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is it possible to raise kids that wont resent you when they''re grown up?

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Mrs

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Hey everyone - I''m a new mom already struggling with all of the doubts and concerns I believe most parents worry about with respect to raising well adjusted, happy kids and was wondering if it''s possible to rear kids that don''t one day resent you.

We all must decide what is best for our families and there are some very tricky decisions that need to be made. Ex: to stay home with your kids or be a working mom. How to teach them about money. Where to raise them (near family? in a city or rural environment? etc) . In these cases, many times no one decision is "right" or "wrong." But how do you prevent your kids from thinking as much?

In my case, my mom did NOT stay home - my brother and I had nannies when we were growing up and I DO resent her sometimes for that. I''ve wondered, why didn''t she stay home with us when I know she had the resources to do so had she wanted to.... Especially now that she''s encouraging ME to stay home with my child...

I also know that my brother resents my mom because he feels like my relationship with her is stronger - I think he wonders if she loves me more...

And the two of us both harbor some resentment for the fact that she seems to have focused her life more on her husband''s kids and grandkids than us...

Don''t get me wrong - my mom is a GREAT mom and I love her (and like her!) very very much, but even with our great relationship, I do have some feelings of disappointment with respect to some of the decisions she has made. I don''t focus on those feelings at all and I guess you could say that I forgive her for them, if they''re even things to be forgiven. She''s not perfect and I certainly don''t expect her to be...

Anyway, I''m just wondering if there is anything I can do to prevent my child / children (since we plan to have another one day) from feeling similar disappointments some day?? Or perhaps al I can hope for is for her forgiveness and understanding that I did the best I could...

Thoughts?

Mrs.
 

DivaDiamond007

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Mrs. I struggle with this too. My mom stayed home until my sister and I were in elementary school and then she worked part-time. She moved to full-time shortly thereafter and we went to my Great Aunt''s house after school. Once we were a bit older we were "latchkey kids" - meaning we went home to an empty house. It wasn''t bad because my sis and I are close in age so we would make a snack, watch tv and play until my dad got home and started dinner.

I didn''t really start resenting my mom until I was older. That''s when it become more obvious that there was some favoritism going on in the household, and let''s just say that I wasn''t the favorite. I often tell my DH to never never never let me be like my mom and be so obvious if I like one child more than the other. We only have one (a son) and I know that I will start to worry about this more and more when we add to our family in the future.

I think as a parent you should get to know each of your children and treat them as individuals. I also think that as children grow up you should be talking to them in an age-appropriate manner about how the household is run. My family moved when I was finishing up 6th grade and it was for the better of the family but that was never explained to me and I felt very lost at the time.
 

packrat

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I think it would be hard to not have *something* your kids are resentful of, irritated by etc, when they''re older. No matter how hard you try, you won''t be perfect on some level. You do the best you can and that''s all you can do. I get along w/my parents wonderfully (now, not so much in mid teens) and I consider them friends as well as parents-we hang out, they come to our parties and our friends like them as well. But, I do have issues and things that I do feel resentful of, about growing up, and even now, how things in our relationships are handled.
 

musey

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For what it's worth, I don't really resent my parents. They have some, erm, 'quirks' that bother/annoy/unsettle me (and that inspire me to be different), but I don't resent choices that they made in raising us.

So yes, I think it's possible. I don't know the secret, but I bet that if you always parent with your children's best interests in mind, you have a pretty good shot.
 

neatfreak

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I don't resent my parents at all either. In fact, I think they did a pretty great job. And we didn't grow up with a ton of money or luxuries, nor was my mom a SAHM.

I do think there are a few things that can help you raise children who won't resent you though...these are just my own thoughts on the topic from observation over the years both as a nanny and with my own friends.

1. Don't make your issues with your parents THEIR issues. Just try to do your best by your children-but don't try to compensate for your parents mistakes with you.

2. Don't be an extreme parent. Whether this is a parent who works 90 hours a week or a helicopter parent who is in the child's face all the time-they will resent you.

3. Following on #2: Let your kids be kids! Don't be that parent who won't let their child eat cake at a birthday party because it's not organic. Basically just try to let your kid make their own choices when appropriate- and let them be kids if it won't harm them!

