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How do you not take your children's behavior personally?


I.Dup.
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How do you not let their bad behavior either affect your response to them OR make you feel like a really bad parent? Surely if your child loved you and got everything they needed from you they wouldn't be so snarky and ugly to you, right? :bored:

 

I know my dd is hormonal but it doesn't seem to be related only to her cycle, it is off and on all throughout the month. I stay calm for the most part but when she personally challenges me or calls me out sometimes I just don't know how to respond. How do you keep calm and not take it personally? PLEASE HELP.

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I thought the goal was to not let them know you're taking it personally. Actually not taking it personally is probably a super power.

 

Okay, whew. Hopefully I can keep up the act then. Most of the time I send her to her room...she's been spending a lot of time in her room lately. Seriously, she gets so ugly and I don't want it to affect everyone in the family. My guilt as a mother seems to be triggered by so many things, ugh. Who knew that being a mother was one big guilt trip. I'm not sure how her behavior is my fault but my mind tends to make everything my fault so there you go.

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Okay, whew. Hopefully I can keep up the act then. Most of the time I send her to her room...she's been spending a lot of time in her room lately. Seriously, she gets so ugly and I don't want it to affect everyone in the family. My guilt as a mother seems to be triggered by so many things, ugh. Who knew that being a mother was one big guilt trip. I'm not sure how her behavior is my fault but my mind tends to make everything my fault so there you go.

 

 

Oh, the guilt. I'm exactly the same way, making everything my own fault. Which is silly because nobody is entirely responsible for the happiness of anyone else. We all know that, intellectually, but then we torture ourselves. Why? Are we Lifetime movies? LOL

 

I think if I'd known that motherhood was one big guilt trip I might not have bought the ticket to ride this train...on the other hand, I'm the engineer...

 

(((Kristi))) hang in there. She'll outgrow it. If you don't believe that, imagine homeschooling yourself at that age. I remember myself at that age and I not think my mother could have handled me full-time. I would have been in my room or engaged in manual labor most of the time and I would have blamed her.

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I remember myself at that age and I not think my mother could have handled me full-time.

 

 

So true. I still have a scar on my wrist from the time my mom tried to homeschool me when I was in 3rd grade. That lasted all of a month or so, lol.

 

When you said you would have been in your room or doing manual labor most of the time and would have blamed her, what do you mean? She IS in her room a lot of the time.

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I thought the goal was to not let them know you're taking it personally. Actually not taking it personally is probably a super power.

 

 

Agreed, for the most part, but the idea confuses me somewhat. I know the reasoning is to keep the kids from having the satisfaction of pushing my buttons, but shouldn't they also learn how their behaviors affect their relationships? And isn't it OK to let the kids know that parents have the same emotions every other human has and we don't have to tolerate whippersnappers stomping on them just because we're parents?

 

Urgh. I had no idea what a whirlwind - or should I say cyclone? - this whole parenting thing could be.

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Urgh. I had no idea what a whirlwind - or should I say cyclone? - this whole parenting thing could be.

 

 

Word. With 4 out of my 6 children it's a walk in the park. But those 2 really throw a wrench into things.

 

Things people just don't talk about (or you don't believe) before you have kids:

1. How much you would take personally of their behavior.

2. The GUILT over every stinking thing.

3. How you sometimes really would not like your own child.

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What helped me the most was remembering myself at that age. I remember getting worked up and ugly about something and immediately wishing I could take it back, but it was out there and my mom or dad was already running with it and angry. Then it created this cycle of not wanting to back down or save face because I was a stupid teenager who didn't know any better.

 

I had a talk with dd about sometimes doing or saying something we wish we didn't and then having trouble getting out of it for various reasons. I told her that her home and family was a safe place to be able to do exactly that. Now, when she does or says something that makes me angry, I usually say I'm sure she wishes she could have that back and why doesn't she go to her room for a few minutes and then return when she's ready. If she lets it go after that, so do I. No punishments or lectures. She's become a different girl and we're getting along so well now. She's also been a lot nicer, and I'm sure I have as well.

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There is a fine balance between modeling proper adult behavior while letting kids have a safe place to be imperfect people and letting them lash out and willfully hurt those around them. It is hard. I always try to keep in mind that my kids are imperfect and inprogress, just like me. I apologize when I am wrong as a model for them so they know that I know when I out of line. I let them be imperfect, and I tell them when they have hurt my feelings, but I don't hold a grudge against them. I let them join us gracefully when they are feeling and behaving better.

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Just now she came out and announced that if we don't get her the dog she wants, she will no longer do math, she yelled that she HATES doing math, she will NOT do it, she gave me an icy "eat sh*t" glare and stomped back off to her room screaming and slammed the door.

