Monday, January 03, 2011

Parenting adult children

Happy New year, ya'll.

I know that we have some GREAT young parents in our family...for which I am grateful. There were times when I was raising my children, that my mom didn't tell me things that would have been useful for me to know much sooner. I am well aware that kids before they get married can't wait until they are married so that they can run their own lives, and I support that. But I don't want to be guilty of with holding information that might be needed & appreciated. Not knowing how much mothering a mother should do when she has great kids and in-law kids, I took a class on parenting at BYU Ed week many years ago and here is what was said. I have said it to some of you, but not knowing who, I will just say it here again.

Parents of adult children should make suggestions of things that they think would be good for their children to know. Once said, then the ball is in their court as to weather or not they choose to do it, and the parent should leave them free to make that choice without disapproval or anger from the parent.

If I see kids walking into something that will be something they deeply regret, and I don't say anything about it, then it is my fault for not sharing what could have saved them from a trial they didn't need to endure. As long as I said it, then I don't have to suffer any regrets of not helping my kids. IF I share what I know, and my kids choose to ignore it, then I don't have to beat myself up for it, whatever happens. I will still hate to see my kids learn the hard way what I already knew, but I had to learn the hard way a few times myself.

Not everything I suggest fits into a category of a trial that will come if ignored. Some do. ANYWAY, what I want all of my kids to know, is that I am NOT trying to run your life. If I say something and you ignore it, fine. (And I probably leaned too heavy on Brett yesterday to go home and go to bed after their all night ride on a plane with no sleep...that was their decision to make, and it isn't a huge deal weather they did it or not- I just didn't want to make them feel obligated to stay longer than they felt they wanted to after having linner with us when they were both exhausted). I don't care if you take my advice or not. Now that you know where I am coming from, don't feel threatened when I make suggestions.

7 comments:

Cambrie said...

Fair enough. Feel free to voice opinions and suggestions.

Katie Groneman said...

I'm actually glad I took my quick power nap on the bean bag and didn't take a super long nap in the afternoon. We ended up going to sleep around 7:30 and sleeping till 4:30... maybe we've been spending too much time with Chad and Erica!

Chad said...

It very well may be that 7:30 - 4:30 will be the norm for you in a year, Katie. We'll wait and see what little Jamohina decides to do.

Christa said...

My advice on giving advice is that you do it gently. For example, saying "That's a tough situation. Knowing what I know now, I'd probably do...." End of advice. Packaging it as, "Now I know it's your life and you can do what you want, but I'd DEFINITELY do such and such... It's your life, though," sounds like you will certainly disaprove if the person makes the opposite decision. For what it's worth.

Marilyn said...

I have never yet found anything that I felt disapproval over my kids making their own decisions. You are all very smart kids. There is more than one way to do most things. I just share what has worked best for me.

Marilyn said...

Actually, I take it back. There was once a rubber duckie that knew more than me :) That is when I decided I needed to take the class at Ed week!

Brett said...

I wasn't feeling overly pressured. I figure at this point, you can suggest what time I go to bed, and I also figure you'd be okay if I accepted or rejected that. Counseling me on if I should take a loan from a payday lender is a different issue though. So yeah, I took your advice to go to sleep as a suggestion.