When “Picture Perfect” Isn’t So… Perfect

When picture perfect isn't so perfect.  There is no perfect family. ConnieAlbers.com

Oh not again!  Your eyes begin to fill with tears.  You want to dry them up but the emotions are just too strong this time.  That look, you know the one I’m talking about, that look from your once adoring child.  That teenager, who once thought you could do no wrong, now seems to only glare at you when you speak to them. You’ve stayed up late reading every blog or article you could find on being your child’s best friend.  Every morning you purpose to try the new approach you learned the night before.  You’re optimistic, surely this will work.  However, after several attempts your frustration builds, discouragement begins and you find yourself wanting to give up.

The mental dialogue begins.  I call it the blame game.  If you can just identify who has the problem then you could get some emotional relief.  All you want is for that sweet precious child to look and speak to you with that “I love you so much” attitude, the one you had enjoyed for so many years.  You talk to your friends thinking they will have the answer, you pray and cry out to God to make it better.  Nothing seems to be working.

Reality is, nothing is working.  You’ve tried teaching, talking, modeling, controlling, correcting, withholding love and worst of all comparing them to that other child, the one who is perfect.  A mother will sometimes say or act in ways that wound the heart of that sweet child they once nurtured and cared for in a moment of frustration.  It is a desperate attempt to fix that which is broken.

Regardless of how your children treat you, you still have a choice in how you respond.  Will you throw your hands up in the air and quit?  Or do you keep reaching out and love them?  Giving up should never be an option, for a couple of reasons. 1.) We are called to love others as Christ loved us.  God never gives up on us when we don’t respond right to Him  2.) When you give up you lose the opportunity to influence them.  No matter how difficult it is for you, how much they’ve hurt you you’ve invested too much to not finish well.

An important action you can take is praying specifically for a healthy relationship between you and your child.  Then, be like a rock.  Steadfast and unwavering in all that you do.  Next, keep your emotions under control, they can only rule over you if you let them.  Lastly, give your child the benefit of the doubt.  Honestly, they may not understand what they are doing.

God’s word says He will give wisdom to those who ask.  While you aren’t responsible for the actions of others, you are responsible for yours.  Remember love over comes a multitude of wrongs.  It is hard to resist genuine love.  You can do this because Christ will do it through you.