Early in motherhood someone jogged my memory that I’ll spend more of my life as a mother to adults than to the young children which can be in my care. In the land of parenthood, time really does fly!
The query then, is what can we do as parents with all those adult years? Does our influence exit the door once we grow to be empty nesters?
The struggle with accepting this latest stage of life might be summed up on this quote:
“A mother’s job is to show her children not to want her anymore. The hardest a part of that job is accepting success.” Isn’t that so true?
I do know in my experience the influence of my parents, particularly my mom, has only grown as I personally am now navigating maturity. We never stop needing our parents.
But if there doesn’t exist a whole step-by-step handbook to parenting young kids, there actually doesn’t exist one on parenting adult children. The waters get murkier as you each learn to traverse a hopefully close-but-somehow-independent relationship. Although your kids not need you to make decisions for them, your support and guidance continues to be very much needed.
What are some ways parents still act as encouragements and rally behind adult children? Here are just a few ideas to get you began:
1. Let Them Go
To “let go” may sound counter-intuitive when the goal is to still be involved, but by some means, it’s just the best way it really works. Most young adult/late teenager needs to feel like they’ve the space to make their very own way on the planet.
If you hover over their every selection, giving unsolicited advice it’s very likely they may distance themselves from you. In Genesis 2:24 God lets us know that there will probably be a time that each grown up has to go away their home and set out on their very own.
In my very own life, my mother and father did this particularly well. I made a decision to attend college removed from home and get married during my THIRD 12 months as a university student at twenty years old.
Somehow, they dropped me off at a campus 11 hours away from their home and smiled and hugged me. They offered their unwavering support for my decision to complete college quickly and marry my highschool sweetheart. Truly, we might have needed to get married on the Courthouse in borrowed clothes without them. They gifted us a wonderful, love-filled wedding.
Their willingness to “let me go” and support me when my dreams took me removed from home showed me that I could wholeheartedly trust that they were on my side as a budding adult.
Many years have passed since then and while we haven’t at all times agreed, I’ve never not had a detailed relationship with my parents. Thankfully now they live 10 minutes down the road but after they said goodbye to me as a freshman in a state removed from home, they’d no guarantees that our homes could be close again.
It took trust, love, and an entire lot of religion to be supportive during those early years.
The call to hope on your kids doesn’t stop once they leave the house! If anything, the day they move out will be the day you amp up those prayers greater than ever before. Adulting is HARD. No matter what age your kids are, they need the guidance and support of the Holy Spirit of their life. Your prayers invite that power to be alive and lively of their each day life, whether or not they realize it or not.
If you aren’t sure what to hope or methods to pray for them, start by praying scripture over them. Pray Philippians 4:7 over them that God’s amazing peace will guard their hearts and minds. Psalm 5:12 asks God to surround them along with his shield of affection. Psalm 27:13 invites God to indicate them His goodness within the land of the living.
Anytime you come across a verse that encourages your heart, convert it to a prayer on your children.
3. Speak the Truth to Them with Love
One wonderful thing about being a parent is that you realize your kids higher than anyone else! You understand how their personality works, their history, about past hang-ups, and even concerning the dreams they hold dearest to their hearts. You have the ability to see right into their heads when life gets tougher.
Don’t draw back from speaking truth to them after they need someone who truly knows them to remind them of it.
Approach them with tenderness and allow them to know that you simply see them. Even in the event that they don’t respond positively within the moment, the fact is all of us wish to be seen, irrespective of how old we get! This will not be a moment to press or fuss, but simply to remind them of what you realize to be true for them. Communicate that you realize them, you see their struggles, and are 100% behind them.
4. Be Available to Spend Time Together
Life never gets easy. We think that in each latest phase of life brings, we suddenly will get an entire latest lease on available free time. That’s just not true! It’s just as easy to refill your calendar as an empty-nester as a young Mom. Prioritizing family time looks different once everyone seems to be out on their very own but it surely’s still essential. Carve out time for family dinners or sneak a visit to offer your kids a surprise visit, simply to be with them.
Now that I’m an adult the very best gift my parents give me is their presence. I’m just thankful to be with them. I really like attending to find out about who they’re as adults, hear their tackle life, and to get to make memories in this stage of life. Encouragement might be so simple as an unexpected free lunch from Mom and Dad or as exciting as a weekend together doing something out of the norm. Your time and devotion is the very best gift you possibly can give your kids.
5. Let Them Know You Are Proud of Them
Words of affirmation are vital in being an encouraging force within the lives of others. You remember when your kids were little and the praise flowed freely? Every tiny accomplishment is accompanied by praise. It’s not crucial to take it that far but tap into the cheerleader you once were and speak life into your adult kid’s lives.
Let them know you continue to see their efforts, talents, skills, and imagine in them. No matter their stage of life, exit of your approach to show them the ways you see them thriving. This will mean a lot to lift their spirits in the event that they are in a season where they feel lost. Even in the event that they are doing well for many of us an enormous measure of our success in life is knowing that our parents are happy with us.
6. When You Have the Chance, Invest in Them
We all have different resources at our disposal. Some of us have access to money, others have connections, some us include special skills, and irrespective of what everyone has something we will offer our youngsters. If nothing else our children at all ages need our love.
When you will have the possibility, use what you will have, to take a position in your adult children.
Life doesn’t include many lucky breaks but having an invested parent in your life may beat out all of the luck this world has to supply in providing you with a leg up. When a door is open for you child to learn, grow, or succeed give them your blessing to go boldly forward. When we life feels dangerous, the support of your tribe might be all of the encouragement you want to take that next scary step.
7. Be Honest and Open concerning the Lessons You Have Learned in Life
Age equals experience. Your kids can profit from access to the wisdom you will have acquired over your lifetime. Be open concerning the lessons you will have learned each by avoiding trouble through right selections and perhaps the things you will have learned the “hard way” too.
This transparency allows your kids to feel like you’re an accessible resource they will go to after they need direction and encouragement. If you retain an open conversation along with your kids about your selections and lifestyle, they won’t feel awkward approaching you after they have questions.
They may not at all times do what you say but it surely’s encouraging just knowing you’re open to those deeper conversations after we face life’s harder decisions.
8. Remember Your Kids Aren’t You
It’s the age old story where the parents have one idea concerning the life their children should live, then their kids hit maturity, and choose to take a special path. I mean that is the plot of so many movies. It begs the query, why does our culture keep telling this story? We tell it because rings true for therefore lots of us!
We grow up and choose to take our own paths and follow our unique passions.
Rather than being the parent within the story that “has to return around” keep your house as encourager intact and let go of a dream that was never meant to return true. From the birth of our children they usually are not our own. Their stories usually are not ours to regulate. God chooses us as stewards to take care of his creation. When it’s time for them to be grown ups; it’s our time handy them, their selections, and their story back to God.
Titus 2:4 encourages us to like our youngsters. The best approach to proceed to encourage your adult children is to proceed to indicate them love at every turn. Speak loving truth into their lives, pray God’s truth over them, be their cheerleader after they need it, and be present when the chance to spend time together comes around.
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