Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Learning to talk less


For a parent who has talked to her children all their lives…I now have to stop. It has finally dawned on me: I’m talking too much.

When your kids are little, you are their everything. Remember how your baby smiled and gurgled when you entered the room? You were the source of all their delight.

You talk all the time to young children: You teach, you entertain, you counsel. And now, it is very clear that when I tell my teenagers what I think about something, they don’t want to hear it.

It is a stage in parenting I never considered. No one does. You expect to be the hero of your children’s lives forever. If you don't watch out, you become a bother. It is painful to see my kids’ faces cringe when I talk too much.

“Mother, be quiet,” Nina says. Pablo just tunes out.

I’ve been told your kids come back to you after they break away.

But right now, I need to follow my own advice: (I’m the bank and a vacation destination and a source of pure love and support.)

My job description has changed. Now I need to be their rock. Still. Solid. Silent.

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