Saturday, June 29, 2013
No, it's not my age. It's not my abilities.
It's my children's age and abilities. My kids are hitting that age. I have 11 year old twins. My daughter is starting to show her changes, but handles everything quite well. She loves her daddy and we get along very well. Her level of literacy is about 3 years ahead and has almost no difficulties with advanced school studies. The interaction she has with her friends is rich and she overcomes those cross childhood difficulties with just a little parental advice.
Now my son. Here is where most of the hardship begins. He is very gifted and extremely smart. He's one of those kids that solves math without having seen it before, assembles and formats computers, and lives with no limitations. Sounds great, RIGHT! Well now mix in lying, sneaking, candy, taking money, and the challenge of outsmarting his parents. So now comes the point of what to do. This is a huge ongoing story, with a lot of missed steps along the way.
What does daddy do next. Everyone want their kids to do better than themselves. I went from scoring in the 98% for a national test issued only to chemistry majors in college to becoming a bartender. (story in itself). Now I have to reflect back into my own past, find all the wrong and mistakes, and project them into my sons future. Then figure out how to teach him now the good choices I should have made. All this with letting him succeed and fail at his own will. Successes are congratulated and failures are treating like a learning curve and never viewed as a "Fail".
The immediate mountain is a united parental idea system. This does not exist. We have done the marriage therapy, then child therapy, a therapy class for boys with relationship bonding difficulties (that's and interesting class), now a mix of child/family relationship skills. Soon the "parents" will be attending a parenting class dealing mostly with teaching your children, issuing consequences, and not using one parent as a lever of discipline.
And there you have it. The reason I'm reflecting.
BTW- My first reflection was that I'm being a good person and a good father. I know who I am, what I'm doing, and why. I also believe that success will be the outcome
Member Comments About This Blog Post
I feel for you. I do not have kids but am a quasi-parent to Mike's 13-year-old son, who also has a bit of a lying problem. Scout is an only child and, unfortunately, has been coddled most of his life and not had to deal with consequences of his actions. His family all just say, "Awwww, Scout!" when he lies or does something objectionable. Then I came along and just - couldn't - remain - silent. So, while I can't control what happens when he's at his mom's, he's learning that in our house, lying is an Epic Fail and consequences will ensue.
You're in a tough spot between letting your son make his own decisions and fail, and monitoring him to teach him to use his super powers for good instead of evil. The thing, though, is that I don't think teaching him the choices you "should have made" will help. He is in his world and nothing compares. Just teach him to be a good person, to use his brain and his compassion, and he'll figure out the rest with your support and love cheering him on. :-)
1750 days ago
Sounds like a lot - and great of you to share! I am certain that you are a wonderful father. Didn't know you had twins! No wonder you have so much energy- you have lots of practice.
1754 days ago
I reflect daily on if the decisions I make for myself and my kids do them good or harm. I think deep down I am a good parent and I only did the best I knew how to do at the time but daily I struggle wondering if I had done this or that and wonder if I had anything to do with where my son has ended up lately. Yup, struggle, reflect, watch the mirror and in my case pray!
So glad you see what you have done to be a great parent! Your kids are obviously important to you and that, I believe, is the first step in any parenting. My kids are 21 and 18 now and despite the last 3 years of struggle for my son, I think he is on a healthy path again!
Conrats on your successful parents skills!
1754 days ago
Sorry - I don't have any advice for the kiddo situation. Hopefully the classes will help you out. It seems like you are doing the best you can - keep it up!
1754 days ago
Kudos to you, Konrad.
From one parent to another (my kids are 15 and 8, girl and boy, respectively), and every day is a reflection as to whether or not what I am doing for the kids will turn them into productive citizens or complete a-holes (to put it bluntly).
That your family is willing to take classes, have conversations, and really consider each step you make and how it affects others is an absolute fantastic way to go. Hopefully you can apply to your life the tactics you learn in those classes.
As a former teacher, I've noticed that when kids know they are loved, regardless of the decisions they make, they really blossom. Some have to push the envelope (11 is when my daughter started that) to know the limits of their parents. Hopefully they learn that you love and support them and want them to be good people, and the way they do that is by making decisions that don't hurt themselves and other people.
I distinctly remember one kid in class asking me, "Am I bad?" He was making a lot of bad decisions at that time, getting into trouble with all the teachers and principal. The best (and only?) thing i learned from my principal at that time was that kids aren't bad. So the answer was - "No, Dustin, you're not bad. You're just not making very good decisions." I know for a fact that Dustin was having a very hard time at home, and making more enemies of adults wasn't going to help him.
Not that the story applies to you, it's just something I was thinking about...
Anyhooo.... When I get it figured out, I'll let you know. ;-)
I wish you the very best. Be patient. :-)
1755 days ago
You sound very confident. Have a blessed and wonderful Sunday.
1757 days ago
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