An old friend of mine once remarked with frustration, “Children must play.”
They do and will test the limits of patience. How many parents get to graduation ceremonies with no hint of gray hair? I would like to meet one. I maintain that they do not exist.
Some children are easy going, while some are challenging. While others will make you question what you could have done better when they were younger to guide them through their teenage years more effectively.
Just as each person is different, so are children. The parenting style that works with one may not work with another. Some children are outgoing and self-starters. Motivated and driven to succeed.
Some children will rebel with vengeance, even in some cases with no warning.
Going from a loving sensitive child to one you barely recognize, making you wonder if Bonnie and Clyde were in need of new partners.
None of us really know the meaning of unconditional love until you must face it head on.
Some, but not all teenagers know the meaning of consequences. If they don’t they will eventually.
Testing the boundaries. Mom is easier to deal with than dad, or dad is easier to deal with than mom. Playing both sides against each other or just straight out manipulation.
The joys of raising children can also be positive.
In fact, when they are grown they don’t remember many of the bad times anyway. They talk about what was good, trips that were taken, holidays from years past and hilarious experiences that will never be forgotten.
I remember an older person that I took care of at a part-time job once for extra money. They were near the end of their life and were reflecting.
They said they didn’t have a lot of regrets, except that they hadn’t told their children how much they loved them enough, or encouraged them.
Once they are gone and out on their own, we as parents obviously don’t have the same influence, but from experience I can attest that they frequently call or text asking for advice, even sometimes giving their own advice to me.
We all love our children, whether they are successful or not. They are our children after all.