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After three years, my dad finally accepts that i have a motorbike...

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by ad91on, Oct 8, 2011.

  1. I first got a motorbike when i was 17. I had the urge, so i went and did it. I passed my l's no worries, and went and picked up my first bike, my beastly Sachs Express (150cc) and bam, i was a motorcyclist. I passed my p's no worries, sold my bike to fund an overseas trip and lost my license for a year soon after. I bought another motorbike within a week of getting my license back, my fine Suzuki Across which served me well for a few completely hassle free thousand kilometres. So ingrained in my life did riding a motorbike become that it was no longer something i just did, i became quite nearly physiologically dependant on it. I needed my fix.

    I needed a bigger fix, so I went out and few months later and bought my VFR. I sold the across a little while later, and recently bought a Sachs Madass as a project. I spend a significant portion of my brain power thinking about riding and motorbikes and cornering technique and the speed and sound of the things, the look, the attention, the passion of the whole damn activity. The conversations it's started, the great times i've had on a motorbike, the stories i have to tell and the fantastic feeling of freedom I get when i've got a wide open throttle and a ridiculous grin on my face, or a furrowed brow as i find out how close to the ground i can get around the next corner without falling.

    I would say i've been riding for 3 years. I say that because my year without a license was taken up with thinking about riding motorbikes, and when i jumped back on one it felt like not a minute has passed since my last ride. I am more and more engaged with my passion every day, to the point where it is a defining point of who and what i am, that when someone meets me they soon find out that i am a motorcyclist and that I take great pride in being a member of such a subculture.

    This brings me to my point, and to why i have put this in the new riders forum.

    My dad doesn't like motorbikes. When i first broached the topic of getting a motorbike with him, he didn't talk to me for a week. When he did next, it was over a one on one dinner, and it was like he was having an intervention. He's an older guy, and he explained how he wants to watch me grow up and live safely and happily and etc. There were tears, and i felt sufficiently bad to say i wouldn't get a motorbike.

    The next day, i booked my l's test... Lucky for me, being a child of divorce, i live with my mum and she has a bike, so she can't say no. So i successfully spent my first year of riding without my dad knowing about the bike. He knew i was interested, obviously, but there was no confirmation of me ever having owned a bike.

    I lost my license, as mentioned, and when i got it back i got a bike again... Without him knowing. One night, i was feeling shitty, so i took myself off for a long ride (in the pouring rain, and cold, mind you) and mum was worried enough to call up dad and tell him that i was out riding my motorbike in the rain and was probably going to die...

    ... I didn't die. But a couple of weeks later, dad sit's me down over a cup of coffee and straight up says "so why didn't you tell me you have a motorbike?"
    I explained that i know he didn't like them, and that it was my decision and i minimize the risks as much as i can and i've had all the relevant training and it's only a 250 and how i love it and how it's not going to go away. He concedes that i shouldn't ride it every day, but only as a play thing. I was making progress.

    He goes overseas, comes back to find that i have two new motorbikes... He wasn't too happy. Especially since i'd said i was going to get ride of them to my half-brothers (dad's sons, who report to him) just to shut them up. He is noticeably bothered by the fact i now ride a 400. So i explain to him that it's not a choice in my life anymore - it's just a part of who i am. I likened my decision to ride to someone's decision to be gay - you can't just change it. I explained that i love it, and it's fantastic, and i know the risks and i've seen the consequences and finished by telling him that it's not going to go away.

    Dad's mind seems to be working over while i tell him all this. He finally concludes: "well, you're old enough to make your own decisions...". victory at last. After 3 years of tension over it.

    I post this up here for all of you new and prospective riders who have family who disagree with your decision. I spent a lot of time agonizing over the whole dad and motorbike thing, especially as i work in the family business. There was the risk that i could lose my job and my car if he was pissed off enough about it (which would leave me with just the bike!). But i stuck to my guns; admittedly, i lied several times about selling the bike and the existence of it, but i couldn't hide it any longer. I simply have too much petrol in my veins to deny my rev-headdedness any longer.

    I hope that this can help anyone who is having issues with their family regarding motorcycling. In time, even if your family do accept it, you will still get lectured, but you will learn to grin and bear it, just like when you're riding and you get pissed down on...
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Good stuff.

    Motorcycling is, I think, like smoking.
    The urge is always there no matter how long since you last rode.

    In my case its been 15 years,,, ish. What happened to me? Long term relatrionship followed by marriage and a very non-understanding missus.

    Anyway we (very) recently separated and the FIRST thing this led me to think about was "I can get a bike again".

    So once I sort out somewhere to live (gotta sell the house etc) its the next thing on the agenda.

    Don't let others tell you how to live your life - you only get one shot at it so enjoy it while you can !

  3. Good post.

    I didn't really have these issues - my Dad rides a motorcycle and my mum's attitude is, it's my choice what I do with my life.
  4. ^ Same.

    Only thing I get from my parents is to wear the correct gear.
  5. I never had any issues with any of my Family being against it. I know my mum would prefer I drove a car but she won't ask me to stop.

    I do, however, have to endure their warped beige-tinted view on road safety and staunch beliefs in the 'speed kills' mantra.
  6. I'm 52 & my mother still doesn't know that I ride & started around 30 years ago!
    My uncle was killed on a bike & she is just so dead against them.
    She's always been a great worrier & there is only the two of us out here. (Rest of her family is in England)
  7. #7 Mr Messy, Oct 9, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2015
    You likened being gay by way of reference? Now i know why he accepted motorcycling.