4. Provide guidance when asked or needed, but let your kids fly on their own too. You aren't going to be there for everything when they are an adult- so better start teaching them how to take care of themselves now. They will thank you for it later when they are the only kid who knows how to problem solve in the real world!

5. Tell your kids you love them! I see a lot of child/parent resentment stemming from this-that the parents just didn't tell their children they loved them. So show it and say it!

6. Teach your kids that it's great to be an individual; but when it counts DON'T make them stick out of the crowd because of your own parenting (within reason of course). I.e., my cake example above. Don't avoid buying them something JUST because "all the other kids have it". Sure that's not the reason to buy your kids things every time, but the "right" toy or clothes occasionally can help your child fit in and not feel ostracized. Same thing with the cake; if your kid has to say "my mom won't let me eat non-organic foods" at a birthday party believe me they will resent you later.

7. Everything in moderation! I really think this is key too. If you restrict too many things they will do the opposite and hate you for it. Be reasonable when making rules and make sure to explain to your child when they can't do something/have something **why**.

Anyway...those are the tidbits and themes I see floating around with my friends who really resent their parents...sorry for the randomness-I'm tired!
 

Italiahaircolor

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I do not resent, in any way--shape or form--my parents. I adore them, I am grateful and the older I get the more appreciate them and all they did for me and my sisters.

My mom was a SAHM. She never missed a school preformance, field trip, opportunity to volunteer. She walked me to the bus stop in the morning, and waited for me when the bus dropped me off. She dressed me in the cutest clothes and never denied me the opportunity to explore my interests--even when they were fleeting. She was supportive, hard on me from time to time, and always my biggest fan.

My dad was a hard working doctor. He was always "on call". Missed my birthday parties sometimes...father/daughter dances occasionally. He was a great listener, incredibly supportive, forgiving, and understanding. He worked so hard to provide for us all...built us a home "perfect" for raising a family...including a movie theatre, game room, putting green and so on. We wanted for nothing...emotionally and otherwise. He didn''t have a good childhood, so he always put forth so much effort making sure we knew we were loved, supported and cared for and about.

I was blessed beyond words...the balance in my home was amazing. Not everyday was perfect, and I''m sure in the moment I cursed them...hated them. But, when I look back I wouldn''t change anything.

I think all you can do, as a parent, is love your child. You can do for them what you...and that as they grow, they will gain appreciation for that. You sound like a thoughtful, loving parent...you''ll do just fine.
 

icekid

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Date: 4/7/2009 7:50:48 PM
Author: musey
For what it''s worth, I don''t really resent my parents. They have some, erm, ''quirks'' that bother/annoy/unsettle me (and that inspire me to be different), but I don''t resent choices that they made in raising us.
haha... sound a lot like my parents. They''re mostly great, if not a bit annoying in some respects. My mom did not stay at home with us, and I never for one second felt any negativity toward her for this. For that matter, my father chose not to stay at home with us, as well
I know my parents love us and did what they felt best for us, always (even if they were wrong once in a while.)

eeeeeek... I hope my children will not resent me for having a career and my own life


I am not a parent yet, and I am certain I will make mistakes when I am... and hopefully my children will realize that I, too, am a human!
 

swimmer

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I would just offer -accept that when they are teens and finding their own way, that there will be some pain. Separation and individuation is hard stuff. Conversely, know that anytime a teen girl says that her mom is her best friend, as any teacher (or other close observer of hundreds of teens) can tell you, there are restraining orders in the future.

When they are grown up they will realize that Freud is wrong; not everything is Mom''s fault. And if you think it is, you need a new therapist.
 

lyra

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Not many women have the option to be a stay at home mom these days, and I think that creates a lot of stress on women in general. I feel very blessed that I was able to stay home, but I don''t think that I would have done things much differently if I had worked. You have basic rules that you live by, we all do, and you do the best you can with what you have.

I had an oldest daughter who was an absolute angel, and a younger daughter who was quite the opposite! Lines would get blurred because the younger one wouldn''t understand why she''d get punishments (removals of privileges) while the older one didn''t. Children lack reasoning ability, and to my knowledge, some still don''t have it by the age of 18 or older!
I think my younger daughter will always feel like we treated her sister better, simply because her sister never did anything to get in trouble! Not fair, but like I said, kids don''t see the reason and logic until they''re way older.

