Checkmate-River City Counseling

In my fifteen years teaching and counseling in elementary schools, I interacted with a couple thousand parents, with all sorts of positive and negative characteristics. At the end of the day, one of my least favorite is the “my kid can do no wrong” kind of parent. And if he does, it’s clearly due to the influence of others. On his own he would never do anything wrong.

The exhaustion increases when Susie’s parents blame other kids and kids’ parents in the presence of Susie. She knows she’s made a mistake, but it’s ok because it’s really not her fault. She also knows she won’t have consequences at home. And do you think Susie will be perfect in the future…

My favorite type of parent is the one that will support you in their kid’s presence. Even if they completely disagree with you, they’ve got to have your back when he’s around. Then, they talk to you privately. Everything goes better.

This week, I waved the red flag in front of my eyes. KD is usually a sweet and relatively compliant kid. Right now, not so much.   My immediate thought: I wonder who he’s hanging around with. It must be them who are affecting him negatively.

Fortunately, I had a moment of insight. This was the beginning of me being “one of those parents” who put blame outside my kid. I then stopped and changed my thoughts. Blaming other kids and their parents doesn’t do KD or me any good.   Instead, he and only he is to blame and needs to be held responsible. I ultimately concluded that he’s “just going through stuff.” It’s unclear what exactly he’s going through, but it’s up to him to make changes. Other people won’t change for him. Because the last thing I want is to be one of “those parents.”


3 Responses to Checkmate-River City Counseling
  1. elizabeth
    May 30, 2015 | 6:32 pm

    It feel good when an insight lightbulb goes off….

  2. Barbara Salapek
    June 1, 2015 | 9:26 pm

    Way to go Steve. Being a parent can not be easy but the rewards are wonderful. KD will one day realize what a wonderful dad and mom he has. Thank for your deep thought honesty. It is so refreshing in our world of blaming others for our issues, This is why you are such a great therapist! Blessings and love to you all.

    • Steve DeBenedetti-Emanuel
      June 1, 2015 | 10:09 pm

      Thanks for your kind response. If I’m going to try and help others, I have to be clear on who I am and what I do. Let’s hope all of our intentional parenting pays off for KD… So far, he’s doing pretty well.

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