Parenting is such a fine-balancing act and I strongly believe we need to invest time to reflect and think about how we parent our children to keep everyone happy, healthy and fulfilled for the long term. Sure, there is a need to let growing children be “independent” but I sometimes think independence is over-rated. It can be cold, lonely and empty. But with strong roots and strong connection to the First Family, I believe that young adults can achieve great heights whilst being cocooned in the love they were born into.
One of the things parents often assume is that the way we parent our growing children remains static from birth to 18 and beyond. Actually, like the flow and ebb of time, this changes as our children grow. For example, when they were just born, tiny children needed round-the-clock care; later, establishing disciple and routine for toddlers followed by letting them go a bit as they fall into the flow of how we wish our lives to be led.
For us, the time we need to bring our children close most is when they are in their late teens and early twenties, when they are forging ahead with their new lives. More effort is needed at this stage, because they no longer live at home and look to us for everything.
Adult children need to fly, but their roots also need to be nourished.
SIX SUGGESTIONS FOR KEEPING THE CONNECTION STRONG
1/ Weekly phone calls, even when you have nothing new or exciting to say!
2/ Send birthday cards and “real” presents, however small, rather than emails or money transfers.
3/ Give framed family photographs as presents to adult children.
4/ Make plans to spend at least a few days together each year.
5/ Think about them often – strengthen the energetic connection.
6/ Walk down memory lane – Do the things you once loved doing together once more.