As it is Mother’s day I thought I would write an extra blog on the subject of parenting young people.
We love our children more than anything else in the world. We want the best for them, we don’t want them to feel pain. We want them to be a success in life whilst avoiding the failures and setbacks we experienced.
Every time we try to steer them in the right direction, every time we pass on our experience, we get ignored or told to stop interfering. ‘What do you know?’ ‘Its’ not like that nowadays.’ ‘You don’t understand the pressure I am under.’
You know what? They are right. We have not got a clue what it is like being a teenager. The only time you know what it is like being a teenager is when you are a teenager. We think we remember what it was like being a teenager, but most of that memory is not accurate, and most of our experience is long forgotten.
How do you feel when someone tells you how to live you life?
Teenagers and young adults are biologically hard-wired to want to take risks and push boundaries, to start laying foundations for their adult life. They are supposed to not listen to you and try it themselves.
Now this is a big shift in how you are expected to be as a parent. You have spent the first decade and a half protecting you children. Keeping them close, providing them with exciting and new experiences to make them a well-rounded individual. Spending hours watching them at Judo, Karate, Street Dancing and countless other classes. Hours cheering them on playing Football, Rugby, and Netball. Not anymore. They now seem to resent your helpful cheers and technical sporting advice. This is heartbreaking, you think they don’t need you anymore. You are so wrong. They need you more than ever, you just need to change your approach.
The time of passing on advice and being directive have gone. The time has come to listen to what they say, to show support and interest without being overwhelming. Most importantly you need to be there right behind them for when they fall. Not to catch them but to pick them up and encourage them to try again.
It is so hard watching the one you love make mistakes, and feel pain, but so important. If you think back to all your failures and knockbacks. That is where you created your resolve.
Giving your children the space to grow, is so much harder than it seems, but is worth the heartache.
If you are struggling and want to talk further email me;