For this paper, I chose to interview a family that I have known for a few years. We do not know each other well: we are only acquaintences. There are four members of their family. The father’s name is Ed, the mother’s name is Sue and their two sons are Brian and Bobby. I met them a few years ago because my mom use to watch brian and bobby all the time. My little sister alisen was pretty good friends with bobby and Brian cause when they would come over they would play together. Brian and bobby spend the night sometimes when their parents would go out, and I have gotten to know his family a little by sometimes going out to eat with my mom and them here and there. And since Ed is black and Sue is white, I thought it would be interesting to interview them. They said that they would be happy to give me an interview anytime. So when I came home last weekend, I gave them a call and they told me to come on over. I started by interviewing the parents and then I interviewed the two children seperately.
Ed Sanders was born in Akron, Oh. I asked him about his life as a child and he told me that it was pretty good for a black kid back then. He grew up with two brothers and both parents. He also said that he did not face as much racial prejudice as one would think. He grew up with a lot of white friends and he eventually married a white girl, his wife Sue. They said that they have had a pretty good marriage with exception to a few problems as all marriages have. They both said that they have faced some racial problems because of their mixed marriage but nothing they could not handle. They are very close to both Ed and Sue’s parents. The kids love their grandparents and love to go to their houses. They are not as close to their aunts, uncles, and cousins partly because some of them live to far away. But they still get to see them about four to five times a year on holidays and other family gatherings. There are no major problems in the family, just the normal family feuds that any normal family goes through.
They live in the small town of Brimfield, Oh. I use to live there so I would know that there aren’t many black people in the town but that doesn’t really bother them. They like to live there because it is very peaceful and laid back. The people are nice and it is just a comfortable atmosphere. Ed is a very hard worker. He said that he used to think that money would come easy. This was because when he and Sue first got married, he gambled and got lucky a few times. Sue said that sometimes she would wake up and there would just be money showered all over her room and her bed. Ed said that he learned quickly because all of that money seemed to dissappear in a few months. “When you have a lot of money, it seems to dissappear all the more faster”, was Ed’s comment on that subject. He said that when the money is gone, you face the harsh reality of having to find a job and being able to support a family. He is now a worker at the Reiter Dairy factory in Barberton. He manages the ice cream department and said he was satisfied with his job. He said, “It pays good money and has excellent benefits, which is the most important thing to me.” Sue is mostly a housewife, but does some housecleaning for some extra money. In the Sanders’ family, I sense a lot of warmth. The kids seem very comfortable with their parents, and the parents seem like they have the respect of their children. The kids cooperate very well. It just seems like a very smooth running family. Brian and Bobby are like any two normal brothers. They play for a few minutes and they argue for the next few minutes. They are both pretty agressive and ornry.
After I gathered all of the family information, I then interviewed each of the kids seperately. The first kid I interviewed was the older Brian. Brian is 13 and is now in the eighth grade. He said that his favorite things to do are to go to parties, dance, “pimp on women”, and play sports. He said that he has a lot of friends and is considered pretty popular in Junior High School. I asked him what he meant by “pimping” on women and he said that it was basically just flirting with all the cute girls. I then asked him what he would do with a million dollars. He said that he would keep ten thousand of it to buy whatever he wants and then he would let his parents decide what to do with the rest. When I asked him what makes him afraid he said just mainly snakes. His best memory was scoring a touchdown to win a football game and his worst memory was when his dog died. When I asked him if he preferred to stay home or go to
school he said that he would rather go to school. He said that he hates the schoolwork but he would miss his friends and the sports too much. His main goal in life is to get really big and strong and play in the NFL someday. But if that doesn’t happen he would want to be an architect and be really rich.
I then moved my interview to seven year old Bobby. Bobby is in the second grade at Brimfield Elementary. Bobby’s favorite things at school are lunch and recess. He said that he also likes gym class. I then asked him if he had a girlfriend and he said, “What do you think I am, crazy!” He said that he only hangs out with guys because girls are “too girly”. I then asked him what he would do with a million dollars and he said that he would buy his mom and dad a house and a car and that they would all go to Disney World together. He said he also might save a little bit of it. He was a little reluctant to tell me what he was afraid of at first, but a little coaxing got him to tell me his secrets. He said that he was afraid of being lost or left alone in the house. His best memory was Christmas last year when he got a Nintendo 64. His worst memory was when he was at the fair and he didn’t know where his mom and dad were. When
asked whether he would rather stay home or go to school he said that he would rather stay home because school “just isn’t fun”. Right now, Bobby’s main goal in life is to grow up and get rich. After I asked him all of these questions, I was curious to see how Bobby would do with the conservation test. First, I measured out two equal amounts of water and put one in a short glass and one in a tall glass. I then asked him which glass had more water in it. He told me that the tall glass had more water. When I poured the water from the tall glass into another short glass and asked him again, he said that they were equal. I then poured the short glass back into the tall glass and asked him again and he said they were still equal. So I guess it was not really his lack of conservation; it was just a lack of perception. According to Piaget, Freud, and Erikson, Brian and Bobby were normal kids. Brian was in Piaget’s formal operational thought stage, Freud’s genital stage, and between Erikson’s industry vs. inferiority and identity vs. identity confusion stages. I could easily tell this by interviewing him. Bobby, according to Piaget, was right inbetween the preoperational stage and the concrete operational stage. I could tell by his small amount of confusion with the water experiment. He is also in Freud’s latency stage because of the identity with the same-sex children. He is also in Erikson’s industry vs. inferiority stage. He is not having trouble in this stage because he seems like a confident kid. I ended my notes on that and I thanked them for having me. I think it was fun learning about another family like that.