I had a long talk with my daughter this weekend where I sought parenting advice.
Advice on how to parent her.
My daughter and I are close and talk about everything and so when we fight, it’s unsettling. But…she’s a teenager and so we fight a lot more lately and I hate it…so we finally sat down this weekend and hashed it out.
I’m not going to betray her privacy and get into the specifics but basically it boils down to disagreements between 1) Me parenting her and 2) Her not needing to be parented.
In the end, we both agreed that the other person had valid points and we came up with a game plan for how to move forward. How I will parent less, and she will be more understanding about my need to parent.
Afterwards I was like, “Damn. That was kinda awesome.”
I’m not sure any parenting expert would hear someone say, “I took my kid’s advice on how to parent them,” and approve, but it really worked. At least it did once we both calmed down enough to really be sincere and really listen to what the other person was saying.
I don’t know if that would work for everyone. E and I didn’t have conflicts in the same way – probably because I left him alone more since I had two little ones killing my energy level every day. I’m not sure if Wes and I will be able to have similar conversations and come to good resolutions, but miraculously, it worked today and I just wanted to document it as much as I could without trampling into her privacy bubble.
I basically said to her, “When I see X,Y, and/or Z I feel like I need to intervene.” She basically said, “But I’ve proven that I can do A,B, and C without your intervention.” And so we agreed that I’ll let X and Y slide but I’m allowed to chime in when I see Z.
Because – she had valid points. She does a lot without any nagging or pressure from us. She does well in school without us having to hound her. She makes time for family. She takes care of her mental and physical health. She deserves a little bit of room to try and fail without me hounding her about how she’s trying and failing. But I’m still her Mom and I can’t turn off the part of me that feels compelled to intervene when I feel like I’m seeing ways things could be better, or paths that could be more fruitful.
Let’s see how well I stick to the new rules because it’s very hard to pull back the nagging beast once it’s been released out into the wild. 🙂