Friday, September 5, 2014

Problems Are Tougher Today Than They Used To Be

It’s true. We live in an age where new problems, challenges, and hurdles present themselves to parents. Tough problems and challenges. Issues that our parents and grandparents never faced. Things that haven’t even been written about in “self-help” books yet.

We live in an exciting time. Yet, a time where we can’t always refer to the past to help us out with a problem. Sometimes we have to forge our way through it…. Alone.

Schools are different than when we were young. Cell phones are allowed in a lot of them, and rules have changed. Curriculum has changed and the students and teachers themselves, have changed.

Kids socialize through their phones or online in great part, now. They don’t stand in the living room talking on the landline phone where you can snoop from the other room. No, they can text, message, or snapchat in quiet – while you’re in the room.

We have cyberbullying now. Sexting. Cutting. Selfies. Online dating. None of these things were issues when I was a girl. Not all of technology is bad. Just like not all of life is bad. But with everything new that evolves or changes in our life, there can be hurdles to overcome as a parent.  How do you protect your child? How do you give them space without letting them run amok? How do you give them self esteem without indulging them? How do you stay close, without smothering?

So many questions.

So much information to take in and digest! So much time involved in trying to keep the pace.

For caring parents, just because they have a problem, doesn’t mean it’s a life-altering one. It doesn’t matter. Being a parent is still tough. It’s tough to instill guidelines and boundaries in a world that doesn’t have them. It’s tough to help your kids and teens feel ‘accepted’ without being ‘corrupted.’

So, do what you can do. Research what you can research. Set those guidelines and boundaries that are in the best interest of your child and your family. Talk often – even if your kids are annoyed with you. Because that’s what a loving parent does. It loves, protects, and sees the big picture – even when no one else can see it.

Parenting may be tougher today than a few generations ago – but we were called to parent these kids in THESE times. You have what it takes, even if you are on bended knee in prayer and tears some nights.

Hang in there. Keep loving. Keep believing in your family.  For they are irreplaceable.

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