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Home » CHFWeb Libraries » Titus Two Library » parenting toughy  (5) 1 Vote(s)
parenting toughy [message #659958] Mon, 25 October 2010 07:45 Go to next message
~Janice  is currently offline ~Janice
Messages: 8308
Registered: April 2005
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For me at least one of the toughest parenting times is when my children are sad, broken-hearted, disappointed, lonely, dejected, and any other situation along those lines. I have a hard time not going there with them - and maybe I should be?? Empathy? Yet we need to separate in order to help them have the Godly perspective. This is tougher with older, grown children. Not as easy to move them along and out of it. Any thoughts?


TAKE TIME FOR FRIENDS!

Janice T. ~ CHF member since 09/97 ~
Mom to four - ds 28, dd 26, dd 24 and ds 21 - and wife to my sweet husband Richard.
Re: parenting toughy [message #659965 is a reply to message #659958 ] Mon, 25 October 2010 08:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Tracy in Peru  is currently offline Tracy in Peru
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Registered: April 2005
Location: Trujillo, Peru
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Yes, that is always a rough one, but I don't think empathy is the answer. Sometimes we need to someone to say "Snap out of it!". I think the answer is though they may "feel" one way, and certainly are entitled to their feelings, they need to gather themselves and not allow it to affect other family members (like slacking on chores) or their work/health in general. A good wallow in self-pity every now and then is nothing but self compassion. But if it extends too far, they need to do something, or perhaps if they are unable to help themselves, then you need to step in.

Look at it from the standpoint of what would you do for a good friend. Would you make a dinner to take over to her to help out a bit? Or would you say "Enough!" and pack her up and take her to the doctor?


In Him--Tracy
Re: parenting toughy [message #659970 is a reply to message #659958 ] Mon, 25 October 2010 08:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lisa R.  is currently offline Lisa R.
Messages: 14916
Registered: April 2005
Location: Georgia
Senior Member

What Tracy said. Offer them compassion, a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on. Offer them time for an extra nap or some quiet time to reflect or pray or whatever they need. All that part depends on what is going on and how much TLC they need to address their feelings.

And if they're having trouble snapping out of it, kind, but firm is a good policy. Remind them that grief (or whatever it is) is a part of life, and we do need to deal with it, but life goes on and it's time to get back in the game. I'd still be available to talk, but I'd work on "compartmentalizing" it a bit more, if possible. Let's get school and chores done, and we'll take a break this afternoon for tea, if you want to talk for a while then." (Okay, we never "have tea," but it sounds good! Smile The concept is the same.)

That's basically what we do. Actually, it's what I do for myself as well.


Blessings,
Lisa R.
Re: parenting toughy [message #659972 is a reply to message #659958 ] Mon, 25 October 2010 08:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Tamara Eaton
Messages: 4955
Registered: April 2005
Location: South
Senior Member
I'm going to try to be tactful in the way I share this since this is a public forum. (And of COURSE I'm not talking about any of the six grown sons or daughters anyone reading this might actually know...it's one of their unknown siblings. Wink)

There have been times a grown child has chosen to ride a roller coaster. I don't like roller coasters. I choose NOT to go on them myself and I don't like to ride along with others either. But when it's your child, you sometimes feel tempted to ride along just to keep him company, you know? But it really doesn't help anyone.

What helps the most is to stay stable, peaceful, full of faith and with the expectation that the LORD will deliver this child safely and can be trusted to take care of this child every step (or curve Smile ) of the way.

This really isn't a lack of sympathy, but wisdom, because from this safe, stable vantage point (you know, seated in the heavenlies with Christ Jesus!) we can pray fervently and not allow the enemy to gain access into our own lives, robbing us from the joy of the Lord, which is our strength, and keeping us distracted from what the Lord has for us to do.

Some of my grown children don't like roller coasters either and have made choices to avoid them by staying close to the Lord and allowing Him to help them rule their emotions, etc., Their stability has been refreshing to me as a parent.

But God has used the roller coaster riders to mature me in ways I never would have chosen and as a result, I really am stronger and able to encourage other parents whose children have chosen that lifestyle, however temporarily. Smile

This is all fresh in my mind, btw, because I had news this weekend that could have taken me on a new ride, had I chosen to go. But I was reminded again of the waste of time and energy and how much better off we would all be if I stayed stable and prayed fervently! And God is faithful. I continue to trust in Him!

Praying for you and any roller coaster riders you might have right now, too!