 

Lovely.

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Surely if your child loved you and got everything they needed from you they wouldn't be so snarky and ugly to you, right? :bored:

 

 

Wanted to come back to this comment, because that is something I've really struggled with too. One thing that has helped me put this in perspective is recognizing how incredibly ego-centric kids really are. Until they mature out of that thinking, they really do see themselves as the center of their universe, even if you've made every effort to help them learn that they aren't. Some kids get there faster than others, and some kids are exceptionally unselfish at very young ages - but the majority of kids seem to be naturally selfish until life experience and maturity do their thing.

 

You may very well be providing everything your DD needs, but that doesn't yet translate into feelings of gratitude and appreciation on her part. Her behavior and reactions in this regard are not a reflection on you. They're simply a matter of her maturity level at this stage. She'll get there. :grouphug:

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Just now she came out and announced that if we don't get her the dog she wants, she will no longer do math, she yelled that she HATES doing math, she will NOT do it, she gave me an icy "eat sh*t" glare and stomped back off to her room screaming and slammed the door.

 

Lovely.

 

 

Holy moly. That would send me off the deep end and I would undoubtedly do several regrettable things in response. :boxing_smiley: (<--- well, maybe not that.) Wishing you the strength and foresight to do otherwise.

 

:grouphug:

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I do take it personally. One DD is very cruel to me and to one of her sisters. She treats everyone else sweetly and is an angel in public. But behind the closed doors of our house, watch out.

 

You don't surrender your right to have hurt feelings when you become a parent. if she's hurt me, I tell her so, and I don't pretend it hasn't bothered me. And then I keep my polite distance and only interact with her if really needed. But I never lie about my feelings to her or try to fake it.

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Surely if your child loved you and got everything they needed from you they wouldn't be so snarky and ugly to you, right? :bored:

 

 

If only that were true.... :grouphug:

 

It helps me to remember all the other "phases" she went through and then passed out of. I remind myself that when she was 2-4 and screamed at me because I wouldn't let her have another popsicle, I didn't take it personally then. I remember her selfish and uncaring 10 year old phase, when I asked DH if we were raising a serial killer - another phase she also grew out of. I remember that this is just another phase of development that will (hopefully) be passed out of if I remain consistent and calm.

 

I try hard not to take it personally. When I do take it personally, I try hard not to let it show. When she crosses a last line, I let her know that she hurt me and that I haven't done anything to deserve that. Good luck!

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And then I keep my polite distance and only interact with her if really needed.

 

 

This is where I am getting, honestly. Not because she is cruel to me, but just because she isn't very pleasant to be around. I wish I had unreserved amounts of maternal love and toleration, but I just don't.

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Word. With 4 out of my 6 children it's a walk in the park. But those 2 really throw a wrench into things.

 

Things people just don't talk about (or you don't believe) before you have kids:

1. How much you would take personally of their behavior.

2. The GUILT over every stinking thing.

3. How you sometimes really would not like your own child.

Some kids.... and I have one....would not be cheerful cooperative or obedient if JESUS was their parent.

 

That's what I figured out. Some kids have made up their minds to be stinkers. Learn to shrug and go oooookaaayyy... a lot! And the best day for me was when I figured out that SOME CHILDREN ARE NEVER GOING TO BE EASY! For whatever reason, I had it in my head that eventually she would outgrow the crabbiness, arguments and tantrums. I lowered my standards and began to expect that she will just be more challenging to parent. That's not to say that I expect her to be naughty all the time and expect the worst. It is simply that I am no longer surprised when things are difficult with her. I know there will be arguments, I know there will be push-back.I steel myself for these things.

 

Some days, I do get annoyed that this child is so frustrating. But its nothing personal, it is her choice to be so hard and it's my choice to turn away from the frustration and embrace the love that I have for her. And I secretly hope that one day she will have a child just like her so she will finally understand where I was coming from.

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If only that were true.... :grouphug:

 

It helps me to remember all the other "phases" she went through and then passed out of. I remind myself that when she was 2-4 and screamed at me because I wouldn't let her have another popsicle, I didn't take it personally then. I remember her selfish and uncaring 10 year old phase, when I asked DH if we were raising a serial killer - another phase she also grew out of. I remember that this is just another phase of development that will (hopefully) be passed out of if I remain consistent and calm.

 

I try hard not to take it personally. When I do take it personally, I try hard not to let it show. When she crosses a last line, I let her know that she hurt me and that I haven't done anything to deserve that. Good luck!

