Covid-19 · Fostering · Parenting

Voices

What is the soundtrack that plays in your head when you have to make a decision?

I recently had a conversation with one of my teens where they talked about their process. One of the things that surprised me is that the first thing that runs through their head is that we will be unhappy with anything they do.

I don’t know where this thought has come from. We have been supportive and encouraging of their friendships and interests. We have stated multiple times that we are on their team and wanting what is best for them.

Yet this voice that causes confusion persists! Where does it come from? Why is it there?

Have you ever tried to make a decision with someone shouting at you to choose a specific way. It is hard to give the other option a fair consideration. Strangely the choice being shouted at them is often the choice that leads to deception and division.

Often times our teens are faced with this situation. The voice in their head is screaming what the “OBVIOUS” choice is. They can’t think clearly about any other option.

That voice can come from many sources but one of the prime influencers for many of them is social media. Have you ever looked at how parents are portrayed? Most often what I see is that parents are uninformed fools who must be tolerated but not consulted or informed because “They don’t understand” Sometimes parents are bumbling idiots that wouldn’t do well at all apart from their wise and competent children. The general message is that there is no need to listen to your parents. And don’t even get me started on how foster parents are portrayed…

Shocking? Nope. The trend has been there all along in the angst of the teen years. But kids today have it piped directly into their brain every second of the day. The battle is to balance this and encourage relationships with adults who can help shift the perspective. I am thankful for coaches, teachers, family and friends who are in the battle to change the image of adults for the teen world. Be one of those adults who is building bridges with teens that contradict the stereotype!

Foster children come with the added trauma of parents who have truly failed them. It is a hard message to overwrite.

So we will keep fighting the battle to encourage choices that are made with the input of parents. In this situation they would have had all the same experiences without the crash at the end that resulted in being grounded if they had talked to us first instead of lying. It mostly just makes me sad!

In the midst of the mess

Marny

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