The greatest delight I have as a father is seeing my son so far ahead of me when I was his age. Kids still need to live life and get bumped and bruised along the way, after all that is how they grow. We want to shield them from pain, but we inadvertently stunt their ability to learn and grow from it. I believe it is our own desire to deflect pain and deep seeded hurt that cause us to kick the pain down the entire road of our life. With our kids, tough love can be the best love even though it hurts us the parent so very much.
Preparing our kids for life comes with dealing with pain. So often we want to give them the speech of do not make the same mistakes that I made. Or I am trying to save you from the pain that I went through. Don’t you know that it is wisdom to learn from other peoples folly. Yet, we were not wise and followed the path frequently traveled and got nicked. What we do with that nick is the teaching moment.
When we screw up, I believe it is in everyone’s interest for the parent to own his or her mistake and explained how the dealt with the problem, be it positive or negative. That is the real parent / child conversation that does not scream hypocrisy. It simply states there is a cause and effect to choices. Some of the effects can be dire or dangerous. Either way, the consequence is very real and something that a parent cannot shield their child from.
Sometimes when a child can see our broken and see what it was that sustained us through those tough times, that is a moment the child is not likely to forget. in the same way, if we deflect and ignore the 800 pound gorilla in the room, then that too will be something that our child will not forget.
Find it, own it, come to peace with it and move on. How we find it is introspection that does not spiral into self-pity. Own it is claiming that it is what it is, find what truth is needed to be found. Expose any lie that gets hurled by the accuser that is wrapped in deception. Come to peace with the one thing that said His yoke was light and move on in freedom.