 

 

We expect toddlers to throw tantrums and be angry because they are changing so much, dealing with HUGE feelings without a frame of reference to understand the feelings. Preteens and teens are in EXACTLY the same boat. It is a time of TREMENDOUS change and some kids handle it more gracefully than others.

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If only that were true.... :grouphug:

 

It helps me to remember all the other "phases" she went through and then passed out of. I remind myself that when she was 2-4 and screamed at me because I wouldn't let her have another popsicle, I didn't take it personally then. I remember her selfish and uncaring 10 year old phase, when I asked DH if we were raising a serial killer - another phase she also grew out of. I remember that this is just another phase of development that will (hopefully) be passed out of if I remain consistent and calm.

 

I try hard not to take it personally. When I do take it personally, I try hard not to let it show. When she crosses a last line, I let her know that she hurt me and that I haven't done anything to deserve that. Good luck!

 

 

What if throwing fits, being negative, and demanding ones way are overarching themes that have lasted their entire childhood? Do I just keep hoping they will eventually pass out of that? Maybe when they're in their 30's we'll finally be close? It's hard because I always hoped I would be really close and best-friendy with my daughter, but I honestly don't want to be that way anymore I don't think. :(

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another thing is that she has these wild swings where she goes from being really ugly to wanting to make up for her behavior (she's really hoping for that dog I mentioned above and she's smart enough to know that if she keeps being nasty there's no way we'll get it so she's changed her tune now) so she becomes super cheerful and obnoxious, in my face, wanting to interact and be really happy.

 

I grew up with a bipolar dad, swings in moods like this REALLY affect me. I don't think she is bipolar since it seems to voluntary but the mood swings back and forth are a rollercoaster that I am sick of riding with her.

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Do you guys have similar personalities? How do you react to things when you are upset?

 

Sorry... :grouphug:

 

 

There are similarities, I tend toward being negative too. However, I was much more sensitive and cry-baby when I was a kid, if my parent was upset with me I was devastated. She is, and has always been, outright defiant.

 

I have worked really hard to manage my negative emotions and it's hard to see her so wildly going through all of it and taking it out on everyone else. Thankfully, she does show more self control than I did as a kid (so far, and I hope that continues)

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What if throwing fits, being negative, and demanding ones way are overarching themes that have lasted their entire childhood? Do I just keep hoping they will eventually pass out of that? Maybe when they're in their 30's we'll finally be close? It's hard because I always hoped I would be really close and best-friendy with my daughter, but I honestly don't want to be that way anymore I don't think. :(

 

I know. My dd has never ever been an "easy" fun kid. She's just challenging. I will be happy if we can all get together for THanksgiving and be happy.

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my daughter is like this, tho she wasnt quite that bad at that age. she was the sweetest, easiest, most amazing child, but at puberty turned in to a crazy mean person. its been up and down since then, but right now she's living with my mom and we arent talking. i only wonder if maybe i should have been more strict about her disrespectful behavior. at the time, i was all 'freedom of speech' and just refused to react to her crazy crap. but I wonder if i should have punished her HARD over the rudeness, because its only gotten worse - but only with me. well, she also has no friends. i bit my tongue for years but now find myself overwhelmed with anger - she's been gone 2 months

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How do you not let their bad behavior either affect your response to them OR make you feel like a really bad parent? Surely if your child loved you and got everything they needed from you they wouldn't be so snarky and ugly to you, right? :bored:

 

I know my dd is hormonal but it doesn't seem to be related only to her cycle, it is off and on all throughout the month. I stay calm for the most part but when she personally challenges me or calls me out sometimes I just don't know how to respond. How do you keep calm and not take it personally? PLEASE HELP.

 

 

I don't know. I can't master this either. I'm ready to fling myself off a bridge some days. It gets really mean and hateful. I don't know how to detach. Trying desperately, for survival. If you figure it out, let me know.

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my daughter is like this, tho she wasnt quite that bad at that age. she was the sweetest, easiest, most amazing child, but at puberty turned in to a crazy mean person. its been up and down since then, but right now she's living with my mom and we arent talking. i only wonder if maybe i should have been more strict about her disrespectful behavior. at the time, i was all 'freedom of speech' and just refused to react to her crazy crap. but I wonder if i should have punished her HARD over the rudeness, because its only gotten worse - but only with me. well, she also has no friends. i bit my tongue for years but now find myself overwhelmed with anger - she's been gone 2 months

 

 

I'm your alter ego who made the opposite choice of coming down hard on disrespect.

 

It didn't work any better than your choice. Like you, I'm pretty much the sole target.

