Tag Archive | parenting

Tough Love


Tough Love is an expression used when someone treats another person harshly or sternly because they love them, and want to help them be successful in the future. Being tough on those you love is difficult, but in our family it’s always been a normal part of raising our children.

I think we as parents all know how this works, although when you look at some of the parent and teen relationships today, I don’t think the “parents” get it!  Now don’t get me wrong, parenting kids today is alot more challenging than it was years before. But I think there are several factors that come into play.

1. Kids need 2 parents. I’m a firm believer in a traditional family, with 2 parents.  Amen for those single parents raising children, but having all the discipline responsibility on one parent is not easy. After a long hard day at work, choosing your battles sounds practical, but many times important battles are let go that need to be addressed. Our children are winning the battle, and parental disrespect is reeking havoc!

2. No consequences. Many parents have a great plan for discipline, but they don’t follow through, and there are no consequences. Watching our kids live through the consequence is what’s so tough for us as parents. We have to remember, it’s not about us. Consequences enable us to teach. When there’s no consequence, there’s no learning.

3. Authority. “Children today have no respect for authority.” You hear it time and time again, but it starts in the home. If children don’t respect and obey their parents, they’ll have no regard for authority outside of the home.

There are some tough lessons along the way, particularly when your trying to teach your adult children to be on their own, and take more responsibility for themselves. It’s hard to see them struggle, but it’s necessary. Think how difficult it must be for a Momma bird to watch her young bird learn how to fly. If he doesn’t fall, he won’t learn what it takes to fly, and if he doesn’t learn to fly quickly, he won’t survive.

I love my little birds, and I intend for them to soar!!





Adult Conversation

5841008-close-up-side-view-of-a-young-woman-wearing-a-sun-hat-and-texting-on-her-cell-phone-horizontal-formaThis was the first 4th of July that we had no kids. It was a quiet 4th, but I had conversations with both my kids throughout the day.

Conversation is the glue between people, the essential element in a strong relationship. Many parents fall into the trap of thinking that in a conversation with their children, it is their job to talk and their children’s job to listen. Actually, conversation is a mutual effort of talking and listening.

The teenage brain is actually different from the adult brain. In teens, the prefrontal cortex — the area of the brain involved in decision-making, planning, social interaction and self-awareness — is still developing, making teens more prone to both risk-taking and embarrassment. I guess my children’s prefrontal cortex is becoming more mature.

In the last few months, conversations with my children have evolved. Maybe it’s because they’re not always home now, or maybe they feel more confident having a conversation through texting. In any case, the conversation has become “Adult Conversation.” Conversations about life, initiated by them.

I guess you could consider “whether or not to get a tattoo” an adult conversation. Or “why you decided to skip your summer jazz class today” an adult conversation.

Maybe texting camouflages the fact that I’m their mother, but what I really think is happening, is that my children have developed a comfort of coming to me for “life advice.” I think I have evolved as well. I realize that my children are no longer kids. They have their own feelings, thoughts, and opinions that need to be respected, regardless of what I think. I listen instead of lecture, I try not to judge, I let them develop their own solutions even if I don’t agree, I don’t monopolize the conversation, I’m honest, I praise them, and I ask them what they would say to their own children.

They’re still naive about life, but then again, aren’t we all?. . . that’s why parenting never ends.

(Courtesy of http://science.howstuffworks.com/life/teenage-brain1.htm)

You know you’re not failing as a mom when…

As many of you know, being a parent is the hardest thing you’ll ever do. There are no instructions, and you constantly second guess yourself. You wonder if what you say to your kids ever sticks, or whether you might as well be talkin’ to the wall!  It makes you wonder sometimes if you’re failing.

When my daughter was growing up, I used to be afraid that:

  • She  would choose the wrong friends
  • Her church foundation wouldn’t stick
  • Not listening to my advice was grounds for her failure
  • Our non-discussion about boys would yield a bad crop

I just sent my 18-year-old daughter off to college this month. I miss her dearly (even if she’s only 17 miles away). Most of my “daughter fears” are now gone. Seeing her blossom into the strong, beautiful woman she has become has freed me of my fears.

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