Let Them Make Their Own Mistakes
"Our son, almost 16, had been an honor roll student up until ninth grade. Now his grades are slipping. But we've learned with our older daughter that kids have to learn the importance of good grades on their own. The more pressure we put on him, the harder he digs his heels in. So I've finally decided that if he fails a class, he'll be the one taking it again, not me. No, I haven't given up on him, I can only show him the way. As parents we have to remember that, for the most part, they and we will live through this and be stronger people for it! Wouldn't it be boring to have kids that always did exactly what we wanted?"
--Parent Soup member Bbales49
Change the Game
"I have a 17-year-old daughter, who is fast losing her life-long interest in sports. What we have learned is we have to let her make her own mistakes. When she resists going to practice despite our encouragement, or what have you, she obviously wants to be in control of the situation and this is her way of doing it. The more anger I show, the more in control she is. Instead, I support her decisions, whatever they may be. I show no anger, no matter how much what she is doing to her life hurts me. Then the 'game' is no longer any fun and things may change. This is advice I received from another parent on Parent Soup and it has helped to console me. It's very hard not to show any emotions, but I think I am starting to see a change in my daughter's attitude and it's only been a couple of weeks."
--Janet, New Jersey