Posts filed under ‘children’

The Voices Heard Before Suicide

Suicide is a profound tragedy…

My daughter was a young girl when my brother committed suicide. I was devastated. He had been suffering with a chronic illness and told us he was praying to die, while we prayed for him to live.

He had talked about dying years before that because he was so unhappy. Suicide is seldom unplanned, and victims leave clues.

It is up to us to pay attention to those clues and intervene. That’s easy to say, and harder to do. There are lots of external influences that will make it challenging to notice the clues.

These days children are dealing with life issues that they don’t want to talk about. Bullying. Sexual abuse. Peer pressure. Parental expectations. Excelling in school. These issues are further exacerbated by the separatism that technology provides. Many of these issues young people face without appropriate coping skills. When an unpleasant event occurs they feel that life can’t go on and so they attempt suicide or they are successful. 🤯

I recently heard the story of a good kid who received detention at school and then was reprimanded by his s parents at home. Concerned that he had jeopardized his chances to get into a Ivy League school for college; he committed suicide. Did he leave any clues that he was fragile?

What about the girl who can no longer face school or online bullies and decides that suicide is a better alternative to living. What behaviors did her parents notice before she took her life?

How do we stop this madness?

Suicide is beyond devastating! It’s really bad when it happens to a child that you think is safe; has a good life; and looks normal.

Are there warning signs? They’re probably aren’t many if any unless you are watching intently and you are in tune with your child; even then there’s no guarantee that you will be aware of what’s going on.

Here is what I can tell you:

• Watch for changes of behavior

• Mood swings

• Quiet and withdrawn in an otherwise outgoing joyous kid

There’s no guarantee that you’ll catch the clues then, but it least if you start a conversation beyond ‘how was your day’; if you talk about how to build resilience; if you let your child know that there is nothing worth taking their life over…

Have those hard conversations now when everything is good. Let your child know that correcting their behavior is your job, but that you are always proud of them and love them.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

August 30, 2019 at 3:37 pm 2 comments

How to Motivate Our Kids

Did you ever take music lessons or practice a sport to become the best? It’s called deliberate practice and there are important life skills that children learn when they practice becoming better at something. One lesson that comes up for me is resilience. My daughter wanted to take dance lessons, and once she started attending the class, she decided she didn’t like it and wanted to quit. That happens often with children. They will like something because their friends like it. The challenge is getting them to stick it out until a natural ending like a concert or the season ends. Requiring them to finish at a natural ending point, teaches tolerance.

You see it a lot in some cultures where practice is relentless, but the outcomes are amazing. I think about the Olympics and Russians gymnasts. I thought they excelled because of their over-the-top work ethic. I also think about Chinese students and music. Practice makes their performances better!

This deliberate practice requires us (as parents) to perform our show and tell. It’s one thing to tell your child to go and practice their clarinet. It’s quite a different feeling when you share with them that on your job or in your business, you have goals to attain and the better that you are at setting those goals, the better you are at mastering them and achieving them or smashing them!

Parents, we have an opportunity here to build excellence no matter what your economic or social standing. When your kids are with you, get them to do more of what they like and practice it until it is amazing. You notice I’m not saying perfect because perfect means there’s no room to grow and be better and there’s always room to grow and be better. I’m also suggesting that you allow them to do something that they like, as opposed to what you like for them. It’s less of a struggle

By the way, this is not just a skill for musically and sports inclined children. For the kids who love academics; who love reading; who love writing; who love tech; help them find tune that skill and motivate them to become outliers.

An outlier is a person that stands out from all other members of a particular group or set. They stand out! That’s a positive thing. Our children are born with gifts that require motivation, nurturing and fine-tuning to stand out. As parents, this is what we can offer our children:

  • A safe home environment
  • Food to eat
  • Love
  • Encouragement
  • Structure

Sometimes the gifts that live inside of our child, are quite different from ours or anyone within our family. It doesn’t make the gift wrong or strange… just different.

So practice motivating your child and that gift of theirs, while they are on summer break. If you haven’t already seen their brilliance peek out, keep watching.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

June 26, 2019 at 5:58 pm Leave a comment

Hey Parents What Are You Wearing?

When I was growing up, there were certain things that I could wear while playing outside (like shorts) that I couldn’t wear off the block. My mom and dad were really particular about how we looked and the impressions we would make on other people.

Not only was my mother specific about what we wore or didn’t wear, she and dad had a specific way they dressed as well. One of the family rules was no rollers out of the house. which simply meant that your hair was combed and you had on appropriate clothes and shoes. My father was formal (old school) and wore a shirt, usually a tie and pants. Depending on where he was going, he had on a brim. The only time he had on house slippers was in the house.