Growing up, my dad worked full time days and my mom full time nights (as a nurse). That was the best they could do since daycare options were very scarce back in the day if you didn''t have family to help out. Money was scarce, so paid help was out of the question. I never resented either parent, but my brother and sister feel differently. I think it all depends on the child. In my husband''s family, his brother feels very resentful of his parents and he''s 47! My husband is the middle child, and he feels just fine. At some point you have to just accept things as they are/were and move on IMO. Talk to your mom about this stuff and about how it''s making you question your own parenting abilities. Try to relax too! Don''t strive for perfection, you''ll never find it. Enjoy your kids, because as every mother knows, they grow up so quickly! Good luck!
 

zhuzhu

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My parents both worked full time while I was growing up. I suppose I could resent them for that too. However I think it is so important for grown-ups to know better not to blame parents for everything/anything that is wrong with you. Parents are just human and all they could be to provide the best they can for the children. As long as there is love and efforts for the children, they had just as much right to chose a career (as oppose to a full time mom) as any one of us.

Regarding favoring one child over another, I think it is difficult for parents to truly NOT have favorites. They SHOULD NOT SHOW it, but human nature definitely is at play within any family.

I know I did not really answer your questions, but just want to thank you for bringing this up for us to think about!
 

LaraOnline

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I think that as you have children of your own, you realise that mums are just people struggling to do their best in the world... and eventually you get off her back. Let's face it, 20 years of paying for kids, feeding kids, taking kids' backchat and wiping kids' *ss, does mum *always* have to have an enthusiastic smile on her face as well?

I think I felt a massive chip fall off immediately after labour. Holy cow! Even a mother who gives her child up for adoption right then and there deserves a gold star, in my book.

That said, my mother resented my grandmother for smothering her with love. Grandma gave her everything, gave up so many things for my mum. Grandma washed BY HAND for twenty years rather than get a washing machine, to pay for all the things that she wanted mum to have, such as her own horse in the city! Grandma made my mum wear a bow in her hair.

My mum, to this day, is down on grandma because grandma wouldn't give her a bicycle.


Get over it mum!

In response, my mum was much more 'hands off'. Okay, so we dragged ourselves up. I never got a bow in my hair!
All's well that ends well. She worked at her payng job, a lot. She went out at night a lot, and followed up on personal interests. She even joined the local municipal council! She had relationships (widowed at an early age) She still did an absolute truckload of kid-related work, though. She still spent a lot of money on raising us. And does she love us, Oh, yes she does!!!

Mothers are people, too, and children really have to realise that eventually.
I hope my kids do, in the end...
 

ksinger

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Disclaimer: I''m 46 and have no kids. Missed that boat. HOWEVER, every subsequent word is channeled from my mother, who raised a child alone in the 60s and 70s. In my mid-30s we had extensive discussions of why she made the parenting choices she did, and what her parenting philosophy was. Sad in a way that I didn''t get to use any of them. For the record, I never resented her, even as a kid. But it wasn''t because she fretted about it, I can tell you. LOL! Heck, I wasn''t ALLOWED to show resentment! She''d say, "Get that LOOK off your face right now!" And you did! Seriously, in hindsight, every step that woman took was golden. I admired her immensely for that focus and for keeping her eye on the big picture.

So I can see her taking a sip of coffee, a drag on a cigarette (and if there is anything I ever resented, it was THOSE), shaking her head, and saying, "Well, if she''s worried about whether her kids are going to resent her or not, she''s already lost."


I''ve seen this more times than I can tell you. Parents making their choices on how to rear children based on their need to be LIKED, or whether their kids are HAPPY. Big mistake. Love your kids, say no and MEAN IT, teach them that while they''re important, they are NOT the bright hot center of any universe except their own, and don''t make your own decisions based on your need to be liked, and for God''s sake don''t try to be their friend. It ain''t a popularity contest. Children don''t have the emotional capacity to meet your complex adult needs. They do however, have an inate ability to sense when you''re leaning on them emotionally and know instinctively that you''re putting the cart before the horse. They WILL resent that. Kids like to know their parents are in control of the situation - meaning, especially when they''re young, they don''t want to see you sweat, or see any of your angst. Later you can let them see your complex flaws, but seeing that too young is upsetting for them.

