Moe phalakay nahin phertay.

Itís like self-fulfilling prophesy. If you treat
children like theyíll do wrong things, they probably

And if kids have no confidence because grownups are
putting them down all the time, how are they supposed
to get good grades? I know Iíve done well when I was
confident and didnít do that great when I wasnít. I
was lucky because I had desi professors who thought I
was intelligent.

We shouldnít treat people from other cultures like
theyíre achoot and if weíre just normal, roshan nazar
and asool dar I think weíll do fine.

Desi children here are raised on really bad Indian
movies. Our culture is really our history and
literature like shaeery and Ghalib and stuff and we
need Ghalib much more than we need to keep up
appearances or watch lame movies. People like Ghalib
and stuff tell us what is like to be human and desi
parents here tend to forget in their fright that their
children are becoming westernized, what it means to be
human. Itís like Ghalib says ďmai bhi mo mai zuban
rakhta hoen, kash puchain keh muda kiya hai.Ē

Anyway I think a lot of Indian movies are really cheap
and bad sohbat. If desi parents donít want their
children to be dil phiank, they shouldnít be playing
Indian love songs all the time.

I donít even want to invite a lot of old desi people
to my wedding because I donít like them.

On TV sitcoms peopleís parents are nice to them and
itís their brothers and sisters who bug them. But with
me, itís my brother and sister- wonderful angels who
have always been the nicest to me. But still my
parents are a million times better than some desi
parents I know. I went to visit my aunt in Markham,
Toronto. Desi parents in Markham are like evil. Even
my grandma thinks there is something seriously wrong
with desi parents in Markham. After staying with my
evil aunt I really appreciate my own parents much
more. For one thing my mom makes better biryani.

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Gautam Modali
xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #20 on: Mar 2nd, 2003, 9:18pm »

hello, my name is gautam modali. I am 17 year old telugu speaking male living in richmond, va. I go to cloverhill highschool.
i have to say, I think you've hit the nail on the spot in your article about desi teenage life in america
I am very happy that someone is addressing this issue. My parents aren't too oppressive. In fact they're pretty open minded about many things....except dating.
There are girls in my school who ireally like, but can't seem to get through to my parents. I have no idea how to approach them with this issue. Its never been brought up before, its my senior year...and I really want to go to the prom with a date...I don't refuse my religion in anyway
I do sandhya varna everyday, and im damn proud of it. But im also proud of dating, I believe its innocent fun..there is no harm in enjoying life...
please e-mail me back with any suggestions, again your article has been very helpful, and im considering making my parents read it...thankyou
gautam modali
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Mike Ghouse
xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #21 on: Mar 3rd, 2003, 10:07pm »


I could not get my eyes off your write up - i had to read the whole thing before I could go to sleep. It is about 2:10AM and am going to finish this note and hit the bed.

It flows well and is very much the way it is. I can relate with it a lot.

Fortunately - I have fought within myself not to dump my culture and the religion on my kids, they are 17 and 13 .

My 17 year old is exploring all religions, he wanted to be Hindu, then he thought he liked Islam, now he is floundering with Bahai faith... I am up with him, as long as he follows a few basic morals of not hurting, cheating and lying... all other morals are seccondary... and the 13 year old one has chosen to be a baptist, and I go to the church with her... I see the joy of worshipping god in so many different ways.

I have not directed them to any particular profession- it will be their chioce. He is dating a black girl, that again does not voilate my world. I am secure enough to have him his freedom to experience, learn and explore. I will be content with a few basic things... honesty, respect for others, caring for others...

Keep up the good work!

Najma has conceded to the request of the radio station guys - and so have I.
She does the program on Tuesdays and Wednesedays, and I do it on Fridays - all 2-5PM. I may want us to have a talk on this in a few weeks. What do you think? I had done a three hour talk show on Youth freedom and weddings... some four years ago.


If we can learn to accept and respect the God given uniqueness
to each one of the 6 billion of us, then conflicts fade and solutions emerge.
I believe knowledge leads to understanding and understanding to acceptance
and appreciation of people with a different point of view.

Mike Ghouse
Foundation for Pluralism
Center for Studies in Religious Pluralism & Secular Societies

Mike Ghouse is a community leader from Dallas and he was kind enough to host show about confused desi and than viewers call in show another time-Vijay Mehta
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Devi Mehta
xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #22 on: May 5th, 2003, 3:35pm »

Dr. Mehta,
I was recently forwarded your article and would like to commend you on
your outstanding efforts in summarizing pretty much the outlook of the
American Born Indian Society. I am a first year graduate student in
Communications/Advertising and have always felt that Indian society is
the least communicative society that I have encountered in my lifetime
as an American born Indian. It has also gotten to a point where even
amongst these groups of students who are raised here; there is a level
of taboo or miscommunication due to the inherent nature of their
upbringing. I actually had considered doing my master's thesis project
on American Born Indians and the impact of American communication
methods (i.e. advertising ) on their consumer buying behavior and the
unnatural materialistic need that the older generations are imposing on
them. I have found your article quite intellectually stimulating and am
grateful that you have taken the steps to address such an issue.
I had reservations in letting my parents read the article, but it was
taken quite well by my mother as well, and she as well agrees.

