A Good Relationship Is Worth The Fight (Even When You Feel Defeated)

One of the biggest challenges I’ve discovered as a mom is when my child and I are not getting along.  This battle takes on many forms.  It can be when my child is two and is throwing temper tantrums, or when my child is 10 and is not doing their best in school. It can be when my child starts rolling his/her eyes at me, or the teen years when every conversation ends in an explosion. Whatever the age, it is not fun and you can start to feel defeated as a mom. And sometimes, there's a little voice in the back of our brains telling us, “You just can’t get along with this child; you might as well give up, it’s impossible.” Moms, I’m writing today to tell you: NEVER settle for less than a great relationship with your child. As moms, we must keep moving forward, even when it feels like the current of resistance will sweep us away. Don’t settle. Whatever you need to do to build a relationship with your child, keep doing it.

*This does not mean that you need to allow your child to continue pitching fits, to not work hard in school, to explode all over you and/or treat you like a doormat. NO. It means, keep working “on” the relationship, keep fighting to motivate your child, to understand your child and to parent your child.

I ran into a situation like this a while back.  My youngest daughter, Abby, is a very strong leader.  I honestly think she will do whatever she puts her mind to and could go so far as being the President of the United States one day. She is that determined. But, when this happened, she was also 18. For those of you who are not at that stage of life yet, let me tell you, it can be very fun, but like every other stage of life it has its challenges.  So ... Abby and I kept butting heads and blowing up at one another until I finally said, “Let’s go talk to a counselor.”

Did I want to swallow my pride and sit in front of a counselor? Not really. I did it because I love Abby and I want to fight for the kind of relationship that is healthy with her.

I did not want to settle, telling myself, “she’s only 18, she'll grow out of it.” Abby and I went, and honestly, I learned a lot about Abby, and I think she learned a lot about me.  Things between us have run much smoother in the Stubbs household ever since. I have a new understanding of my daughter that I didn’t have before.

Mommas, don’t settle. Keep fighting FOR your child and don’t ever give up on that relationship. It’s worth every dollar spent on counseling, every tear shed, every prayer said on your knees.