Image result for older black man with brim

There was no way my mother would’ve come out of the house with her house slippers or anything that looked like pajamas either. As she put it, she would never want to embarrass her family’s name or ours.

Fast forward to today’s times where some parents show up to their child’s school dressed really bad! So I wasn’t surprised to read the article yesterday where the Houston principal, Carlotta Brown gave her parents a dress code when coming to school. She was tired of them showing up inappropriately dressed and setting bad examples for her students.

To all of the haters who disagreed with the principal’s rules, saying that it was discrimination against those parents who had low income. I disagree! Have one dress or shirt (blouse) and pair of pants that looks respectable. And wear that – even if you wear the same outfit every time you attend a school event.

It’s really about the kids and the role that you play in your child’s life. It is completely inappropriate to wear see-through clothing around adolescents – your child’s or someone else‘s. Talk about early sex education! “Hey John, I could see through your Mom’s blouse! She’s hot!” How embarrassing is that? Also leave the hair bonnets at home too. They are just to protect the hair while you sleep.

I know you believe that as an adult you can do whatever you want. 

You can! 

Just remember that everything you do reflects back on your children and sets an example (for the rest of their lives) whether you like it or not.

Just my two cents worth.

Learn more about your family’s dynamics. Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to be a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

May 2, 2019 at 3:03 pm 4 comments

You’re No Good To Us Dead

This week I sat in a very somber ceremony where we were celebrating the lives of women that had recently died. As I thought about their lives, I wondered how many of these women led the kind of life where they were more concerned with pleasing the people around them than taking time for themselves.

As women, we are often told that what matters is the sacrifice we make for other people – as mothers, wives or friends. I think about my mother, who give all of her time, money and energy to us (her children), family members, her  friends and community.

It sounds so wonderful to sacrifice yourself, and continuously give to other people, but when we don’t take time to nurture our dreams and create time for ourselves, we become tired, overwhelmed, disillusioned, or sick. Then we are no good to ourselves or anyone else.

When my children were young I don’t remember taking time to practice daily self-care or knowing what self-care was until two things happened:

  1. I lost a work colleague to cancer. Our lives mirrored each other’s in many ways: we were both in our 30’s, married with young children and working in corporate America. She seldom took time for herself. Lunch was an opportunity to purchase groceries or finish a project. Birthday gifts were practical household gifts. Everyone talked about how efficient and practical she was, but ultimately she didn’t get to live out her life.
  2. I went through a divorce about 10 years later. Going through divorce caused me to stop and take time to figure out what was important to me; where I wanted to be and what made me happy. It’s amazing how life crises can cause you to look at your life differently.

You don’t have to wait until a life crisis makes you make positive change in your life. Take time now to do something just for you every day. Begin a physical activity or a hobby that you love and start it today. Why wait? Find your inner Superwoman and nurture her.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my Finding Superwoman™ programs.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

 

July 11, 2018 at 12:41 pm Leave a comment

How to Successfully Communicate With Adult Children

When my children were little, we discussed lots of different topics with them and encouraged them to talk (to us) about anything. Things that were going on in their school, with their classmates, in our family and current events were all fair game. It didn’t matter whether we liked or agreed with their thoughts or not, we encouraged them to talk about whatever was going on in their lives. 

I believed if we listened to their small issues, they would be comfortable talking with us about their bigger (scarier or life threatening) issues. While I’m sure we didn’t hear everything that occurred in their lives, listening taught me three amazing lessons!

  • Like what my kids liked
  • Be open-minded
  • Ask questions of interest

These three tips allowed me to stay relevant with my children as they became adults. As I approached adulthood, I had secrets that I never shared with my mom or dad. I didn’t want to be judged or reminded, so I didn’t share many things that were going on in my life. As much as I loved my parents, I didn’t want to hear them say, “OMG why’d you do that?” No adult really wants to hear that.

However, I wanted a more open relationship with my children, especially as they became adults. I wanted to stay relevant in their lives. As an example, I liked rock music growing up. When my son realized that I was OPEN to listening to grunge and alternative music, he would invite me to listen to new songs that he liked. “Hey Mom, listen to this.” Keeping that doorway open into his adulthood, allowed to me ask him, “So what’s new?” He could choose to either tell me about some new music he liked, or share a more personal thought or concern.

