Posts filed under ‘parent expectations’

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• Quiet and withdrawn in an otherwise outgoing joyous kid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

Misconception of Grandparents As Parents

I try not to be surprised at anything I hear when it comes to parenting, but I was surprised during my last parenting class. 

One of the attendees spoke about her challenge as a grandmother raising her grandchild. Even though both granddaughter and son live with her, she spends more time with her granddaughter than her son does. But that wasn’t her issue. After having done parent activities like pick up report card, check homework and feed her “granddaughter”, her son’s comment the next morning was – “Why did you let her watch TV with those grades?” Really Son?

I remember hearing a similar comment from a grandfather who had taken care of his grandson the entire weekend, and the only comment his daughter had was why was her son so dirty? When I was growing up, I spent a lot of time with my maternal grandmother. I loved her completely! Not only did I spend time at her house, but she often lived with us and took care of my siblings and I while my mom and dad worked. But she quit often. Usually on a Friday evening. I wonder was the responsibility and expectation too much?

Hey Parents – where is the gratitude? As much as your parents love your children, they are doing you a huge favor when they take care of them for an extended period, bring them into their homes, take over custody, or attend parent-teacher conferences on your behalf. They are grandparents for a reason. This is their time to enjoy your children, spoil them and then give them back to you. There is a misconception that your parents are going to provide the structure and discipline (to your kids) that they provided to you (when you were growing up). That may happen, but it’s not the norm. 

 

 

 

Here are five pleasurable differences between grandparenting and parenting:[1]

  • Grands are their hero (your child’s)
  • Grands have all the time in the world
  • Grands are the ultimate ‘good cop’
  • Grands do not have the same responsibility

So readjust your expectations of your parents and allow them to enjoy being the doting grandparents. It’s okay if you have some non-negotiables; but please don’t let there be a laundry list of things you expect your parents to do when spending time with your kids.

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

[1] https://www.bowerretirement.co.uk/family/difference-parenting-grandparenting

April 25, 2018 at 4:13 pm Leave a comment

Gun Violence Begins at Home

acceptance

Growing up in the 50’s and 60’s, all I wanted was to be accepted for who I was – glasses and all, and look like my best girlfriend Susan. What I later learned is that it wouldn’t have mattered what I looked like, because most kids wanted to look like or be someone else.

While most of my friends had strict parents, I didn’t have any close friends (that I knew of) whose parents were verbally (or physically) cruel. I say that because as a kid we had parental permission to visit our close friends and I often watched how my friends’ moms and dads interacted with them. Yes I’ve been fascinated with family dynamics since I was a kid. I know what it’s like to grow up in a house where you’re constantly criticized or made to feel bad for who you are. I’ve seen it firsthand. As a child, it feels awful to be constantly criticized.Not Communicating

I also feel sorry for parents who expect to have (what they consider to be) normal kids, who aren’t. Maybe the child is sick, disabled/handicapped or have a different sexual orientation. It’s understandable to expect your child to grow up and be awesome! All parents want that. But when your child grows up and chooses a career or life that you did not expect or don’t value as acceptable, what do you do?

I believe you internalize your disappointment and think you’ve failed as a parent. Depending on your upbringing, you become critical of that young man or woman and say hurtful things that create division and separation. But let me tell you what can happen to that young man or woman; they feel rejected and hurt. You may never hear those feelings because it’s not safe for them to share them with you. If the dynamics in your household is violence and anger, they internalize that too.

Think about it! The gun violence over the last 6 years has often been random and impersonal. As a kid, if you haven’t been hugged, kissed or told how much you are loved (by your parents); if your only validation was to be told ‘How stupid you are’, ‘You’ll never amount to anything’, ‘I wish you were never born’ or ‘Shut up’; you’re ignored or beaten, it is easy to see how you would internalize those feelings and become bitter.

Anytime I read or hear about a mass or random shooting, I wonder what kind of environment that person grew up in. Were they loved, nurtured and well-cared for? Or were they allowed to do their own thing and somewhat ignored because their parents worked (a lot), didn’t know how to reach out to them, didn’t care. Gun violence photo

I am truly sorry for the mass shootings in Orlando, as well as the daily shootings in Chicago. Folks wake up! It’s not too late to reestablish a loving relationship with your child – no matter how old they are. ♥♥

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 or Mothers and Sons. Email me at: info@clynnwilliams.com

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Coach & Author

www.clynnwilliams.com

Trying to Stay Sane While Raising Your Teen (St. Paul Press, 2010)
The Pampered Prince: Moms Create a GREAT Relationship with Your Son (St. Paul Press, 2012)
Raising Your Daughter Through the Joys, Tears & HORMONES! (220 Publishing, 2013)
Yours & Mine: The Winning Blended Family Formula (220 Publishing, 2015)

 

June 15, 2016 at 11:21 am 4 comments

Hey I’m An Adult… I Don’t Need A Curfew

college student and parentsI remember the summers that I came home from college. At school, I had no curfew; at home, my mother had a different view. Girls did not need to stay out late! While I don’t remember our first encounter with the issue of curfew, I do remember the summer before heading off to law school in the fall. I was 20 years old and felt that I was an adult. I usually made it home just before daybreak. Part of  it was having a great time, and not wanting the fun time to end. The other reason was that I felt I didn’t have to answer to my mother, because of my age. My mother’s conversation with me was “What will the neighbors think?” Being young and full of myself, I told her I didn’t care what the neighbors thought. Case closed right? But it wasn’t. What I now know, is that it’s important for parents to discuss the house rules and expectations especially curfew, guests (girlfriends or boyfriends) sleeping over and issues like that with their young adults preferably before they go out and stay all night.

When our daughter came home on college breaks, we discussed a reasonable curfew – 2 am. As she matured, I only required a text message if she didn’t plan to make it home. Our youngest son is in his mid-20s, and hasn’t come home the last three nights he’s been out. I thought, okay so clearly he’s an adult, but if something has happened, we would never know. So we had the talk. This time, it wasn’t about curfew, but about the responsibility of letting us know his plans, especially with the random violence and police brutality young black males are facing these days.

How are you managing life with your college student at home?

Interested in learning more about generational parenting? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting programs for Young Adults, Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters or Mothers and Sons. Email me at: info@clynnwilliams.com

Want to read more about 21st Century parenting with old school values, Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

June 11, 2015 at 1:42 pm Leave a comment


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