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Translate from Russian into English using the vocabulary from the text.

1. Мой сын совсем отбился от рук, я уже не могу с ним справиться. 2. В один прекрасный день ты станешь преемником своего отца. Ты же единственный наследник или у него ещё есть дети? 3. Никто первым не решался прервать затянувшееся молчание. 4. При одном только упоминании имени моего сводного брата отец выходил из себя. 5. Не смей грубо мне отвечать и разговаривать таким дерзким тоном! 6. Никто не заставит меня пойти на попятную и помириться с родителями. 7. Когда у меня разногласия с родителями, старший брат всегда выступает в роли посредника. У него, определенно, есть дар убеждения. 8. Когда правда об этом деле раскрылась, родители были в ярости. 9. Не в первый раз мать и дочь вступили в противоречия. 10. То, как они были одеты, лишь подчеркивало их внутренние противоречия.


1. Speak about the conflict described in the text ‘Mother versus Daughter’

a) in the name of Kyle. Explain and defend her actions and beliefs. Start with the following ‘I didn’t mean to be rude or hurt anyone. I just lost my head’

b) in the name of Christina. Explain and defend her actions and beliefs. Start with the following ‘I’d been working so hard to start this business that's why I was so emotional about it.’

c) in the name of the grandmother. Start with the following ‘ I was forced to travel half-way around the world just because Christina and my son–in-law had discovered they couldn’t handle their daughter Kyle any more.’



Discuss the following questions.

1. Can we say that Russia is a country where traditional family values are strong? 2. What kind of relationship do you have with your parents? Are you often at odds with each other? Would you like the same relationship with your children? 3. As a child were you difficult to handle? 4. At what age do you think children should separate from their parents? 5. People often talk about “the ever increasing generation gap” - the gap between parents and children. What do you think has changed since your parents / grandparents were children? 6. How does being an only child in the family affect him / her? 7. What style of parenting do your parents use in dealing with you? 8. What are the pros and cons of having a family? 9. Why do you think some couples decide not to have children? 10. Can parenthood be rewarding? Why or why not? 11. Do you think family traditions are strong in Russia? 12. Has the average number of children in Russian families changed in recent years?


3. Read through the following jocular ‘Tricks for Taming Adolescents’ worked out by Frank Pitmann, a psychologist.

1. Keep adolescents moving. They are only a problem when they stop.

2. If kids refuse to do what you tell them, refuse to provide goods and services for them. Don’t fight with them, just starve them out.

3. Don’t respect your children’s privacy. Don’t let them hide in their rooms and keep their lives secret from you.

Answer the following questions.

Do you find these ‘tricks’ useful? Which of them sound controversial to you? Why?

Work out two or three recommendations of your own to continue the list. Discuss them with your fellow-students.


Work with a partner. Make up a conversation using the cue cards below.

A seventeen-year-old daughter wants to travel to the seaside with her friends. Her mother asks about a)where exactly the daughter is going to travel; b) the friends who are going to travel with her; c) the place they are going to stay. She expresses her disapproval of this plan. A teenager doesn't know which university to enter. He/she is discussing his/her plans with his/her mother. They discuss a) different alternatives; b) advantages and disadvantages of leaving the home town. The mother leaves the final decision to her son (daughter). A daughter who is a student at the university announces that she 1) is considering the idea of giving up her studies; 2) wants to find a part-time job to earn some pocket money. Her mother strongly objects to this idea.

Role-play the situation.


You are a psychotherapist. You are receiving people, both parents and children, who have various family problems. They ask you different questions.

You are expected to analyse the possible conflicts, work out some ways of solving the problem or give some professional advice.


Speaker 1. My parents are always saying that I cannot do anything right, I’m stupid, lazy, ugly and no good. They never listen to what I have to say. As a result I’m very shy and insecure.

Speaker 2. I dropped out of the university because it was too hard for me to study there. Now I feel guilty as if I’d let my family down. I have not told my family yet. I’m afraid they won’t approve of it.

Speaker 3. My mother never really cared about us, she was so cold and indifferent. Our father always let us do what we wanted. Then they broke up. They had endless rows over money almost every day. I hated to hear them yell at each other.

Speaker 4. Both my parents disapprove of my fiancé, because he’s 10 years older than I. We are going to get married but my mother threatens she will break up with it.

Speaker 5. I don’t like James to play with Paul next door. Paul uses very bad language and James will pick it up. But Paul is James’s best friend. How can I prevent James from seeing Paul every day?

Speaker 6. My 30-year-old brother lives at home with our mother, who doesn’t seem to see how being a mother’s boy is ruining his life. I dread to think what will happen to him. I've encouraged him to make a life for himself but I know he’ll just stay where he is while she makes his life so comfortable.





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