My tween is learning the challenge of honoring a committment.  And I am challenged by his resistance to it.  Old fashioned values would dictate that he play out his baseball season despite a loss of enthusiasm.  He made a committment to the team, after all.  I subscribe to this value even though the path of least resistance – quitting – is so appealing.

Instilling values is perhaps the most challenging part of parenthood.  How does one convince a child to deem an idea as important?  Doesn’t each person decide for himself?

After many heated discussions and failed attempts at persuasion, my son remains staunchly opposed to embracing the value of committment.  Instead of perpetuating the power struggle, I agree to disagree and abandon further discussion.  In doing so, I free up my mind for the wisdom of empathy.  I, too, struggle with committments I’ve made to myself and others.  For example, attendance at meetings, fitness workouts, and hastily-made promises.  Despite my inner struggle, I persist.  Because my parents had the fortitude to instill in me the value of honoring committment, I own it.

I forget that it wasn’t any easier for them than it is for me as a parent.  I voiced my share of disapproval for my parents’ methods.  Though I don’t remember wearing them down, I’m certain they pulled out a hair or two in frustration over my childish attitude.

I tell my son that I’m sorry for the pain this is causing him.  I also decide that I will let him rant and rave to his heart’s content; and I will not respond.  I have nothing new to say, no change of mind.  The negative energy over this issue belongs to him now, not me.  He can try to give it to me, but I will not accept it.  We both have choices.

Q&A (Questions and Actions)

  • What values do you want to share with your children?  Are they worth fighting over?
  • What values do you hold onto that are outdated?
  • What power struggles can you release?
  • Just for today, choose to live in harmony with your family by releasing your attahcment to shared values.
(2) Comments    Full Post   


nursing schools on 28 May, 2010 at 8:22 pm #

What a great resource!

[...] He had his beliefs and was sticking to ‘em.  The boy believed he should be able to quit baseball mid-season.  He believed his parents should let him.  But the boy’s parents disagreed; they were [...]

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