Why is it sometimes, that as a parent of a teenager— we feel like we have to walk on eggshells? Some of you may say….”WelI, I don’t!”
But as we are raising our children, I believe that we are learning together —with them. Especially if it is our first time to experience our teenagers’ heartaches, disappointments, and failures. I once read…
“You are only as happy as your saddest child.”
I paused for a moment when I encountered this saying. I had to understand, why is it that we feel this way as mothers?
And more so, if you are one of those who tries very hard to ease your child’s pain.
Do you find yourself in a rut when your child hurts?
Or do you leave it be, to have your child learn and figure it out?
I’ve always wanted to fix my children’s problems.
Sometimes my child feels overwhelmed by me. I know it isn’t right. So I’ve changed. Because by doing this- I am only diservicing my children.
I need to give them enough space to learn on their own.
Allowing them to be responsible in their decisions is part of the process. Learning how to deal with their own feelings is also a process.
But as a mother, I think we can guide them by giving pointers. I may sound like a broken record to them, but I do know the importance of pounding them with wisdom.
You may think they are not absorbing it, but trust me when I tell you, it’s like a hard drive in their brains.
They will download that information when needed. Hearing it, processing it, and applying it — are three different things. Three different stages. It is an effective method for them to have stored these lessons so they could just retrieve it when the scenario calls for it.
They need to know that, they can always come to us with their problems. There is nothing too big or too small for us- to handle together.
I love this saying….
“We may not have it all together….but together we have it all.”
We will listen and we will comfort. We will advise and we will guide. If they just let us be. I often tell my kids….
“I am the most important, best friend, you’ll ever have.”
And I add…
Because as your mother, I will always set you straight. Right or wrong…you will hear the truth. And it’s all for your best interest, you just need to trust.”
When you are confronted with your teenager and tells you that she/he does not want to be embraced or kissed in front of her/his friends, or doesn’t want to be dropped off in front of the school, or doesn’t want to be seen with you in public….so on and so forth….
You just need to explain that it is understandable – it is a stage in their lives and they are validated!
And for whatever it is that they are going through—you are feeling it too.
Your child might question you… “Didn’t you experience being a teenager as well?”
Your response should be, “Oh yes I have, but these days and times are much, much different when I was growing up.” I believe that explaining to our kids the differences in childhood experiences is key.
The learning is never ending. I tell my kids…”This is my obligation to God and my obligation as a mother—- to make sure that I guide you and protect you.”
I am going through it together with them but with more wisdom. And that is my advantage!
As my mother would tell me, “Been there, done that.”
If you have more than one child, you will know that it’s never…. a “one size fits all” approach.
Here is a letter I wrote that may help you with your own teenager ❤️
A Letter For My Son:
I want you to know that as your mother, I am going through the same experiences you are going through.
I’ve never been a mother to any other 15 year old boy.
You are my first experience. I am learning and growing with you. But the advantage I have as your mother is that—- I have wisdom.
Wisdom only comes with years of existence. Life teaches you that.
So you, on the other hand have only lived 15 years of your life. Yes, I was a teenager once, but today’s times are more complicated for kids – today’s kids are analytical (interpretative) and pressured. It is what it is.
But I cannot be walking on eggshells. I deserve to feel respected as the person who has and continues to raise you. You have to understand that— it is my obligation that I live and I act this way.
I would not be doing my job in the eyes of God, if I did not exert myself as a mom – the only way I know how…..and remember ….because of the unconditional love I have for you …. my words and actions will never come from a place of hurt…. always remember that.
Everything I do comes from a place of Love.
Again, we are going through this together.