As a new Mom, everyone warned me about the terrible twos and the tantrums that I would have to endure. Later everyone talked about the struggles of the teenage years, dealing with hormones and rapidly changing moods. No one ever warned me about the struggles of dealing with young adult children, and the struggle is very real.
Dealing with your twenty-somethings requires more patience than ever before. College, relationships, jobs, cars, finances, and life begin to get very complicated in your twenties. As a parent I struggle with wanting to help my child and realizing that I have to let her discover many of these things on her own. Walking that fine line of letting go, but still trying to be there for your child can be extremely complicated.
Let’s face it, as parents we all have dreams for our children, and it can be a struggle to let go of those expectations. What do you say when your child comes home and says “I’m not going to school anymore”, or “I’m moving in with him”? The reality sets in, they are adults now, and they do have the right to make their own decisions – no matter what we think. Raising a toddler or dealing with a sulky teenager is a piece of cake compared to the challenge of watching your child make a decision that you don’t agree with.
Raising a twenty-something is not all bad. Developing this new ‘adult’ relationship can be fun. I love sitting down with my daughter and sharing good conversation over a glass of wine. I love hearing her point of view on current events. She teaches me about current culture and together we compare how things were when I was young to how they are today. She actually enjoys spending time together, and for that I am very grateful.
I have learned that raising a child in their twenties takes more patience than ever before. I have learned to keep quiet if I don’t like her current boyfriend, and just hope that things won’t get too serious. I have leaned that if I simply listen, without judgement, that she will eventually figure out the path that is right for her, and mostly I have learned to be grateful for the relationship we have. It isn’t always easy to get there, but it is worth it.