“Stop trying to perfect your child, but keep trying to perfect your relationship with them”
One of the things I am most grateful for is my relationship with my children, who are now in their twenties and thirties.
In my parent coach training with Gloria DeGaetano, at The Parent Coach Institute in Seattle WA, I learned that, “Relationships are primary.”©
Relationships are important in all aspects of life but the relationship between parent and child is, I believe, is one of the most important ones. Without having a good relationship with our children we have no way to support and guide them throughout their life. And if we as parents don’t support and guide them, who will?
Relationships take work and it is no different in the parent/child relationship. Usually in a relationship both people are working very hard to keep that relationship intact, but in the parent /child relationship you, as the adult , will be the one that is responsible to keep this relationship undamaged. Depending on your child this can be a very easy task or it can be a very challenging one, but no matter whether it easy or difficult the burden is on you.
Keeping this relationship solid does not mean giving free rein to your children. On the contrary, it means setting expectations and consequences and following through with what you say. It means making the hard decisions for your child even as they tell you that they hate you. It means guiding your child to become a responsible adult even thought they may not like what you are doing. And all of this needs to be done in a way that does not damage the relationship.
How do you do this? By pausing before you speak, by realizing that are responsible to your child and not for your child, by tamping down your anxieties and most importantly by staying calm. This is a huge responsibility but that is what being a parent is all about.
So… Remember that, “relationships are primary”. Remember that you are teaching them, not punishing them. Remember that no matter what your child throws at you, you are capable of handling it with grace and respect.
Have some fun today!