Thursday, March 15, 2012

When Your Child Asks for Help

When you adult child asks for your advice, what should you do? When they specifically ask for your help, they really want it. Letting them know that you understand is key. Common sense, listening, and avoiding hysterical outbursts are essential. Calm is in order.

Hard as it is to do, try to separate your pain from your child's. When those you love are in pain, it is difficult not to worry. As much as we want to help, there are times when they must resolve it on their own. It is really tough to keep the right balance and stay sane and helpful. If you say something unhelpful, you will know it fast enough since you will be cut off. If you are on the phone they might say, "okay mom, gotta go now."

It is often true that you don't hear from your adult child when things are going well, but you can be sure the phone will ring when trouble arises. We strive to be a safe harbor for our children when they need our help and support. If our children are more concerned about our reaction to their problem they will not come to us. The goal as parents should be to "hold them close with open hands."

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