Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lord, grant me the patience to endure my blessings...

Today was rough day.
It started last night actually.  
I've been stressed; my blood pressure has been up; I've sweated and even had chills.  I've yelled, I've cried, I've sat outside until I could compose myself and then I've yelled some more.  At work today I was a bleary eyed, emotional mess who couldn't concentrate on anything.

I firmly believe that God made teenagers with the idea that they would be so difficult to live with that we would be much more able to let them go when the time came.
I'm just about there.

At one point last night The Head of My Household and I ended up yelling at each other (something we actually seldom do)...and at one point, neither of us could figure out why we were mad at EACH OTHER.
That's when I knew it was time for a change.

I started this post earlier by listing out all the difficult things we've been going through with one of our kids lately...and at one point I realized something very important.  
I was listing out all the things my kid was doing...and then I typed, "I've done everything I know to do."  
I realized as soon as the period was typed that in actuality, I haven't done everything I know to do.
I've been so scared of "upsetting my kid" or "making her feel bad" that I haven't been a parent...

I haven't taken the keys away when she speeds down the road or runs a stop sign. 

I haven't expected her to pull her own weight financially; I just keep writing checks while she plays on the computer or texts, tweets and FB's.

I didn't take her phone away the day I pulled up beside her on the highway and saw her texting and driving.

I haven't made her stay home when her room and bathroom are trashed.

I've spent a fortune on doctors, tests, medicine and not made her be accountable for her own part of feeling better (taking her meds for one)

I have given her way too much freedom in the afternoons when she gets out of school.

I didn't force schedule changes, time efficiency and sleep when she came home with a bad grade on her report card and numerous tardy slips for not even trying to get to school on time.

and essentially

I haven't given her the opportunity to learn to be responsible...for herself.

Buddy, I am now.  
I already have the phone.  Not sure when I'm giving it back.

Maybe when hell freezes over.

I found some funnies to help my feelings tonight...

kinda mean...but hey...if the shoe fits...

This one made me laugh out loud...how many of us parents REALLY knew what we were getting ourselves into????

When everything seems to be working out smoothly, hold your breath and don't move

And, the reality...I can't help that I care...no matter what they do to us, how they act, the choices they make...we love them...and we are willing to do whatever it takes to help them grow up into the people we know they are capable of being...even if it means they'll hate us for a while.
Pesky kids.


  1.  Do you remember when they were toddlers and preschoolers and we thought that was hard!  Ooof.

  2. I worried myself sick over whether or not to rock them to sleep when they were young.  I even asked the pediatrician...I had worked myself into a ball of nerves over it.  At that time he had 13 year old twins and he told me honestly that it was difficult for him to remember worrying about rocking or not...simply bc the problems get so much bigger and so much more complicated as they get older.   He was very nicely telling me to chill out...and boy, now do I know where he was coming from!!

  3. I can relate to this on so many levels. I think I want to be their friend sometimes when what they really need is a mom. Hang in there, my friend. It just has to get easier. At least that's what I keep telling myself!

  4. I can completely relate to your post today.  I am starting my own blog about raising teenage girls as I have two 14 year olds and one who will be 13 next year.  My PhD is in Educational Psychology and I teach developmental psychology at a local community college.  You would think that I would have it all together but like you I am human and emotional in dealing with my own children.  One of my teenage girls is ADD without meds because this is how she chooses to cope with the world.  I have learned that I have to back up and punt myself, read, blog, and just breath before going back and dealing with whatever situation our family is in.  Keep breathing and remember that you are not their friend as much as that hurts, she will benefit in the end.  When I teach I always get questions about how the theories relate to real life and how to parent a child.  My blog is going to be that exact topic in dealing with the science and then real life which is not as neat as the textbooks I teach from.  It is easy to say make them responsible for themselves but a much more difficult task to accomplish in reality.  Stay strong and keep breathing.  Pam from KY

  5. Tough love pays off in the end. I had to resort to it myself last semester and I have to tell you, this semester is better. 

    They needs guidelines and they need you to enforce things or they take advantage of you or the situation. Taking her phone away is much easier than having a dead daughter or a daughter who has just killed someone with her car. Harsh thoughts, but very true. 

    I am so sorry that you are having such a rough time of it now, but take comfort in knowing that you are not alone and that as tough as it is, sticking to the new plan will give you some peace in the end. 

  6. I honestly am not sure it will get much better until they have children of their own...and I'm in no hurry for that!! Some days they're as stubborn and obnoxious as they can possibly be and the next thing I know, one of them is calling me Mommy...who knows? 

  7. Pam, I can't wait to read more!! I told my husband last night that she doesn't like me without consequences so what do I have to lose by instigating more?  Absolutely nothing...so here we go! 

  8. almost 24 hours after taking the phone, she's already a more pleasant person to be around.  I almost hate to give it back.  I think this generation is so inundated with media and stimuli that they literally are on overdrive most of the time...and they don't think about the very real possibility of consequences that can't be fixed.  I would honestly rather her hate me than for her to be dead and/or for her to hurt someone else.  

    1. I completely agree and can totally relate.
      Hang in there. BTW I LOVE the vacuum photo.


  9. I'm sorry to hear you are going through this but "tough love" is critical in situations like these -- as hard as it is to pull off. I saw my parents go through this with my brothers and it was difficult but essential to get them back on the right track. Kids need their parents to set rules and boundaries and force them to follow them -- despite their objections. Good luck. I know it is hard and I don't look forward to doing this myself.

  10. I don't have children but I remember how difficult being a teenager was for both me & my mum.  We couldn't be closer now though, as Ti said, it will all pay off in the end.

  11. tough love is the hardest thing bc we wish the kids would simply do what we say...sounds so simple to us...not so much for them.  I want them to be independent but I also want them to learn that there are rules, some legal and some social, that we all should follow...in the real world, if those rules are broken, there are consequences that Mom and Dad can't fix.  

  12. I had a pretty happy childhood overall, Sam, but I would NEVER go back to the teenage years...nothing but day to day, hour after hour, angst and drama...YUCK! 

  13. Parenting is so difficult (and I'm not even to the teen years yet)! It sounds like you are going in the right direction by guiding her with some restrictions in her life. It's not fun to feel like the strict parent (who the kids probably think of as "mean") but from what I've seen it's well worth it, and someday they will understand.


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