On a personal note, I''ve seen the damage that worrying about being liked can do. One friend has an 18 year old who will not speak to him, and another friend is on the path. And all because they''re trying to meet their emotional needs through their children.

There''s more that I could channel, but work beckons. I would suggest reading this. It covers it pretty well to my way of thinking. It is how I was raised, and I suspect it was the way some of us older people on here were raised.

The Kindergarchy
 

steph72276

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KSinger, great advice and I feel the exact same way! I am not there to be his best friend. I am there to make sure he grows up to be an honest, responsible, independent person. There were times I was so mad at my parents for not letting me do everything other kids got to do (like go to the movies with boys in middle school, go to parties, etc). I thought they were unfair and somehow trying to ruin my social life, but when I got older (and saw some of my friends end up pregnant), I thanked them for caring and not just letting me get away with whatever I wanted to. Now that I''m grown up, my mom IS my best friend....however, in middle and high school she was def. not a friend, but she was in control and I listened to her! I am very grateful I had parents that actually cared and did the right thing so that I would turn out the right way and make good life choices. I hope to be the same way with my son.
 

Sabine

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My mom and I were just talking about this the other day! As a soon to be new parent, I''m struggling with some of the choices I''ll have to make. I was talking to my mom about how she did a LOT of things that are considered wrong, bad, or even dangerous when parenting us (or lack there of I should say), like leaving us home alone at an early age, letting use use the stove, etc., but at the same time, I think I gained an amazing sense of independence and autonomy at a young age because of it, which has always been something I''m proud of.

I understand that my mom made the decisions that she did because she thought it was what was best and that she was doing the best she could. I think talking to your parents when you''re older to try to understand their decisions will help. Even though I went through a really rough teenage girl stage where I violently hated my mother, she and I have a really strong relationship now because I understand what motivations were behind each of our behavior.

Now my dad, on the other hand, although he and I have grown closer, there are still a lot of things I don''t understand about the choices he made. I know these things stand in the way of our relationship, but I don''t feel comfortable addressing him about it yet, so I kinda push those feelings down whenever they interfere with our current relationship. But I know if he were to come to me and try to explain why he did the things he did, or even acknowledged that it may not have been the right thing in retrospect (although no one can know that ahead of time), it would go a long way. So again, I think just talking and explaining why you did the things you did is the way to go.
 

fieryred33143

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You really don't know how your kids are going to grow up and what kind of relationship they are going to have with you. You can treat them all the same exact way and have completely different outcomes.

Growing up my mother and I did not get along. I had a very nasty attitude towards her and I'm ashamed to admit that I made her cry way too much. I never brought friends over because I was embarrassed of her. I did the whole drop me off two blocks away from the school thing. And we fought!!! Oh man did we fight. I couldn't wait to just get out of the house and away from her. I remember the day that my mom dropped me off in the dorms. She had to leave the same day because my uncle did us the favor of driving and had to work that evening. The moment the elevator door closed, I broke down in tears because I just didn't want to be away from her. I begged her to let me go home. I missed her that much. Now, she is truly my best friend and I love her with every piece of my being. I talk to her at least 4 times a day and when she visits me or I visit her, I'm attached to her hip the entire time.

My brothers on the other hand were really close to my mom growing up. Those were her boys. They used to beg her to chaperone school dances and go on field trips with them (I'm talking about high school too) because they loved having her around. They gave her lots of hugs and kisses. The minute they moved out, that relationship changed. They never call her. They speak badly to her. When they come home to visit, they're never there.

The difference between them and me (besides age: 7/8 years apart) is that I appreciate every choice my mom has made because I understand it more. I was older when she had to make her choices so she was able to explain it to me better. The years that my mom struggled were the years that my brothers were too young to understand. The only thing they remember is growing up in a really nice house. They don't remember everything before it and therefore don't appreciate it.

