Have you ever stepped back from a situation in your own life and been shocked at what you saw? Unfortunately, I just had this experience. You see, somehow I got into a rut with my teenage daughter. The bulk of my communication with her had become me barking orders at her - clean your room, shovel the cat litter, do your homework, etc. But then this weird thing started happening. Our connection got lost in the mostly one-way conversations. She became cool, even aloof toward me and stopped doing all the sweet things she normally does, like hold my hand when we're walking somewhere together and lean on my shoulder when we sit on the couch.
The lack of warmth was what made me stop and take notice that something had changed. And thank goodness I did notice and was able to ascertain the problem. The day I changed my behavior, she changed hers. We never discussed it, I didn't want her self-conscious about it. But it drove home the importance of maintaining the connection.
As I've mentioned here before, I'm a clean freak and I don't do well with messy kids rooms. And unfortunately both my kids seem to love living in disarray. So, I'm going to work on ignoring the mess in their part of the house. Nothing I do will turn them into neat nicks. But I can do plenty to hasten their departure. In the big picture, they're really good kids. They get good grades, don't mess with drugs and still seem to enjoy our company. I'm vowing to make a concerted effort to ignore some things so I can keep my relationship with them strong. It's like an internal compromise I know will be worth it.
What do you think? Are you any good at these types of compromises?