In the last blog, I mentioned that we often have a need to forgive our own kids. I would like to say more about this.
When we decide to have children, we expect it to be a joyous experience. But there are times when it is anything but. Our kids can cause us pain and anguish right from the babyhood stage all the way through to late adulthood.
As with all our relationships, it is often necessary to apply Radical Forgiveness to our children, no matter the age or stage.
It may seem odd, or even non-parent-like, to think about the ways in which we need to forgive our kids… it feels somehow like a betrayal. But, when we acknowledge the ways in which our children have hurt us, and realize how our children are our healing angels for those hurts to be healed, it can make a phenomenal difference in your relationship with your children.
We expect the teenage years to be trying, and they often are. It is part of their development task at this stage to be rebellious, difficult and independent minded, but that doesn’t mean we should not do Radical Forgiveness on them when the situation demands it.
Remember, we do the forgiveness for ourselves, not for them. But in the process of doing a Radical Forgiveness worksheet or the 21-Day Program for Forgiving Your Kids, you may discover that he or she was teaching you something about yourself. Kids are great for reflecting your own shadow stuff. That realization alone can change everything.
If your child seems ungrateful, ask yourself if you are also at times ungrateful for what you have or for the people who do things for you. Then love yourself for being ungrateful. Your child will pick up on your willingness to love yourself for that and will likely stop being ungrateful because the lesson is learned.
Do your kids refuse to “do what you think is best?” How controlling were your parents? Have you forgiven them yet? Do the forgiveness work on your parents and see what a difference it makes in how your kids relate to you and how you respond to them.
But sometimes the pain of the teen years pale into insignificance compared to the suffering that many adult children inflict on their parents. This can take the form of rejection, abandonment, abuse, control, preventing contact with grandchildren and so on. The older the parent gets, the worse it can become, as the roles reverse and the child becomes the parent and the parent becomes the child.
When and if you see signs of toxicity entering into your relationship with a child who is now an adult, you need to recognize this might be a very important healing opportunity for you.
Do some worksheets immediately available for free in Colin’s Cafe. Or if you’re relationship is seriously toxic, do the 21-Day Program for Forgiving Your Kids as soon as possible. It will open up the energy between you in a way that is little short of magical. You will be amazed at what might happen.