It's really a gamble. Just be the best parent you know how to be and hope for the best.

ETA: I should also mention that my mom was a SAHM up until my father passed. Then she worked for the school system so she would work from 7 to 3. I still felt like she was a SAHM though because she never skipped a beat, even during the period when she was working 3 jobs. It still felt like she was always around. I don't know how she did it...I think she just never slept
 

Bia

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Yes, because EVERY parent makes mistakes. No matter how good of a parent they are.

I am extremely close to my parents. Growing up, I had the best of everything: a big home, nice cars, vacations, big birthday parties, a mom who was there for everything. Then, when I turned 13, my parents lost everything. It was a rude awakening for my brother and I. We went from not having a care in the world, to seeing our parents struggle to keep a roof over* our heads. It took a few years but my parents were able to regroup and came out on the other side, nice and clean. However, those 'hard' years took place when I was in puberty and I was having a rough time just being me. Yea, it was hard, BUT no matter what was happening to them, they made sure we knew that they were there for us and that nothing came before our family. And going through what we did made us a stronger unit.

That's why, as long as you let your children know—when they are children, not trying when they are adults— that they come first, AND SHOW IT, they won't grow up resenting you. They'll know you did the best you could. Whether you give them everything (materialistic I mean), or have nothing to give, as long as you continuously show them love and support, they'll grow up feeling that they had everything.

ETA: Disclaimer: this does not apply if you give birth to badddd @$$ kids!

 

purrfectpear

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Bottom line, it doesn''t really matter. Some kids will rebel, some won''t. Some will worship you, some will feel resentment. Mostly it depends less on your parenting and more on who they are and their personalities.

If it''s consolation, it all turns around the moment they have their own kids anyway. All of a sudden they "get" who you are and what sacrifices you made
 

dragonfly411

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Mrs - to at least give you some relief, I do not resent my parents in any way. I''m young at 23. My parents both worked. They taught us right from wrong. I had some magically instilled fear of them so that if they counted 1 I would stop misbehaving. Never had any kind of REAL punishment in my life, save when I failed math, which wasn''t my fault, I was horrible at it and was later tutored for 3 years. I just didn''t grasp it. They grounded me for not getting at least a D lol. I have to admit, they didn''t teach me a ton about finances, but it is because they spent most of their life learning about them themselves, so I harbor no resentment there, it is something I''m teaching myself. I think if you raise your children in a way in which you can help yourselves to relate to each other, and you can enjoy just being yourselves, it will work. My parents were younger, and they were the cool parents lol. But I love the idea of being very carefree as a mother, like my mom was, and playing great music and letting my kids sing with me, and teaching them the ways of the world and letting them learn and grow. Seems to have worked here.
 

Elmorton

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Not a parent yet, and I think this fear is one of the biggest things I''m worried about in terms of becoming a parent.

But, I''m really comforted by this advice: One of my good friends is a social worker/therapist who works with at risk children, and she says there are two things, above all else, that a parent needs to do - 1) Make sure your child knows he or she is loved 2) Give your child boundaries. My friend says that every parent will undoubtedly mess up, and there are things that are outside of our control, but if you can get these two things more or less right, your kid has the best chances of being a well-adjusted, happy adult.

These two things were pretty much the basis of all of my child psych courses in college, too (though that message sometimes got muddled in text-speak
).

FWIW, my parents didn''t even really accomplish 2), but I love them (and always have), and as an adult, I have a great respect them, even when I''m frustrated or disagree with their choices.
 

AmberGretchen

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I want to ditto those who said to make sure your child knows he/she is loved, for themselves, no matter what. Not for accomplishments or for being the person YOU want them to be, but for themselves.

My parents had A LOT of issues while they were raising me, some of which were a result of their own childhoods, some of which came from external circumstances in their lives or just from their personalities. Today though, I''m able to be close to my mom, because she was able to work through those issues and I know she loves me and is proud of me, even if she can''t always express it. My dad, on the other hand, never got past needing me to be the person he wants me to be, and more importantly, the person he can brag to his friends about. We aren''t that close and I don''t think we ever will be. He has 4 children total from his various marriages and I don''t think he''ll ever be very close with any of them, mostly for this reason.

