Parents

Occasionally, but not infrequently,  I receive the call from the parent who is seeking help for their teen or young adult son or daughter, only to have them come to realize that they as parents need help themselves.

I am a parent myself. I live this inside and out. If you are like me, you love them more than anything else in the world. You would give your life for them. They can also be the most demanding, challenging, complicated, royal pain in the butts you ever encounter. I am reminded of Bill Cosby’s story about a line his father said to him once, “I brought you into this world and I can sure take you out!Most parents have had these moments – especially in parenting teens!

If you are in this predicament AND you are reading my website, it probably means that you:

  • Are serious about raising your son or daughter to be the best person they can be
  • Value their growth into moral, ethically conscious young adults even more than you value their success in other areas of life
  • Refuse to give up and give in like many of their peer’s parents do, based on your sense of “right and wrong”
  • View being “the cool permissive parent” to be a compromise and ultimately, failure
  • Know that raising them right is more important than being right, and are frustrated by how hard this is
Here’s the dilemma:
Parenting a teen or young adult demands tremendous skill and intention. It must be done strategically and requires daily, even hourly, updating. Yet most parents have little to no training whatsoever in how to do this.

Some simply default to just being their teen’s friend.

Often they do this because they don’t want to deal with the conflict that is inherent with parenting them. Some do it because they themselves are still adolescents, hence it is beyond their capacity to take their kids further. Whatever the reason – this is horrible parenting. Let me leave it at that.

Others default to parenting via many rules, even to the point of establishing ongoing written contracts with their teens.

Typically parents who are “overly rule oriented”  are parenting from a position of fear –  a fear that without the rules and order, they won’t be able to manage what comes up with their kids. This is the example of the “control freak” who must be in control at all times. They are annoying to be around, and even worse to live with.

Contracts are okay if it is being done to establish a point or to create a “grown-up” experience. They are a huge mistake for anything else. Most teens are quick to point out how the language in the contract didn’t cover certain situations, etc, finding loop holes and using it against their parents. Contracts also bind parents to the position they held when they created the contract, removing the freedom to have the flexibility to change their mind or change  their policy, a flexibility that is vital to parenting effectively.

 

Many parents fall into the pattern of continual power struggles, arguing, punishing and policing. They hate it but can’t seem to break out of it.

This is the most common dilemma, and the most easily resolved.

Parents stuck in other categories, typically are  most concerned about BEHAVIOR, not about what has to be true on the inside for their teen to be exhibiting that behavior. In other words, if their kid just started following the rules, getting the grades, etc, that would be enough.

For the parents in this last category though, what concerns them more than anything else is the attitude, self-image, values, and life orientation their kids adopt.If this is you, then you probably have a parenting philosophy that goes “If I succeed in raising my son or daughter to have the right attitude, work ethic, character, morals, etc, they will be fine no matter what challenges they face.”

Parents like you are the ones I typically work with very well. You are stuck in a pattern that is not making anyone in the home happy, but you love your kids, your intentions and values are totally alligned and in the right place – you need help getting unstuck.

I can help you. Whether it is as small as wanting help sorting through how to hand a delicate situation, or as complex as needing to reform the foundation of your relationship. You are in the right place.

I can teach you the skills, pacing, updating, strategies, etc that will reshape and reform the whole relationship you have with your teen. This will help you build a healthy, positive, mutually respectful foundation for your relationship.

I can help you come up with new policies, expectations, responsibilities and privileges that will work well for all. This will make your teen far more likely to include you at the top of the list of who they turn to when they need help and guidance.

I can help you establish a legitimate adult-young adult relationship, the kind your teen or young adult sons or daughters really need in their lives. This will help ensure they build healthy relationships for themselves in their personal lives.

Remember, they will always be your son and daughter, but they won’t always be your child. Do this now, so that you have a thriving relationship then!

Contact Jeff to learn more.

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