My parents tried their best. They really did. But let’s just say that I try my best not to follow their example all the time.
Can anyone say drama? And using your kids as pawns? You get the picture.
As much as I love being a mother, parenting doesn’t come easy for me. Does it for you?
I’m like one of those folks who hunts down gallery openings — for the free booze and food. Except that I’m on a mission to find free or low-cost parenting classes. I’ve been like this since I was pregnant.
I just can’t get enough parenting tips. I grew up with few boundaries (can you tell?) — so I’m always trying to hone my skills.
I’m amazed at how many parenting resources there are in our country, if you just look around. Recently, one of my single mom friends invited me to a parenting class — “How to raise a resilient child” — at her school. Score!
When a local father recognized me in the meeting room — and wondered why I was at his kid’s school — I said, “Yeah, I really need the help. Thanks for having me as the ‘outsider.’ ”
He wasn’t sure if I was serious. I was.
In short, this insightful parenting expert told us: “Kids today don’t know how to use their disappointment muscle.”
Have you noticed this trend, too? Parents (myself included) sometimes have a hard time setting limits, i.e., just saying “No.”
As a result, their kids feel like they’re entitled to everything.
She gave an example that really cracked me up:
The 17-year-old daughter of a single mom had come to her mother to talk about sex. They had a very open, honest relationship, so the mother wasn’t surprised when her daughter said, “I’m ready to have sex with my boyfriend.”
They’d already talked about birth control and being safe. Their dialogue continued.
The mother thought it was going so well. Until her daughter said, “So, Mom, I’m inviting him over on Friday. And we’re going to use your bed.”
Does setting boundaries come easy for you? Are you a pro?
Do your kids get to flex their “disappointment muscles”?
P.S. Dr. Leah and I have just come up with Survival Tips for the Holidays for Single Parents – check ‘em out!
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