Your kids are spreading their wings and starting to head out on their own… Are you ready? Do you struggle to know how to parent teens at home and young adults away from home at the same time? Is it a challenge to find a good balance between boundaries and freedom?

Well today we are talking all about this season of parenting and how you can influence, lead, and pray for your kids who are on their way to independence. To help me with this topic is my friend Brenda Yoder, author of the book Fledge, as well as a counselor, educator, mother, and grandmother. She calls this season of life “fledging,” which means to prepare for independence.

In this conversation, Brenda and I talk about why we have to parent young adults differently than teens, the importance of not “stealing the struggle” from our children, relationship-based parenting versus performance-based parenting, learning to let go of the desire to control behavior, shame, and so much more. This is a must-listen episode for all parents!

Resources mentioned in this episode:

My Key Takeaways:

1) You can’t parent your young adult children the same way you did when they were teens. As our kids cross the threshold from being teens to young adults, they are stepping out on their own and starting careers, college, and in many cases moving away from your home. Your parenting style needs to shift as well. You can’t have the same rules you used to have for your children because your level of control and influence has changed as they enter this new stage of life.

2) Don’t steal the struggle. This is a phrase that Brenda uses often and it captures an important lesson we must learn to parent our children and release them into adulthood. We need to let our children make mistakes. That means we need to step back and let them figure things out for themselves, or learn how to fix something without us stepping in. It can be difficult to fight the urge to protect your children and make everything better, but we need to allow our kids to make mistakes and learn to be independent. We have to resist rescuing. Giving our children the freedom to mess up and clean up the mess on their own is actually one of the best gifts we can give them.

3) Don’t be overly enmeshed in your child’s lives. From the time our kids are infants, they are entwined with us. We meet their every need and provide for them. But as they grow up, that changes. Whether you have a young adult child now or your kids are still young, it’s important to remember that God intends for our kids to be a separate being from us. That means that the ultimate goal of parenting is to be sure your children can live a life that is not dependent on us.

About Brenda:

Brenda Yoder is a speaker, author, Licensed Mental Health Counselor, and life coach whose passion is encouraging others when life doesn’t fit the storybook image. Her new book, Fledge: Launching Your Kids Without Losing Your Mind is a personal handbook for parents in the season of raising and releasing kids. Brenda is also former teacher and school counselor and was twice awarded the Touchstone Award for teachers. Her ministry and podcast, Life Beyond the Picket Fence, is found at brendayoder.com where she writes about faith, life, and family beyond the storybook image. Brenda is a wife and mom of four children, ranging from college students to adults, and lives on a farm in Indiana.

 

 

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