What To Do When Your Own Kid Feels Like A Stranger

Love, Family

When watching the distance between you grow is just too hard to handle.

As parents, it makes sense that we have that natural, mama-bear instinct to protect our kids from the so-called dangers of the outside world. From simple things like falling off of a bike for the first time to coming home from school with a bruised ego, it's hard to ignore the internal switch that flips on at any sign of our kids' distress. But even though it's normal to want to be the hero in their eyes, we have to face the sometimes tough-to-hear truth that as much as we want to, we can't magically solve every problem. As we know from our own childhoods, growing up is all about making mistakes. How can we expect our sons and daughters to learn from theirs if we're constantly fixing everything for them?

Thankfully, parenting expert Renee Jain acts as a voice of reason to quiet that overwhelming need of ours to make everything perfect! We had no idea that all that time we're spending trying to come up with the ideal solution to make life easier for our kids might actually be pushing them away. Think about it. When it comes to emotions, kids can immediately tell how anxious we are, and they respond to that energy. For example, if your daughter notices that every single time she comes to you with a problem she's having at school and you go straight into panic mode, she won't feel as comfortable sharing in the future. In fact, based on Jain's advice, she might shut down and start distancing herself. Yikes. Maybe time for us to realize that our kids can handle themselves and their issues without immediately stepping to do damage control. Being there to support their decisions and cheer 'em on with excitement sounds a heck of a lot better than panicked mama bear mode any day!