Being a parent is one of the most rewarding and challenging jobs around. Our parenting has changed over the years, that’s for sure. We have tried new things and we have read lots of books. I happen to have a 24 year old son who is a millennial. I also have an 11 year old daughter who is my test subject daily.
I have been a mom more of my life than not. I have always loved both of my children with all of my heart. Everything I did or didn’t do for them came from a place of love (sometimes fear). An example of this would be waking my kids up for school. My son hated school, so this morning routine was not fun. I actually dreaded waking him up in the mornings. I thought this is what parents do! If you love your kids, your there for them and you do things for them. (Partly my own drama from my childhood)
The thing I’m learning now is that sometimes without even knowing it, I was crippling his future. Me doing things for my kids was partly for them, and it was partly for me. I loved to feel needed, and I love to swoop in with all the answers and save the day! That’s what good moms do, right? They create an easy path for their kids. They support them and they love them and they worship the ground they walk on.
I volunteered for everything just so I could be near him. Every Friday night I served him dinner at the school before his football games. I even volunteered in the high school office. I loved the staff and kids, but not the parents (I will not be doing this when my daughter gets to high school). If he forgot something at home I would run to the school and deliver it. Do any of these things sound like an unloving parent? Do they sound like an abusive or neglectful parent? I think not! When I look back now, I see the error in my ways. I stand corrected and more knowledgeable on the subject.
You see what my son really needed from me was to teach him how to be independent. To do things on his own. Even though I wanted to help and I loved him with all of my heart, my actions screamed, “you need me to figure things out!” “You need me to make choices for you.” “You need me to fix everything.” I inadvertently shot myself in the foot.
Your kids need to make mistakes. They need to learn to deal with the their emotions while they are young, or when they get older they will not have these skills. We are so into making our kids lives perfect that we are sabotaging their futures. Life is not easy and it’s not all fun and games. Emotions are temporary, they don’t last forever. Tomorrow you will feel differently than you do right now.
If your kid forgets their homework, that’s their problem to deal with. Do not, under any circumstances, take that homework to school for them! But why you ask? Because if you save the day once you will save it again, and what message does that teach your kid? It says hey, every time you forget something, I will bring it to you. You don’t need to responsible for yourself because that’s my job. As a matter of fact, your so incapable of being responsible that I will take care of everything because I’m more responsible anyways!
This is one of those things I didn’t know I didn’t know! There’s no denying that millinials have a bad rap. But the next time you want to judge them, I’m thinking you should take a long hard look at their parents and see what role they had to play in this. These kids didn’t just end up like this. No no no! The parenting changed and the results are in, don’t handicap your kid because of your own issues and dramas that are unhealed.
Here’s to the next generation of parenting old school style. I will be the first to admit I struggle with this daily. After all, I have been doing it for over twenty years. Parents, if you can work on yourself and examine your own beliefs, then that will be the best gift of all!
Your kids can help you heal what’s broken inside you if you can get rid of your ego and your old belief systems!
Carry on my friends, you got this and some cake😜
Tavia Hayduk. 937-210-2306