Keep us posted on any further research that you may do.

Cordially yours,

Devi B Mehta

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Vijay Mehta

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xx Responses to the write up
« Reply #23 on: May 18th, 2004, 4:43pm »

Hello Dr. Mehta,
first I would like to tell you how thankful I am of you for taking this
big step. It is my dream to also do what you are doing when I get older. I
am Punjabi and I was born in India and coming to America and adjusting to
this culture was one of the greatest challenges but not as big as adjusting
with my parents. The article you wrote is the most accurate I have ever read
and yes, we have become the greatest actors but only if our parents
understood. I love my parents to death but my mom is always comparing me
with other kids and wants me to be as good as them. My interests always
aren't the same as other kids. I usually get in big fights with my parents
over the whole judging me issue. One big problem that runs in Indian parents
is comparing their kids with others instead of encouraging them. Well I am
really happy that you have taken the step to help our generation. It is
always good to know that there is someone out there who really cares!
Well take care and I would love to help you out with this issue.
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Greatest threat to Hindu religion comes from Dhongi Baba - Dada - Didi - Swami etc.
Alka Patel New York
xx Responses to the write up
« Reply #24 on: May 31st, 2004, 3:28pm »

Dear Dr. Mehta,

My name is Alpa Patel and I am from New York. I came across your article through a yahoo search engine and I had read your article. I found the article very informative and moving. Many of the points and discussions you have made are excellent, actually I thought everything was excellent to acknowledge for parents and youth to think and read about.
I am an ABCD, born in New York City. My father is from Valsad and my mother from Navsari Gujarat. My father was a college professor in Valsad college in his early twenties and my mom was a college graduate. They came to America late 70's and early 80's. Living in America; those Indian people in the early 80's was a beginning for all of our Indian community to establish community events, stores, religious places such as temples, and all. Now our community is flourishing, but Indian values and customs are being robbed and assimilated. As an ABCD, my parents took me to Morari Bapu events, temples, garba, and weddings, joined me in Bharathnatyam, and told me to wear Indian clothes at functions or nice dress clothes, they taught me so much about our languages, religion, took me to India and everything. At times my grandparents in India were wondering how my parents were raising my younger brother and me. When they came here and saw and heard stories and such of us they knew my parents done a great job raising us. As a Indian born and raise here I was surrounded by good people of different ethnic backgrounds, I also attended Catholic schools which taught me great values and made me take realize that God Is One even though I am a follower of Hinduism, I realize what teachings and stories Jesus Christ taught we should gain a benefit of them such as respecting others, doing the right or good things even if others donít believe or force pressures to do wrong. I found all truth and goodness in what I was taught by my parents and others and that's why I try to do good things and I really believe in Indian traditions. Not because of my parents forcing, but I found it speaks truth and it is the way I live. Even though I have a balance of American and Indian I take in good things, but I am more of a traditional Indian. I realize all the things you have pointed out and sadly I see many Indian parents disappointed or broken families and such. Some families wishing they didnít work too much and spent a lot of valuable time with their kids, educate them better, and showed them more good examples, and build a friendship or a bond that would enable both to listen and speak with one another. Some parents wished they stop their children when doing wrong when they knew from the start. In marriages, the parents wish they knew more about their children and what they were getting into such as interracial marriages. Unfortunately, many parents wished their children and themselves knew about interracial marriages before tying the knot. There are some success stories, but most from my Samaj and community they are not good stories. Youth back lashing against parents, smoking, drinking, dating, and clubbing. Youth doing terrible things and forget what their parents done for them sacrificing so much for them. It's a big challenge to change and make both parents and youth to realize we need to combat the problem before it's too late. Many people say youth donít go to temples and what the future of temples would be like. Will it be empty or closed down?