 

So...it's all a crap shoot. All we can do is survive day to day just to piss them off ;)

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There are similarities, I tend toward being negative too. However, I was much more sensitive and cry-baby when I was a kid, if my parent was upset with me I was devastated. She is, and has always been, outright defiant.

 

I have worked really hard to manage my negative emotions and it's hard to see her so wildly going through all of it and taking it out on everyone else. Thankfully, she does show more self control than I did as a kid (so far, and I hope that continues)

 

 

I'm sorry.

 

I don't tend toward negativity. If anything, I am a stupid optimist, who hopes despite all evidence, that someday I will be loved and appreciated.

 

I guess that's what faith is in the first place, believing against natural evidence....so, good thing I am a believer.

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I thought the goal was to not let them know you're taking it personally. Actually not taking it personally is probably a super power.

 

I want that superpower! My Mom had it. Why can't I have it?

 

But I'd settle for a good facade. I just don't have one. Every emotion I feel is visibly exposed on my face when it's personal (I can do it in business).

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another thing is that she has these wild swings where she goes from being really ugly to wanting to make up for her behavior (she's really hoping for that dog I mentioned above and she's smart enough to know that if she keeps being nasty there's no way we'll get it so she's changed her tune now) so she becomes super cheerful and obnoxious, in my face, wanting to interact and be really happy.

 

I grew up with a bipolar dad, swings in moods like this REALLY affect me. I don't think she is bipolar since it seems to voluntary but the mood swings back and forth are a rollercoaster that I am sick of riding with her.

 

I'm sorry.

 

I almost never get the super cheerful. Teens are so thoughtless. They don't know that in a heartbeat, they will be standing at a parent's grave (or a siblings, as I did more than once) wishing they could have more time with that person.

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Certain days my only encouragement is that my dh was VERY similar to my dd as a teen. I like him pretty well now...soooo perhaps there is hope after all.

 

I wish I had that encouragement. My husband was -and still is - Mr. Perfect. Never a moment's trouble. My son takes after him. It's easy to like them both.

 

My daughter....well....

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I'm your alter ego who made the opposite choice of coming down hard on disrespect.

 

It didn't work any better than your choice. Like you, I'm pretty much the sole target.

 

So...it's all a crap shoot. All we can do is survive day to day just to piss them off ;)

 

thank you so much, that really helps! and susan too!

 

my mom says she and my sister started doing better when my sister was 30 . . . thats only 10 years away . . . .

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I do take it personally....and so would anyone who they are friends with, or work with. Treating someone, anyone, without kindness or respect is never acceptable behavior. I refuse to pretend it is ok....or to allow anyone to be rude or disrespectful to me. I also do not allow any kid to get my goat, or make me act rudely or out of control. Usually, if one of my kids acts out, is snotty or disrespectful, or is hormonal....usually a good dirty look and turning on my heel and walking away makes my point loud and clear. I also tend to look at them weird when they come all nicey, nicey asking for a ride somewhere or for friends to come over....seriously!

 

It is ok to take it personally, but try not to let anyone get your goat and never let them see you sweat.

 

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its hard when she comes back and says she feels rejected because i walk away and wont talk to her when she's mad at me . ..uggg. but when i do talk to her, its all about how i ruined her life because i'm an awful mother.

 

I DONT lose my cool, or at least havent in maybe 4 years that i can think of. But a conversation we had in october or november ended with me saying "It would be easier if you asked for a hug instead of telling me to kill myself".

 

It wasnt long after that she said she was going to quit college (which she loved and had totally applied and gotten in to all on her own) and become a photography model so she could afford to move out of the house. mm hmm. When she was 15 she said that she and her friends had aliens who had taken over their bodies psychically at birth, and the reason she and her friends got along so well was because their aliens had been friends before, on their home planet. she also broke up with all her friends, saying they had nothing in common.

 

yeah, i know, this sounds like a crazy person. i took her to therapy but she lied to and manipulated her therapist . . . had really bad reactions to the meds she did try and refused to try the one that does miracles for her brother because "I'm not like him!" and then she got physically ill as well . . .

 

uggg. sorry i keep spilling this mess all over the place . . . i'm just really struggling

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How do you not let their bad behavior either affect your response to them OR make you feel like a really bad parent? Surely if your child loved you and got everything they needed from you they wouldn't be so snarky and ugly to you, right? :bored:

 

I know my dd is hormonal but it doesn't seem to be related only to her cycle, it is off and on all throughout the month. I stay calm for the most part but when she personally challenges me or calls me out sometimes I just don't know how to respond. How do you keep calm and not take it personally? PLEASE HELP.

