Archives for posts with tag: fight

Ask the average parent with a young adult at home if they enjoy their teen, and probably the answer is ‘NO!’  Well, in our home, we not only like our teens, we appreciate them as young adults.

We have home schooled our kids for 17+ years, ever since my 25 y.o. son decided he never wanted to go back to school in 2nd grade (that’s another blog post!).  The decision to home school caused our kids to turn out completely different than the direction government, private, or Christian school would have taken them.  Besides each of them being our brothers and sisters in the Lord Jesus Christ, we actually are intruiged by our young adults interests and talents, have engaging conversations with them, and enjoy their company during mealtime, board games, or late night laugh sessions.  Life is not always perfect, but they are in the select group we CHOOSE to be involved with every day of our lives.

This is why I can write a post on ‘not YELLING at young adults’…okay, I can write about it, but don’t hold me to it at ALL times!

Yelling is what happens when nothing else has worked to get someone’s attention.  It is also a way to vent frustration.  Sometimes, it actually works to achieve the desired outcome, but afterward there is a heavy price to pay.  The point being, all teens, especially adopted with birth dads or grandmas or foster parents that yelled, will not take a liking to being yelled at.  Therefore, they will not respect the parent who yells, or hear anything communicated during the yelling match.  They will freeze, fight, or flee.  That is not the desired outcome.

So, what motivates young adults?  What motivates parents?  Money, friends, free time, new possesions, opportunity, compliments, polite requests, rewards for work well done, travel, special time with Mom or Dad?  These motivate me!  Of course there are trade-offs, and we all  must work within the limits of available resources.  Parents and teens can brainstorm solutions that are win/win, stick to what is agreed upon, or suffer the agreed upon consequences for not.  It takes time, patience, biting your tongue, unfolding your fist, and being on your knees in prayer.

Having a positive, productive relationship with your teen, works.  Being on their team as coach and cheerleader, mentoring them, discipling them, talking to them about their dreams and sharing yours, setting reasonable boundaries together, all these build relationship and secure bonding.  Teens need the confidence that comes with parents who show affection, concern, interest, and spend time.   Maybe things won’t get better overnight, but in the long haul there will be results.  Find out what your teen wants out of life, and out of their relationship with you, then move in that direction.  

In just a few short years they will be on their own, ready to accept what the Lord has for them. If you don’t help them fly, they’ll be back in the nest!  I think I’d rather be more patient and avoid yelling now…

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Our first winter storm of the year is predicted to begin this evening.  The guys are rushing to finish work on our new roof, ahead of the rain-changing-to-snow. The gals are heading to town for necessities in case we can’t get out for a few days. 

Thanks to Weatherbug, we get a pretty good prediction of coming patterns days in advance, as our rural life is so weather-dependent.  We have  learned to predict weather changes ourselves, watching the livestock for their signs of hunkering down, eating more to put on a heavier fat layer, and piling up dirt or old hay for bedding in their sheds.  We can also tell by the changing leaves, dying vines, and more frequent wind, that the cold and snow are approaching.

We keep a good stock of food, feed, water, and emergency supplies in case of power failure.  During the last few weeks I got out all the space heaters, electric and wool blankets, flannel sheets, and winter coats, gloves, and hats.  The firewood is cut and stacked. We are ready for this storm, and hopefully any others that come through the long winter ahead.

Adoptive parents need to be able to predict changing weather in their children’s behavior patterns.  Storms can mean a total shutdown ‘freeze’, or worse, is the ‘fight’ or ‘flight’ instincts that kick in when children are unable to cope.  Signs for impending bad weather in our home include an increase in ‘alone’ time, sassy responses, lack of eye contact, bedwetting, sneaky behavior, lying, stealing, and a host of other red flag storm warnings. 

When the ‘weather’ starts to change for the worse in our home, it is time for action.  As parents, we need to make sure we:

  • have stocked up on the essentials of daily devotions, couple time, and family time
  • are providing a warm, secure home with a calm, steady daily routine
  • get back on course with schedules and routines
  • remain calm and patient as the clouds are gathering
  • keep a cheerful disposition in the adverse wind
  • be consistent in dealing with the damage
  • set a Christ-like example regardless of the weather

 The ‘power outage’ storms of running away, violent acting out, or complete comatose breakdown need to be averted, if possible, as they wreak heavy damage and require significant recovery. 

Parents may want to delay dealing with a child’s inappropriate behaviors until the storm has passed.  There is no point trying to lecture and correct during a ‘blizzard’ of overwhelming negative and unsafe behavior. Instead, the family may need to wait out the storm by cuddling in front of the fire with a good book.  Later, when sunny skies have returned, parent and child can discuss what happened, and what needs to change so it won’t happen again.  Prayer, repentance, and forgiveness should follow as essentials during the storm clean-up and repair.

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