So I would say unconditional love is the #1, and everything else is negotiable/open to interpretation.

I also liked the advice to get to know each child as an individual, because they will each need different things, and its important, as has been said here, not to show blatant favoritism - that can be very hurtful.
 

Maisie

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Its always good to remember that ''mother'' does not equal ''perfect''. We don''t get issued with a handbook on how to raise kids. Its all done by good intentions and hard work.

We are all flawed in one way or another. We will mess up. As long as you realise that, and do all you can to rectify the thing that went wrong, you will be fine.

I had a tough childhood but I never blamed my mother for any of it till I was an adult. All of a sudden I wasn''t seeing her as a daughter sees her parent - I was seeing her as one adult to another. I really did get a shock when I started to blame her for the life choices she made. Her choices impacted on us children in a big way. She let her husband hit us and never tried to stop him.

I am a different type of parent to her. I keep my kids safe. She let us down on that one. I don''t have a great relationship with my mother now. I don''t miss her at all.

I would hope my children will miss me when they grow up and move away. Not in an unhealthy way, but in a wistful nostalgic way.
 

Mrs

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Thanks for all the replies everyone!

You''ve all made some great points. What ksinger wrote especially resonated with me. I completely agree that kids should NOT be leaned on for emotional support and that a parent who cares about being "liked" by his/her kids will certainly get in trouble for it.

I also agree strongly with what Elmorton wrote - love and boundaries are key.

I''m relatively confidant that I will be a good parent to my kids when they''re young, I think perhaps I''m more concerned about transitioning the relationship when my kids are adults since I''ve seen my brother''s relationship with my mom kind of deteriorate... I guess only time will tell!
 

Aloros

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I think it''s entirely possible! I adore my parents and I still call them at least 1/week. My dad works full-time, and my mom stayed at home - but she was also very often busy. I know she ran her own business a couple of times. I don''t resent either of them. Despite all of our busy schedules (my siblings and I were into a lot of activities), we nearly always ate dinner together and spent family time on weekends. They made sure we knew we were loved and guided us through growing up.

Neither of them are perfect, but they are wonderful people and I hold them in the highest esteem. I still often turn to them for advice. I know they will always be there for me, and though we may not always agree, they have my best interests at heart.
 

bee*

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I definitely think it''s possible. I don''t resent my parents at all and I think that they did a great job raising my sisters and I. Sure there have been times when I''d rather have been anywhere else than home but that was more to do with me than them. My parents both worked and tried to give us everything we needed, both emotionally and financially. I really respect them.
 

KimberlyH

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A big ditto to ksingers'' post.

I have not always liked or agreed with my parents, but I have never resented them. They are good, honest, hardworking, and loving and they did their best to raise my sister and I to be the same. A child who expects more is expecting too much.

As an adult my parents are among my closest friends, and I so appreciate who they are and all they have taught me.
 

kittybean

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Mrs, I think it''s very possible. My brother (the one that''s grown up--the other one''s still a high-schooler) and I don''t resent our parents at all. We are very happy with the way we were raised. We got a lot of love and a lot of rules, and just the right amount of "spoiling" in between. We were never allowed everything we wanted, but we did get a fair amount of what we wanted.

On the SAHM v. working mom issue: my mom was a working mom until I was about 16. She was amazing at her job, and held a high-level corporate position despite a constant battle with migraines and other illnesses. I had nannies growing up, and I never really resented the fact that they were the ones there when I got home from school. I was really proud of my mom for her successes, and I think I was inspired to do extremely well in school and to work hard because of it. I think I took a lot of my drive from her. I''m glad she chose to continue working; I think it made me who I am today. This is not to say that I wouldn''t have liked her to be a SAHM, but I wanted to emphasize the positive effect her continuing to be a working mom had on me.

After she retired when I was 16, we didn''t always get along. I was a moody teenager. She was suddenly bored and not sure what to do with her time. She needed to manage someone; I didn''t want it to be me. Once I left for college, the bad feelings kind of dissipated, leaving a very strong friendship. Today we are very close, and there are no feelings of resentment from me!