 

 

I do take it personally ... as in, I take it as a reflection of my personal parenting. I am sure somewhere, someone will tell me I'm not supposed to, but how can you not? You raise the child and it's up to you to instill good ethics and behaviour. When they exhibit the complete opposite of what you've taught them, how can you not take it personally?

 

So... I don't even try not to take it personally.

 

However, in order to deal with the behaviour, I do detach myself from my personal feelings when approaching ds about it. I take my ego out of the equation and try to calmly, logically, get to the bottom of the issue. Then, I can tackle the issue without dumping some kind of guilt trip on my kid. Sometimes this takes a long time. Sometimes it doesn't. It is always hard, though, to keep that ego out of it. Sometimes I've failed, and I know that those are the times that were the least effective in dealing with the situation, so I try to keep that in mind and keep that detachment from the ego/issue.

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I don't know. I can't master this either. I'm ready to fling myself off a bridge some days. It gets really mean and hateful. I don't know how to detach. Trying desperately, for survival. If you figure it out, let me know.

 

 

 

I wish I knew how to explain to you how I do it. It is something that has saved my sanity (not just to do with parenting either). It is like I can bring up a wall mentally and emotionally and nothing gets past that. I can click right in to my logical, rational strengths and run off of those instead of emotions. Then, I can deal with the other person in that mode and at the same time use logic to explain to my own ego and emotions how this situation is not going to hurt me.

 

I will add the caveat, though, that I wouldn't advise anyone to do this too much. As a self-defense mechanism, it is awesome, but do it too much and it becomes your norm. Ask my dh how hard it is to crack that shell. :( It is a great tool for getting through hurtful situations, but it isn't a great way to live. Thankfully, when I knew better, I did better -- to paraphrase Ms. Angelou.

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Just now she came out and announced that if we don't get her the dog she wants, she will no longer do math, she yelled that she HATES doing math, she will NOT do it, she gave me an icy "eat sh*t" glare and stomped back off to her room screaming and slammed the door.

 

Lovely.

 

How did you respond to that? Because if my dd had done any of those things at your dd's age....her life as she knew it would have absolutely ended. I would not allow her to get away with that kind of tone or attitude. And if she had even dared to slam her bedroom door....it would have been gone. She can live without a door. And screaming at me?? Not tolerated. I would have brought her back to the table and she could have sat there until that math was finished. As for the dog....no way. Honestly, if she gets away with this kind of disrespect and nonsense now....you are in for a h*ll of a ride when she hits 14 or so.

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I'm sorry.

 

I almost never get the super cheerful. Teens are so thoughtless. They don't know that in a heartbeat, they will be standing at a parent's grave (or a siblings, as I did more than once) wishing they could have more time with that person.

 

 

No. They really don't get it, do they? I hear teens all the time trashing their parents. I will always, when I get the opportunity, tell them how I would give my left arm, my left kidney and my left leg just to have my mother standing in front of me lecturing me for what an idiot I've been.

 

And, I'm not kidding. She's been gone 19 years, and I'd give that in a half a heart beat.

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How did you respond to that? Because if my dd had done any of those things at your dd's age....her life as she knew it would have absolutely ended. I would not allow her to get away with that kind of tone or attitude. And if she had even dared to slam her bedroom door....it would have been gone. She can live without a door. And screaming at me?? Not tolerated. I would have brought her back to the table and she could have sat there until that math was finished. As for the dog....no way. Honestly, if she gets away with this kind of disrespect and nonsense now....you are in for a h*ll of a ride when she hits 14 or so.

 

Well, Diane, in theory, I totally agree with you. I don't 'tolerate" it either, but the day comes when the kid knows you don't really have any power at all except the power you wield relationally. And some kids will squash you like a bug and think nothing of it.

 

I'm on the ride now, hoping it ends soon.

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No. They really don't get it, do they? I hear teens all the time trashing their parents. I will always, when I get the opportunity, tell them how I would give my left arm, my left kidney and my left leg just to have my mother standing in front of me lecturing me for what an idiot I've been.

 

And, I'm not kidding. She's been gone 19 years, and I'd give that in a half a heart beat.

 

My whole family is gone, and I've used that line a few times about how I'd do anything to talk to MY Mother (sister, brother, father, grandparents...etc). I've said that one moment you are a teen and the next, you are standing at a parent's grave, wishing you had more time.

 

They don't get it at all.

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My whole family is gone, and I've used that line a few times about how I'd do anything to talk to MY Mother (sister, brother, father, grandparents...etc). I've said that one moment you are a teen and the next, you are standing at a parent's grave, wishing you had more time.

 

They don't get it at all.

 

*sigh* They'll get it when it's too late, eh?

:grouphug:

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