I was feeling frustrated the other day… & lonely…. & taken advantage of…. not new things for me… but I was revisiting… So I was sharing this with a friend (who, really, honestly, was just trying to make me feel better)… and she started pointing out all of the people that I know who would (theoretically) be there for me if I needed anything. In my head though, two things were going on… 1. I started brooding about being “wrong” about how I felt and 2. progressively being more frustrated by the fact that I was circling nowhere trying to explain myself.
Between this experience and a blog my good friend wrote today (firstname.lastname@example.org), I was thinking about how often we do this to our children. “Things could be worse” we tell them. “Ahhh, you’ll be over it by tomorrow” “You don’t really mean that”, “don’t let those words hurt you.. they are just words”…. I wonder how often my kids feel like I (we) are telling them that the way they feel is wrong. They aren’t wrong… sometimes the small things ARE the big things…. Sometimes all that matters is how we feel about things.
Not that there is anything wrong with encouragement; we all need to be encouraged. BUT as major(?) influences on young lives, we need to be careful about what they hear us saying. Sometimes what they need is for us to just be quiet and listen. Even if the feelings change in the morning…. it’s ok that they feel that way right now.