Continued on the next post
« Last Edit: May 31st, 2004, 3:31pm by Vijay Mehta » User IP Logged

Alpa Patel from New York
xx Responses to the write up
« Reply #25 on: May 31st, 2004, 3:29pm »

- Continued

I also try to do my share of service by telling people to participate in cultural events, go to temples and pray, I am also part of Coalition Indian Organizations of NJ which sponsors dance programs and festivals that my Bharathnatyam teacher organizes which is similar to Naya Andaaz dance competition, I am also active person in Samaj events. I try to send information through email by forwarding to many people. It works very well and since many youth use computers it gets the point across and spread information. Now that I hear and speak with parents and some youth about all these issues, it makes me wonder if more can be done. I think we should bring more awareness to people by having Indian newspapers and shows such as in TV Asia acknowledging this problem. Also more forwarded emails and ads should be made to make people realize especially youth that it can destroy your life and family. These types of articles should be forwarded to people in internet. More parents should be involved in establishing a connection with their child, also parents and youth should voice and listen to one another, they should spend quality time together, and such. Much work should be done, both parents and youth. With b4u, Sony, and Zee and American media influencing youth to be westernized, we should take measures to fight back and make these television stations realize that it's hurting us and not educating and showing good values, but showing Germany instead of cows, gham, and stuff regarding Indian media. Dr. Mehta please continue to help our Indian Community and do anything in your power to help us. Many families and youth need you and any people young or old to help us out. I know that all this stuff that youth do is a trend, but it's a phase that can harm any family and dreams. I realize when youth and families let themselves do wrong things or donít think twice of their actions, soon after they wish for changing time into the past or correct mistakes. Let's continue to challenge and show and share good examples and mistakes for people to live better lives. Thank you for taking the time to read this letter and I hope that many people will step up to help one another and do good deeds.

Alpa Patel

I hope that you email to Samaj and Indian communities and share your article. I hope you will challenge b4u and other TV companies and make them acknowledge this big problem. I hope temples and cultural events continue to have activities to educate and promote good and the importance of family.

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xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #26 on: Jun 1st, 2004, 7:51pm »

Anoymous saying:

Parents if you really want to see what really goes on when your child is out with the wrong crowd. You can see what goes on without being there such as night time desi parties. Go to online to desi party sites, desi pictures of parties or clubs and see from evidence what young boys and girls do. I found out when I went on a site and saw some people I know drinking, with guys, smoking, and wearing such revealing clothes. Hey, If you really want, go 0nline and search and type these words. You may never know you might find your child in those pictures making a big mistake or drinking. If you really care for your children, use the internet just like they do and find out what they been up too. You see drug ads in Tv saying be creative and smart, be smart and do the right thing so your childs future is secure and they make good choice. Listen to these youngsters who tell you stories or adults sharing probelms. Your children are not that innocent and may seen and done things far than you imagine. So Please watch your children, find out who they are going with and talking to either on phone, online, or at school, and such. Talk to your child daily about drugs, drinking, dating, importance of good values, and such that are mention by few youth and adults on this site. Take Action and Stop thinking your child isnt doing these club or night life activity cause many are today. If you dont shape or correct them by providing good examples and stepping in when problems arise you may lose your child im someway or they and you will have a unhappy future.
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Miss Nisha Shah
xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #27 on: Jun 1st, 2004, 8:11pm »

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xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #28 on: Jun 3rd, 2004, 5:55pm »

i have to say it takes lot of guts to share the truth of desi parties and all. i once thought of going clubbing with a bunch of my friends in south jersey near rutgers campus. it wasnt at rutgers, but a place near it. i found out while in the car what goes on in some parties. it was my first. my friends told me some places have shampoo party i like was wat's that. it's when bunch of people, lots of people over 40 people go inside a pool together and bath in shampoo. nothing else happens, just people with wet clothes but i found out i wasnt going to do that. i felt nervous as ever listening to all this. also i heard women models in tiny clothes walking on stage, and i heard some nudity type names used to promote parties in some places. i dont know if that goes on and such beyond that, but i did see some ads desi parties of using language like that. I was horrified. that's real bad, real bad. women getting free drinks and discounts. guys fighting and girls too!! I told my friends that i wanted to dropped off at my aunts. they felt bad and all so we went out to eat instead. i never knew desi people would do these things. i was shocked for sure. its hard to say these things, but i hope it shows and tells the truth of what goes on
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xx Re: Responses to the write up
« Reply #29 on: Jun 7th, 2004, 7:57pm »

here are some other sites to look at. one is a party site and the other provide links to some. i think the parents will enjoy and spend time on it more than the youth. parents i hope that i have helped in giving links. good luck and to all. to all those youths listen to your parents, respect everyone, and make good decisions. many of these people think they are kool, gansters, top notch and all and they mess up and all. that is not kool. if you want to party, than do responsibly. most important be smart and dont blow family values, family, dreams, religion, and all important things for some drinks or to impress these people you see, you probably wont see many again. so stay smart

« Last Edit: Jun 8th, 2004, 5:20pm by Vijay Mehta » User IP Logged

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