With love and hugs,
Tamara


Blessings,
Tamara

"There is always enough time to do the will of God. Don't Waste Your Life!"
Re: parenting toughy [message #659977 is a reply to message #659958 ] Mon, 25 October 2010 09:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Tamara Eaton
Messages: 4955
Registered: April 2005
Location: South
Senior Member
I just read the responses from Tracy and Lisa and I agree with them!

My response, in reading back over it, might sound a little more distant because I was approaching the topic more from the point of not getting bogged down and distracted by a grown child's poor choices, or one who was reaping the consequences of a poor choice.

I didn't address the things you would do to minister to them besides fervent prayer on their behalf.

Obviously, that's where the leading of the Holy Spirit comes in, and there will be times you are able to plant words of encouragement, and give practical help, too. Especially if they still live with you!

[Updated on: Mon, 25 October 2010 09:03]


Blessings,
Tamara

"There is always enough time to do the will of God. Don't Waste Your Life!"
Re: parenting toughy [message #659999 is a reply to message #659972 ] Mon, 25 October 2010 10:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lisa R.  is currently offline Lisa R.
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Registered: April 2005
Location: Georgia
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Tamara, your comments about the roller coaster really ministered to me this morning. They gave me fresh perspective on a situation I'm in the midst of myself. Funny how God so often uses completely unrelated things to pull together to teach a lesson!


Blessings,
Lisa R.
Re: parenting toughy [message #660030 is a reply to message #659958 ] Mon, 25 October 2010 12:06 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Tonja L.  is currently offline Tonja L.
Messages: 724
Registered: April 2005
Location: Beautiful Arkansas
Senior Member
I agree with Lisa, Tracy, and Tamara! Great advice from all 3.

The family/home is training ground for the *real world*.

Model appropriate responses to life's difficulties.
Instill in children that attitude is the key. (What's the saying,...attitude is 90%, circumstance 10%.)
We choose how we will respond to *things*. Life is tough - we can choose to let it run over us, or we can choose to get up, go on, and make the best of it.
Instill in children an overcoming spirit/attitude of blessing and thanksgving. Teach them to get up (quickly) when knocked down and to proceed with a joyful spirit. Teach them to choose happiness.


Growing in Gods' Grace and Truth,
Tonja
Re: parenting toughy [message #660182 is a reply to message #659958 ] Tue, 26 October 2010 10:14 Go to previous messageGo to next message
janetR  is currently offline janetR
Messages: 1937
Registered: March 2010
Location: TX
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I agree with all the responses here, but I identify most with Tamara's response. One of my olders went through a severe depression in her preteen years, and I rode the roller coaster with her. After a couple years, God showed me that I couldn't help her the way He wanted me to if I let her sadness make me sad. I needed to model joy for her. Our relationship was changing. Before, I had felt responsible to provide the environment that would build happiness in her life. Now I realized she needed to take more responsibility for that. While I still needed to make sure she got the medical care she needed and the counseling she needed, whether from me, other godly adults, or a trained counselor, only she could decide whether to get out of bed in the morning and do what she needed to do not only to fulfill her responsibilities but to take care of herself. My over-empathy made it difficult to hold her responsible for the decisions she made. Empathy is usually easy for a mom. Holding their toes to the fire when your toes feel the heat too is a lot harder.
I feel that communicating clearly is crucial so that they see that the decisions you make don't mean that you don't feel their pain. Cry with them. Let them sound off to you. But once God shows you where to stand, stand firm.


JanetR
daughter of the King since 1980
wife to dh since 1981
mom to five of the most incredible adults on the planet, one wonderful 18yo, and grandma to two bouncy grandsons
Re: parenting toughy [message #660201 is a reply to message #660182 ] Tue, 26 October 2010 14:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
~Janice  is currently offline ~Janice
Messages: 8308
Registered: April 2005
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Thank you so much Tracy, Lisa, Janet, Tamara and Tonja! You are all so smart and have said exactly what I needed. I'm continually amazed at the ministry of CHF!

Tamara I love the roller coaster analogy. I SOOO do this. I sometimes get on the roller coaster with my kids and feel what they are feeling - then I try and solve it from the bottom up. Not a good idea. With the cloud of whatever they are going through on me I can't really think straight. As clinical or cold as it may sound (to me) I need to detach, get my perspective before the Lord right, and speak from that position.

Janet, I went through this many years ago with my dad. It just about put me over the edge that he was going over. It doesn't work to simply empathize.

I'm printing out the responses and I'm going to pray by their guidance and implement the wisdom. Thanks.