The same was true with my daughters. I wasn’t afraid to share some of my ‘young woman’ mistakes with them, hoping they wouldn’t make those same mistakes. In turn, they were comfortable sharing their life with me. On the way to learning more about them, I continue to learn more about myself. Isn’t life grand?

It’s never too late to start a conversation with your children. If it’s a new experience, start small, but be consistent. The rewards will change your relationship in a positive way.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

February 11, 2018 at 5:01 pm Leave a comment

What Makes Us Hold On to Our Sons

I remember feeling happy when I got pregnant with my second child. But I wondered where would I find love to give this new child, when all of my mother love was going to my first-born – my daughter Cand.

Mums and Babies

Then Al was born and God opened up my heart to give lots of love to this new baby. It was amazing how differently I felt about this kid – this son of mine. There isn’t anything that you wouldn’t do for your son and that’s pretty cool while he’s a baby or a young boy. He’s so lovable, and the thing about boys is that they graciously allow you to take care of them. As his mom, you’re his first love and he’s pretty possessive about. It doesn’t matter whether you are married to the love of your life, or you’re a single mom, those boys really attach themselves to your heartstrings and hold on. Usually that possessive love only lasts while they are young boys. However, we’ve gotten used to the attention. So we try to everything we can to preserve that feeling of love by giving our sons, our time, money, support – everything!

The problem occurs when you’re still doing everything for him into his adult years. You’ve taken care of him throughout his teen years, his college years (or working years), and haven’t required him to take care of himself. He’s your #PamperedPrince, lock, stock & barrel! Not only are you taking care of him well into his adult years. You don’t celebrate the women that he’s brought for you to meet and approve of. You find fault with each one of them – they’re not good enough for your son. 

What makes us (as moms) hold onto our sons so tightly? I can think of three reasons:

  1. We are afraid our sons won’t love us if we stop taking care of them
  2. No one else will love us like our sons
  3. Our sons won’t do the right thing without our constant guidance

Here’s the truth – none of those statements are true! If you’ve been consistent in your love, discipline and guidance for your son, he will be okay. If you’re a single mom, make sure to give him positive, trustworthy male role models. He may do things just like you want or he might do things you would prefer he didn’t do, but trust the process. Let him go. Allow him to grow up and become the man you always knew he would be! He’ll make you proud.

Interested in learning more about your mother-son dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters or Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

September 29, 2017 at 1:10 pm Leave a comment

Every Adult Is Not Parent Material

When I read or listen to the news about parents abusing or killing their children, my heart breaks and I know they must not have had someone that they could reach out to and ask child-abusefor help. Last night I read about a woman who was insanely jealous and suffocated one of her children because she thought her boyfriend was cheating on her.  Other stories talk about how women didn’t feel they had anything to live for and decided to take their own life and the lives of their children.

I realize that children come into our lives in different ways. Some people have kids very early in life (or late in life) and love them as the spiritual gifts they are. Other people have them “accidentally” and treat them as objects or hindrances and never really “get it“, that the child in their life is truly a gift from God and here to teach us specific lessons.spiritual-gifts

While I was a twenty-something, I didn’t want kids. I wanted to climb the corporate ladder and go as high as I could without the responsibility of raising children. Plus growing up I had had many jobs babysitting kids (as well as watching my own brother & sister), so no thank you was my answer to having kids! After much thought and five years of marriage, I decided, I had room in my heart for a child. While that was my decision, I realize not everybody gets to decide or puts that kind of thought into having their children; I just wish they would.

Raising kids is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done! Kids take your Time, your Patience, your Energy and all of your Money! However I would do it again without a second thought. Were there times that I wanted to give them back to the Creator? Yes – probably so! But that’s the time that you reach out to someone close to you; someone who is saner than you and you say “Help! I need some time to myself“.

If we’re honest, we know some of those women before they’ve reached the breaking point. If you’re like me, you feel their “strangeness” when they come around you. Follow your intuition next time. When you feel that one of your women-friends  or family members is a little too quiet or withdrawn, reach out to her and offer her your time and attention. Take her children for the day, so she can take some time for herself. You’ll have to do it without judging her because life has a way of coming back around to each of us. Today it may be your turn to help a woman out, and tomorrow, that woman may be in a position to help you. You never know. I call it KARMA.

For my prayer warriors, here is my prayer: “Father, today we pray for those facing desperate and lonely times. We pray especially for poor and defenseless children everywhere. Help us meet their needs as we are able.” Daily Bread 12/21/2016

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!

C. Lynn Williams
@MsParentguru
www.clynnwilliams.com

December 22, 2016 at 1:04 pm Leave a comment


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