How I'm Letting Go of My Teenagers This School Year
by Grace For Moms
August 11th, 2016

My seventeen-and-a-half-year-old daughter was just picked up for a semi-date by a boy I know. I was standing in the house, he was outside on the other side of the screen door. I’ll call him ‘Steve’.

Me: “Steve?”

Steve: “Yeah, Ms. K.?”

Me: “Please don’t kill her.”

Steve: “Okay, Ms. K.”

And so it goes. And that is what my parenting has come to.

You have no idea what a large leap this is from the uber-controlling mother I was the first decade-and-a-half of my children’s lives.

My children are good kids. I trust them. And they are super close to being adults and on their own.

So as we head into another school year – my son’s junior year and my daughter’s senior and final year of high school – I have continued my mantra {the one I wrote about early in the summer} let them go.

Here’s what that will look like this school year for our little family of three:

They will drive themselves to school most days.

If they want to go somewhere in my/our car, they will ask me {not just tell me}, but I will more than likely say yes as much as I can. No point not to.

They will continue to earn their own grades. I already went to high school, thankyouverymuch. I do not need or want to go again. If they fail, they fail. If they succeed, we get to celebrate their own victories. By the way, I’ve let my kids “earn their own grades” {meaning hands-off homework-wise} pretty much since they started middle school. Seriously.

If they want to go to college, they can apply. Yes, I will go on college visits with them, and yes, if they’re stumped with a question or two, I’ll help; and yes, I will totally pray for them and give them advice when they ask; but they must fill out their own college applications, they must send them in. I did it for myself; they can do their own too.

If they want a job, they can get a job. They do their own laundry. They either make their own or buy their own lunches.

If they lose something, they can replace it. Heck, one of my kids just lost his/her social security card, and I made him/her go down to the social security office on his/her own and apply for a new one. ALONE. And the kid did it beautifully.

I will continue to require church attendance, but even in that…they go to my former church {their lifetime church}, and usually not with me to mine. This makes me sad, but I’d rather they attend church willingly than begrudgingly.

Here’s my point. These are the years that we get them ready to handle being on their own. If in their teen years, we are still doing everything for them, we are not actually helping them, we are hurting them. It is now that we give them more responsibility, as we are their safe place when they stumble and fall. It is now that we empower them to win in life. And we are the place where love will brush them off and sit them back up and send them back out to try again.

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6 

This school year, how can you let your teen go or empower them just a bit more?

Written by Elisabeth Klein Fisher for Grace for Moms. Original Link Here. Used with permission. 

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This post was originally published for Grace For Moms and is used here with permission.

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