TAKE TIME FOR FRIENDS!

Janice T. ~ CHF member since 09/97 ~
Mom to four - ds 28, dd 26, dd 24 and ds 21 - and wife to my sweet husband Richard.
Re: parenting toughy [message #660281 is a reply to message #660182 ] Tue, 26 October 2010 19:28 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Robin H.  is currently offline Robin H.
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Good to see you again, Janet. I'm glad you weighed in on this. Your answers are so helpful and encouraging.

Robin H.
Re: parenting toughy [message #660282 is a reply to message #659972 ] Tue, 26 October 2010 19:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Robin H.  is currently offline Robin H.
Messages: 3046
Registered: April 2006
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Thank you so much, Tamara. This is so good. I may print these off like Janice is going to do. I definitely tend to ride the roller coaster with my children and even some other relatives with whom I identify too closely in rough times.

Thank you all.
Robin H.
Re: parenting toughy [message #660320 is a reply to message #659958 ] Tue, 26 October 2010 22:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
chrissy3  is currently offline chrissy3
Messages: 207
Registered: September 2005
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Fantastic Godly advice! Thank you ladies! Tamara- that was fascinating for me to read because I have a roller coaster child. She is almost a teenager. When she is a joy there is no one more joyful to be around. But whoa...when she is on a downward spiral somehow we ALL end up on the rollercoaster! And I HATE rollercoasters! I never ever go on them in real life! Laughing

Last night was the best. It was a doozie of a day. And because I didn't have the strength or wisdom to deal with my rollercoaster dd my wonderful husband came into the room and said it was time for her to go to BED! He actually INSISTED on it! He said it was draining him and me and he was choosing peace so off she went! It never occured to me that I could 'choose peace'. But after that I went into a quiet room ,prayed, read scripture and the peace of the Lord entered my soul. My dd woke up pretty refreshed and happy. Nothing would have been accomplished last night but the same rehashing of negative talk.

Why oh why are healthy boundaries so hard? I always feel so guilty like I am not a good mother if I can't solve her every problem or at least listen to her complaints 24/7. I am thankful for my husband! He is also insisting I take an hour a day and sit outside on our lanai and get 'away' from the drama. He set up a nice table and lounge chair this weekend and spent time w/me out there talking and getting my dd 'used to' me being out there. He calls it 'our office!' So when he went back to work he informed my dd not to disturb mom when she is in her 'office' w/any complaints about siblings or ANYTHING! Very Happy

He called during the day to make sure I took that time today. I did. I brought out a Christian book and prayed and relaxed and enjoyed the cool breeze on my face. It is SO refreshing! I would never think to do this myself. We all need some perspective so I am now learning it may help to ask our husbands what they think could improve a situation. They can be removed from the drama to see things much more clearly than we can as mothers!
Re: parenting toughy [message #660538 is a reply to message #659970 ] Wed, 27 October 2010 23:35 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Dina  is currently offline Dina
Messages: 3272
Registered: April 2005
Location: Ohio
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Lisa R. wrote on Mon, 25 October 2010 07:33

What Tracy said. Offer them compassion, a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on. Offer them time for an extra nap or some quiet time to reflect or pray or whatever they need. All that part depends on what is going on and how much TLC they need to address their feelings.

And if they're having trouble snapping out of it, kind, but firm is a good policy. Remind them that grief (or whatever it is) is a part of life, and we do need to deal with it, but life goes on and it's time to get back in the game. I'd still be available to talk, but I'd work on "compartmentalizing" it a bit more, if possible. Let's get school and chores done, and we'll take a break this afternoon for tea, if you want to talk for a while then." (Okay, we never "have tea," but it sounds good! Smile The concept is the same.)

That's basically what we do. Actually, it's what I do for myself as well.


what? Lisa! you never have tea? Gasp!! get with it girl!


Dina ....... HE has made me glad!
Re: parenting toughy [message #660539 is a reply to message #659958 ] Wed, 27 October 2010 23:44 Go to previous message
Dina  is currently offline Dina
Messages: 3272
Registered: April 2005
Location: Ohio
Senior Member
wonderful discussion!!! the first 3 replies are especially amazing and right on!!!

To do the opposite, in my world ( thinking extended family), seems to equal co-dependancy....especially after years of this pattern. how wonderful to read the healthy responses you gals shared.

Like janice, i find it amazing and heartening to see how the Lord weaves things.... like these separate responses , into one tangible , healthy model.

wow!

Dina


Dina ....... HE has made me glad!
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