Mrs, I wish you the best in raising your beautiful daughter. As Elmorton and you pointed out, love and boundaries will be crucial. I hope you and she can have as wonderful a friendship as my mom and I have once your daughter is grown.
 

soocool

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 10, 2009
Messages
2,827
Date: 4/9/2009 12:20:40 AM
Author: kittybean
Mrs, I think it''s very possible. My brother (the one that''s grown up--the other one''s still a high-schooler) and I don''t resent our parents at all. We are very happy with the way we were raised. We got a lot of love and a lot of rules, and just the right amount of ''spoiling'' in between. We were never allowed everything we wanted, but we did get a fair amount of what we wanted.

On the SAHM v. working mom issue: my mom was a working mom until I was about 16. She was amazing at her job, and held a high-level corporate position despite a constant battle with migraines and other illnesses. I had nannies growing up, and I never really resented the fact that they were the ones there when I got home from school. I was really proud of my mom for her successes, and I think I was inspired to do extremely well in school and to work hard because of it. I think I took a lot of my drive from her. I''m glad she chose to continue working; I think it made me who I am today. This is not to say that I wouldn''t have liked her to be a SAHM, but I wanted to emphasize the positive effect her continuing to be a working mom had on me.

After she retired when I was 16, we didn''t always get along. I was a moody teenager. She was suddenly bored and not sure what to do with her time. She needed to manage someone; I didn''t want it to be me. Once I left for college, the bad feelings kind of dissipated, leaving a very strong friendship. Today we are very close, and there are no feelings of resentment from me!

Mrs, I wish you the best in raising your beautiful daughter. As Elmorton and you pointed out, love and boundaries will be crucial. I hope you and she can have as wonderful a friendship as my mom and I have once your daughter is grown.
Kittybean, this is where I feel I am with my 16 yr old right now. I stopped working full-time about a year after I had my daughter due to a company reorganization in which I was not willing to move to another state. So I became a SAHM and kept my daughter busy (I guess to keep myself busy) and getting her involved in many different things, music, sports, crafts, etc. At a young age she always asked me to leave instead of staying to watch her participate in all her extracurricular activities. I began working part time when she began school and also volunteered a great deal in her school, which she did not mind. In fact, she was very proud and happy to see me volunteering as many of her friends'' moms also volunteered. I stopped working again a couple of years ago as I was layed off and just didn''t want to work while my daughter was in high school, but I felt like she was pushing me away. Now as a sophomore we have had blow outs about her schoolwork even though she maintains very good grades (always on the honor roll). I have backed off and given her more space, but with rules and limitations and we seem to be getting along better. I hope that once she leaves for college we will be able to form a much closer relationship as you and your mom did, because my daughter is one very wonderful, smart, funny, loving, girl.

My sister always tells me that I dote on my daughter since our mom never paid any attention to me. In fact, my mom picked on me for a lot of things, like my extreme thinness, which made me resent her. Instead, my mom doted on my older sis and I resented her also growing up. My dad sensed my being left out and so he doted on me and I became a "daddy''s girl". But my dad never left my sister out. He also encouraged her to go along with us on fishing trips, hikes, bike rides, trips to the park, etc. My mom''s reply was that my sister had better things to do with her time. Well, my mom passed away a few years ago and while the resentment has long gone, I just never felt particularly close to her, but I did cry when she died. Perhaps because I felt bad that we didn''t try to mend the relationship. But the good thing is that my sister and I became extremely close just about the time she was getting married. The three of us (dad, sis, and I) talk to each other everyday and hang out together as much as possible. My sister has 3 sons and each one has turned out great and treat my sis with great love & respect. She in fact has given me a lot of suggestions andsupport when it comes to my daughter. My nephews are also very close to my daughter and I love the fact that she can turn to them for boy advice or anything else since she is an only child.
 

vespergirl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 29, 2007
Messages
5,497
Date: 4/8/2009 10:44:00 AM
Author: purrfectpear
Bottom line, it doesn''t really matter. Some kids will rebel, some won''t. Some will worship you, some will feel resentment. Mostly it depends less on your parenting and more on who they are and their personalities.

