I have interviewed dozens, probably hundreds of psychologists, counselors and therapists. While I don't pretend to be an expert, as a journalists I have focused on health and family for most of my career. Above that, I am a mom of three active young people. Whatever you are going through as a parent, I have probably gone through something similar. While our kids have difficulties unlike we had at their age, their primary needs have not changed. As simple as it sounds, kids need to feel loved. While trying to keep them motivated and active, and while disciplining and creating rules, sometimes we lose touch with the underlying needs our kids have. Believe me, I've seen it and I've felt it. I remember having a "disagreement" with one of my strong willed children during her teenage years. I remember crying in my closet, worried that we had lost touch. I told myself I would LOVE her with all my might
no matter how much she resisted my love. I turned my face to all arguments. I used the phrase, "I love you too much to argue with you" and I walked away I tell this story in my podcast you can listen to by clicking here.
Parenting is hard. Showing love when overwhelmed with adversity is not for the faint at heart. But there are ways to show love that will come back to you in multiples. I've just begun to see this with my two older children. The times I thought we were lost have proven to strengthen our relationships. Those days are now proving to be moments that I cherish because my kids saw me "work through the hard". I like to say, "God made us to to do hard things." No matter how hard it is, push through and be a model of what we need to do when times get tough. I made a list of 20 ways to show your kids you love them. Feel free to share it and print it for a few ideas when you feel lost or like your kids need you to love them through a difficult season. I've been there, believe me when I say it really does get better.
Stay strong and faithful.