    • Like Like x 1
  8. My parents still don't acknowledge that I ride. Mum found out when she came for a visit and found my helmet on the kitchen table... That was over a year ago and I didn't have the heart to tell her that I have a "hooligan deathtrap" (her words) to go along with the helmet.
    Every convo with my grandma starts with the question "you aren't calling me from the hospital are you?" but now I think she does it just so she can call my mum and tell her that I am still alive and kicking.

    I intend to scare the poo out of my mum with the big reveal next time she is up by having my mates shiny new Bonneville parked in the garage and claiming that it is mine... then getting my mate to ride mine over and show her that it could always be worse and isn't it lucky I only spent $1500 on mine. Kinda like telling her my girlfriend was pregnant then telling her it was ok and we were just moving in together. I find shocking revelations are much less shocking after presenting the worst case alternatives to the news you are giving. :)
    • Like Like x 1
  9. I feel exceptionally lucky I have the sort of relationship with my parents where I do what I want and it's my choice and I don't feel I have to hide it from them. Saying that, living on your own from 15 sort of does that too you.

    But saying that the thing my dad first said was 'is it loud and quick?'... I properly laughed!
    Though they do also go on about wearing the right gear of course
  10. #10 nobby, Oct 9, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2015
    Either way Messy we cop it in the arse either way!!
  11. I hear you mate hahaha!
  12. I always wanted to ride a motorbike since I was a little 11 year old girl. My parents don't know yet - they are away and will be heading back home in a few weeks. Not sure how they will react but you know what - As a buddy of mine who has passed away told me - "Life is short so live your dream - be who you are supposed to be and find the pieces that make your identity whole, it's your life, to be lived by you, so live it."
  13. i've copped no grief from the parents apart from a be careful...my grandma how-ever - being old and ever so caring does tend to worry, i think my saving grace is my confidence with riding and explaining my riding to her...in saying that i've just moved in to her house with my fiance' to become her full-time carer...and since found out the reason behind her fear of me having an accident (especially as i previously rode into the city from penrith for work daily)....her and my grandfather a good 25-30 years back witnessed a motorcyclist being hit by a small truck to memory...then explained how she saw the helmet roll off and being back then and no-one thinking anything of it a person going to aide of the rider had sat him up only to realise he had been decapitated....the head was still in the helmet that had rolled a metre or two away...and she explained that she had nightmares about it for weeks afterwards...

    back to the point though...ty to OP for this thread...i'm sure it will give new rider's hope for the acceptance of their loved ones and perhaps a few pointer's with both the original post and the following reply's of some hint's that might be adaptable to said new rider's situation.
  14. I have two uncles who have been riding bikes for decades, however one stopped because he shattered his knee/leg on a garbage truck.

    The other has broken practically every bone in his body, but this was combined with mountain biking (jumping 15 feet off rocks and what have you).

    His mountain bike costs more than my motorbike in fact.

    So they were cool with it, but my grandparents, sister and parents weren't.

    I covertly got my L's and bought my motorcycle before anyone in my family knew.

    Grandparents are seriously unimpressed, my sister says there is no point trying to convince me not to ride (I'm a rock or something?). I'm "beyond help".
  15. Good read mate. Sadly i don't think my dad is ever going to be supportive of me riding bike ever. Every mention of it leads to a argument. My mum has been very supportive, accompanying me when i've been gear shopping or looking at bikes & realises it is something i very much want to do. My dad won't have a word of it going as far to say if i injured myself on "my" bike that he would get rid of it.
  16. cool story bro.

    I booked my L's without telling either of my parents.. I may have told my dad but i can't remember.

    Then i pass the L's, and get a cb250. Mum sees it in the garage and freaks out. Next thing I know my grandfather is over giving me this huge lecture etc etc.

    I don't know if my dad likes it, but he accepts it. Probably in the back of their mind theyre worried every time I take it out for a ride - - - or i can just stay at home, live in a shell and spend 18 hours a day on the computer.

    I've made some good friends from it, and ive also been able to strike up convos with others i meet randomly who ride. Also, i'm waiting in the line at costco with the jacket on and people just come up and talk to me about riding.. that doesnt happen to cagers.
  17. Just remember not to take it the wrong way form your parents.
    They love you and they are scared you will be hurt.
    Any good parent would be.
    Buy your dad a slab and sit and drink it with him. Talk!
    He may be a parent but he is still a boy at heart.
  18. How do you fit the 5 million rolls of bog paper everyone seems to buy at Costco on your bike? :?:
  19. Good read!

    I told my Dad after I got my L's and bike. I did it at a family lunch when my brother was in the loo. Told Dad very quickly and we agreed telling my brother was a bad idea as he has always wanted to ride too but as he is reckless and thinks he is invincible best not to mention it.

    My Mum used to ride when she was young and my uncle (her brother) used to ride/race which is how he met his end.

    A few weeks on Dad called me up and said, 'So, why did you get a bike?' We had a long conversation about the dangers, what protective gear I have, how he knows I'm sensible but he is more worried about others around me and about what further training I can do to become a better rider. I know he doesn't like it but he accepts I'm an adult and understand the risks. He is now asking me what bike stuff do I need for Christmas. :D
  20. oh cams, big bore kit, racing exhaust, money to port the heads, flatslide carbies...