If it''s consolation, it all turns around the moment they have their own kids anyway. All of a sudden they ''get'' who you are and what sacrifices you made
Hmm ... I have to say that I don''t agree with this sentiment. Growing up, I always had a great relationship with my dad, and a terrible one with my mom (she was physically & emotionally abusive, but she doesn''t think that she treated us badly at all). I moved out when I turned 17, and never looked back (I''m 32 now). Even though I still have a great relationship with my dad, I still have not forgiven my mother for the way she treated us, and probably never will.

In fact, when I had my own child 3 years ago, I became even angrier at her. People kept saying what PP mentioned above, but I had the opposite experience - once I had a child of my own, I became even angrier at her for treating us the way she did, and knew there was no real excuse for hurting a child (my mother used to blame her PMS for physically abusing us). I could never imagine doing the things to my son that she did to us, so I think the old adage that you appreciate your parents'' flaws when you have your own children doesn''t apply to many people, especially if you know that you are in fact doing a better job than your parents did.

Regarding the OP, I know for myself that I do have a lot of concern on this same issue, since I harbor such resentment towards my own mother - but maybe the fact that I am so careful and conscious of the decisions that I make while raising my son and the way that I treat him, that hopefully he will have pleasant memories of his childhood & be close to me when he is grown.
 

elrohwen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 20, 2008
Messages
5,522
I totally agree with a lot of the other posters when they say that as long as you keep the kid''s best interest at heart, you''ll do well. I think my mom was particularly good at letting me go and make my own decisions as I got older. She was very realistic about the fact that I would be in college and totally out of her control, so she let go a lot when I was a teen. I was also a good kid and proved I could handle the responsibility. I guess it just shows that you have to be flexible and adapt to what the kids can handle. It''s sad to see parents who are really restrictive with kids who are so good. The kids deserve some freedom! Then you also see parents who give way too much freedom to kids who cannot handle it, and that doesn''t work either.

For what it''s worth, my mom worked full time and I never ever resented her for it. I probably thought all moms worked until I was at least in elementary school. I think I appreciated her more because I didn''t like daycare and always loved to see her at the end of the day. It never occured to me that she had any choice in whether or not she worked.
 

TravelingGal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2004
Messages
17,193
Date: 4/9/2009 5:15:32 PM
Author: vespergirl

Date: 4/8/2009 10:44:00 AM
Author: purrfectpear
Bottom line, it doesn''t really matter. Some kids will rebel, some won''t. Some will worship you, some will feel resentment. Mostly it depends less on your parenting and more on who they are and their personalities.

If it''s consolation, it all turns around the moment they have their own kids anyway. All of a sudden they ''get'' who you are and what sacrifices you made
Hmm ... I have to say that I don''t agree with this sentiment. Growing up, I always had a great relationship with my dad, and a terrible one with my mom (she was physically & emotionally abusive, but she doesn''t think that she treated us badly at all). I moved out when I turned 17, and never looked back (I''m 32 now). Even though I still have a great relationship with my dad, I still have not forgiven my mother for the way she treated us, and probably never will.

In fact, when I had my own child 3 years ago, I became even angrier at her. People kept saying what PP mentioned above, but I had the opposite experience - once I had a child of my own, I became even angrier at her for treating us the way she did, and knew there was no real excuse for hurting a child (my mother used to blame her PMS for physically abusing us). I could never imagine doing the things to my son that she did to us, so I think the old adage that you appreciate your parents'' flaws when you have your own children doesn''t apply to many people, especially if you know that you are in fact doing a better job than your parents did.

Regarding the OP, I know for myself that I do have a lot of concern on this same issue, since I harbor such resentment towards my own mother - but maybe the fact that I am so careful and conscious of the decisions that I make while raising my son and the way that I treat him, that hopefully he will have pleasant memories of his childhood & be close to me when he is grown.
I think the key point that PP makes is "the sacrifices you made," i.e., she''s talking about loving parents who did their best (although they may not be perfect.)

My old boss used to have some issues with her mom into her mid 30s. At 40, she had her one and only son. I remember her crying while talking about her son and saying she told her mom, "Oh my god. Did you love me THIS much?" They have a great relationship now.

I always knew my mom loved me. I had no idea HOW much until I had one of my own.
 
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