Sheep get no respect. Nobody wants a child to turn out to be the “lost sheep” or the “black sheep.” It’s time to take a broader look at these misunderstood mammals, and at your adult children who fit the description. You may have been wrong… Read more
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When you need a parental do-over
There they stood, a father who had expected more maturity than his son possessed, and a 17-year-old boy with a hangover trying to figure out what happened. “Sure, I let him have a few drinks with me at home,” the father said to me. “But… Read more
Your Child: Asset or Ornament?
Why did you have children? Your answer would be very different from that of your great grandparents. Even as recently as 75 years ago in America, children were valued as contributing laborers in the family. Today they are embellishments. They exist to give their parents… Read more
Leaving the Faith Part 2
Last week I shared reasons that your adult child may have left your faith. Today, some coping skills for you. My journey to understand my adult children’s defection from our church begins with “The tale of two sons.” I first met “Georgia” when we were… Read more
Leaving the faith
If your adult child has left the church in which you raised them, you join an ever growing community of parents trying to figure out why. Parents who feel a strong connection to their faith wonder why they didn’t pass that on to their children.… Read more
The Nuclear Option
Disappointment is a powerful weapon in a parent’s arsenal. It’s not the same as anger, frustration or fear. Disappointment says “I know better than you.” It says, “You didn’t do it my way and therefore you did it the wrong way.” Disappointment from a parent… Read more
When Tough Love Doesn’t Work
My friends Val and Carol (names changed to protect the guilty) have something in common. They have adult sons who, when backed into a corner, will invariably make a disastrous choice about how to get out. Those of the “tough love” persuasion, smugly advise parents… Read more
When your child is no longer a child
Parenting doesn’t stop when your child “ages out.” What comes next may prove to be your biggest challenge as a parent. It is the secret rarely shared with new parents, that 20 years down the road, adult children may put a heavy burden — physical, emotional, financial and spiritual — on their parents. Welcome to the borderlands of parenting. Be forewarned; what you read here will focus on parents, not adult children. You cannot change your adult child, but you can understand, learn coping skills and, if necessary, change yourself. Feel free to share your own experiences in the “Comments” section of each blog post. Your civil and compassionate dialogue may be just the advice another struggling parent needs. To send me a private email, see the “contact” link below. Also subscribe below to receive email updates about new blogs. If you know someone else who could use this community of readers, use the share links. Now, scroll down for the most recent posts!