Children feel supported and secure when there is follow through and healthy boundaries established. We can all probably agree on this; however it is with some frequency that some choose to take the road they hope will circumvent confrontation…either ignoring the problem or threatening without follow through. This causes the child all sorts of confusion and leads to disrespect, lying and possibly out of control behaviors.
With the disintegration of the family, single parents are exhausted. Add to that some guilt and dashes of regret and depression, and you have a parent operating from a less-than position giving in to requests they have little to no energy to address. This behavior can snowball and parents find themselves enabling behaviors they disdain. As well, some find themselves saying things to their children they don’t mean but that have permanent emotional consequences.
Some things to consider that will increase your child’s feelings of security:
*Take time to care for yourself, replenishing your emotional/physical needs
*If you are married, make your marriage a priority for your child’s sake
*Allow your child to take responsibility/endure natural consequences for his/her mistakes
*Don’t be afraid to say “no” for their sake. It’s more important that they know you love them vs. having them like you at that moment.
*Ask for help. The journey is sometimes difficult. We are here to walk it with you.
Author: Kristina Polley LCSW, RN