Skip to main content

Time for a new game plan

No matter how you look at it, good parenting is a challenge (bad parenting is easy....).  You have a million opinions on how to raise one kid, what works for that kid doesn't work for another, and you don't really have any idea how things will turn out for decades.

The challenge Dear Husband and I are facing now is parenting older teens.  We've got one starting his second year of college (he's living away from home) and one starting his freshman year at college - living at home.  The rules just changed.

Eldest Son is making a lot of choices that we know are bad.  We know they are going to have deep and severe consequences, and that the choices are going to be regrettable.  He doesn't see it that way.  I don't want every conversation to turn into a fight, so finding some balance of admonishment and empathy is proving to be very difficult. 

Tallest Son is choosing to live at home as he starts college.  Fine with  us - we love having him around.  However, he's sort of an adult, sort of a kid.....how to parent him?  It doesn't seem fair to track his every move - if he were living in a dorm, we wouldn't do that.  However, since he's home, it's only fair for him to let us know his plans.  Plus, he's living rent-free, so he's got chores and responsibilities to take care of, and I still have to nag.  We had a conversation yesterday about this new playing field we find ourselves on, and we're all still trying to negotiate it.

The key, it seems, is like a lot of things in life:  listening.  I have to listen to them, they have to listen to me, and then we have to make our own decisions.  I also want my kids to know that I'm navigating this new territory right along with them:  I don't have it nailed down, and we need to work together.

I'll let you know how it all turns out.  Probably ten years from now......

Comments

  1. It would be handy if each child came with separate instructions on how to operate him, wouldn't it? :^)=) My prayers for you and DH as you work your way through this time.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

I love comments, even if you don't agree, but please don't leave anonymous posts. A well-mannered reader leaves a name!

Popular posts from this blog

Trying to "end run" God

If you're a football fan, you know what an end run is. From Merriam-Webster:
a football play in which the ballcarrier attempts to run wide around the end of the line We try to "end run" God a lot. I do. I figure I know better. I've got this - no need to worry the Big Guy about such a trivial thing.

Of course, it never works.

Like the puppy above, when we try and evade the tough obstacle (even though we KNOW we will eventually have to do it), we end up - well, off in the bushes.

But oh! How I wished my way worked. I'd love to take a flying leap and land smoothly and gracefully. People would be in awe, as if watching Simone Biles nail a balance beam routine that no one else would even attempt. I would shyly look down and blush - just lightly - and acknowledge (But humbly! Oh so humbly!) my achievement.

But no: I am the one pulling myself out of the bushes, scratches all over my legs and twigs in my hair. I'd hear that gentle but loving voice of God saying, &quo…

Be Transfigured

From today's readings: 

Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother, John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the and his clothes became white as light.

...we possess the prophetic message that is altogether reliable. You will do well to be attentive to it as to a lamp shining in a dark place until day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.

Today we celebrate the Transfiguration. For whatever reason, Jesus brought three of His disciples to Mount Tabor to witness this miracle. They weren't sure what they were seeing, but they knew enough to throw themselves to the ground in the presence of Almighty God. St. Peter (who never did anything halfway) excitedly declares that he will erect tents on the mountain as a way of memorializing the event. But Jesus tells him and the others that they are not to tell people what they witnessed - at least not yet.

In the second reading, the requirement to be quiet has bee…

Be Brave

A few years ago, it came to my attention that a young family member was struggling with anxiety and depression. I was able to share with her a bit of my own struggles, and let her know she wasn't alone.

A few weeks after our talk, I saw the movie, "Brave." It struck me that the young protagonist, Merida, modeled a great quality. She was indeed brave.

Being brave is not about recklessness. It is not about confidence. It's not about being foolish, or looking for glory in the eyes of others.

Bravery is about doing what is right, even when you are a quivering mess. It's about knowing that things may not turn out the way you expected, but forging ahead anyway. Being brave is standing by the hospital bed while a loved one is dying, and all you really want to do is turn back time. Bravery is standing up to a bully, when your legs are screaming for you to run. Brave is doing what needs to be done even when you're scared and tired and feeling helpless and hopeless.

I …