I’m sure that some people will believe that the role of a parent should never change. When your kids are young you guide and if necessary control behavior. Some parents will still attempt to do this when your kids have fully grown. My father was masterful when it came to raising me and my brother. As we got older he became more of an advisor to us. He told us what he thought we should do rather than try to do things for us. To me that made a significant difference in my life. A parent’s role should change as a child grows up, and to some extent parents need to allow their children to make some of the same mistakes we made growing up. Many years ago I knew a lady who was spiritually grounded. She had 2 daughters that were brought up heavily in church and they were sheltered from the world. They were beautiful spirit wise and everyone knew they were well protected. When they finally went off to college to be on their own they “both” got pregnant in their first years and had to drop out, because they didn’t know the world they lived in. Their mother “protected” them, but she didn’t “prepare” them. The last time I saw those fully grown women they were nothing like the little girls I knew. I try to keep things like this in mind when dealing with my own kids. I allow my kids to come to me about anything and I won’t judge them first before hearing them. My kids love me (and I love them back) and they always know that their father will listen first and support them. My daughter in college calls me about her relationship issues all the time and I guide her instead of trying to control her. She loves the fact that I will alway listen to her. My relationship with my kids is important to me. Everyone has their own methods for dealing with kids. Some of those methods work and some do not. If you consider yourself to be a controlling parent (while your kids have grown up) and your ways are not working then maybe you should try being more of an advisor now. Some kids don’t like to be controlled all the time. It might make the biggest difference in your parental relationship. For your kid’s sakes I hope you “try it.” Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought. As always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
Brett Jolly, sax master Wynton Marsalis and keyboardist Stan Brisbon