Parenting: Bitter Pill

We know them, some of us have them, adult children who just can’t seem to get it together. They can’t get a job, keep a job, unstable living conditions, always in some sort of trouble, in jail or drama and expecting the parent to “Fix it.”

Parenting is the hardest job on earth.  You think raising a baby is difficult?  It is!  But, just wait until they are grown and you can no longer “childproof” their lives and they go their own way and their way is WRONG! lol

We also know the parents or are them, the ones who can’t bear to see their child in the trouble (they create) or suffering.  These are the parents that say things like…. “My heart is sad, my brain wants to say no, but my heart is putting up a good battle.”

The “heart” or as we most often use the term, in effect is simply emotions, what we are “feeling” at the moment and emotions are fickled things.  They are affected and changed via external data constantly from moment to moment therefore an untrustworthy source of wisdom.  The “brain” calculates reason based on fact, truths and repetitive experience.

A child throws a tantrum, the heart says “awww…give him a cookie.”  Reason says if you do, you’re rewarding bad behavior and furthermore, encouraging it.  We discipline them, not out of anger or vengence but teaching that bad behavior in life often results in painful or negitive consequences AND teaches them that THEY are accountable for their actions personally.

The heart hates it but reason knows it’s for their good and equips them to be sucessful in adult life. When we fail to hold the line as parents because it hurts our “hearts”.  We fail our children, encourage their troubles, reward it, teach them that they dont have to be responsible for consequences but rather expect us to be….

We’re literally closer to ” loving them to death” or rather doing what makes US feel good instead of doing what they need because it’s hard for US, which is in earnest, loving ourselves instead of THEM.
In short….Be Spock! Lol

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21 comments

  1. This mama has always loved hard but always with a sprinkle of tough love. A mom of 4 I will undoubtedly have one who will need the tough love more then others, i have my guesses lol, i can only hope i can stand my ground. 2 out on their own here 1 to go soonish once college is done and then the baby who is 13

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I WAS wondering just how Spock fitted in with parenting!! 😉

    I don’t have kids so won’t make any comment on that point – except to say that my understanding of life (and growing up – hopefuly we all get it right but many of us don’t get it 99%!) tells me that we need to exercise both our heart (love) and mind (reason) to the best of our mostly limited abilities in all situations, whether it be how we deal with things ourselves or how we deal with our kids, colleagues, friends or relatives… or strangers too come to think about it. 🙂

    Finding that balance between them i think is something we all struggle with, even more so when it comes to those we love the most.

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    • Well …in my mind, love and sacrifice are a given. Sadly that isnt always the case. However, the post is circumstance specific to the parents who “love” so much that they … reward bad behavior, make excuses for it, etc. Particularly based on my son in laws mother who just spent several thousand dollars to bail his brother out of jail for multi drug charges for the dozenth time…. my ex mother in law who did the same with his brother, excuses and paying the bill creating an adult that was in and out of prison, my friend who did the same regardless of who her his vandalized or robbed. 3 out of 3 of her kids spend a life of prison, the 3rd committed suicide when they got out.
      This post is specific to loving your children enough to discipline, teach accountability and responsibility etc. Discipline inst comfortable or fun for loving parents but we have to love them enough to do the hard parts that we don’t like, for their good.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Of course. 🙂

        My neighbour has a 30-something drug addict single mum daughter who they have recently let move back home… for the sake of seeing their 2 grandkids. despite losing $1000’s from their home the mother keeps paying for her food/petrol etc. No discipline/cosequences for actions 😦

        All of us do better when boundaries are set and agreed to and rules enforced fairly, preferably with input from all involved. 🙂

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  3. I consider myself lucky and extremely blessed to have had 2 great sons. Both have been living on their own for many years now, are fiercely independent with a strong work ethic and solid sense of right and wrong.

    Even better – they LIKE us! … and enjoy spending time with us. It doesn’t get any better than that 💕

    As parents we don’t get a user’s manual. Each hour of each day we are literally making it up on the fly doing the best we can with what we have at the time – hoping it will be good enough. I’m grateful I never had to deal with dysfunctional behaviour. I suspect I wouldn’t have been very good at ‘tough love’.

    I only wish that I knew in advance it was going to be ok and I wouldn’t have sweat all the small stuff along the way 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • What a blessing AND beautifully stated. It sounds as though you did pretty darn good with your kids. Our kids (5) dont hate us for discipline and making them accountable for their actions. On the contrary, it was tempered with love, respect, affection, encouragement. I have 2 personal sources, 1 a family member, 1 a friend. Family member always pacified her daughter and made excuses for her tantrums always coddling, giving candy and snacks, giving her her way. This child is my family and I love her with my very life but the truth is, absolutely everyone dreaded family events, get togethers, holidays because this child created havoc and was miserable to be around. She was so unruly that we’d have to leave restaurants, the zoo, movies etc.
      The second always made excuses for bad behavior and would even lie to cover for her children whether it was vandalism, theft, drugs to school faculty and police and when they were caught, she always bailed them out. This continued through adulthood and by the way, the kids treated her with zero respect and damanded she pay bail, lawyers etc, non-working adults shacking up in her house. 3 out of 4 of her children have gone to prison, one commited suicide.
      As parents, we love our children but we have to do and teach the hard stuff too. So blessed to have 5 great kids just as you are but I suspect they aren’t well adjusted by accident but rather we did our jobs….and prayed a lot! 😊

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    • It is true! I’m planning another post about that transition of life with pur ad and lt children and its emotional difficulty.
      This specific post was mostly about the catering parent and the difficulty it causes the adult child. But, entering that new stage if life with our kids as they become adults is so hard on us as parents ….the adjusting to our new role that can no longer shield them from mistakes. Its heart rending

      Liked by 1 person

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