By Janet Lund
You know that feeling…
You’ve been trying to figure out something you and your daughter can do together like when she was little. Finally, you come up with a great idea! You are sure she is going to like this, or at least you really hope she does.
The big moment comes. You share the exciting news and…the message falls flat.
Whether it was a mother-daughter date, a new activity you had hoped to try together, or suggesting she join you in chasing a goal, it felt like you were talking to a brick wall. Now your heart feels like it’s been body slammed.
It hurts. It’s deflating. It leaves you feeling blue and hopeless.
As moms of teens, we start to feel desperate. We fear our relationship with our daughter will vanish like fog when the sun comes up in the morning. We are anxious our sweet moments will wisp away to nothing but memory.
You know she would have loved the idea just a few years ago. You long for the days when you laughed and played together. You wonder if you will experience that special connection with your daughter ever again.
Hang in there, mom!
A body snatcher has not stollen your sweet girl. But her body, inside and out, is under major reconstruction right now. She is distracted and overwhelmed. Her feelings swing from one extreme to the other. Unbridled emotion to total apathy. This is hard for a mama bear’s heart to take day after day.
It won’t stay like this forever, but it will stick around awhile.
How do you break through the brick wall?
In the movie “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” Hagrid the giant, Harry’s newfound friend, knows how to get through a brick wall – not by breaking it down, but with a magical combination he taps out on the bricks with the tip of his umbrella.
Mom, there is no magic spell to give you instant passage into your daughter’s heart. However, with a few tools and a little patience, you will get through to your sweet girl. You can help her find calm, let down her guard, and open up to you again.
In order for you to do that, you need to prepare yourself. Here is how:
3 ways to get through the brick wall days
- Take care of you.Make sleep a priority, and water intake too. Take time to quiet down, gather your thoughts, journal, read, pray, whatever helps you feel centered and calm. Parenting out of a state of calm will have a powerful impact on your interactions with your daughter and the rest of your family.
- Make your own fun.If what you dreamed up for you and your daughter to do is something you really want to do, go for it! Go ahead and do it on your own. Sometimes doing things alonereminds us that we can be our own best friend. It also leaves an opening for your daughter to possibly change her mind and join you later on.
- Celebrate.Don’t keep your fun to yourself. Share your experience. Don’t hold back how much fun you had. Let your enthusiasm weave itself into your day, your week, your life. Be proud of yourself for going for it.
Your enthusiasm will impact your daughter. Believe it or not, your young lady is watching you even when she doesn’t act like it. With time, she just may grow curious – and her curiosity may just soften her brick wall.
When your daughter is in a calmer state of mind, be curious. Inquire about why she didn’t want to do what you had suggested. Ask, “Was there something about doing it that made you uncomfortable?” Say, “I’m curious because I care about you and your feelings.” If she starts to open up to you, say, “Tell me more about that.” This will coax her to open up. Ask her, “What would make you more comfortable?” “How would you feel about trying it now?” This will open the door to the possibility of having her change her mind. You can also tell her, “If you ever want to give it a try, just let me know.”
Each day is its own adventure. Your daughter will be more receptive and open to you some days than others. Just take them one at a time.
Finally, remember these two things: 1) Take care of yourself and 2) No conversation is over. You can always circle back.
Learn. Love. Laugh.
How else can I get through?
Order my book, “L.O.V.E.D. – 5 Simple Steps to Connect with Your Teen Daughter.” It will empower you. Build a heart-to-heart connection. Nurture your love into something beautiful. Take the following link for your paperback or Kindle version on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/L-V-D-Connect-Daughter-ebook/dp/B08DL9Y913
Take this link to find your favorite eBook store: https://books2read.com/u/bzjq7L
Janet Lund is a relationship coach who specializes in nurturing the bond between moms and their teen/pre-teen daughters. She leads moms through coaching, speaking, and songwriting. Janet has spoken and performed in Canada, the United States, and Norway. Follow her on facebook.com/momkeepcalm and visit her website at momkeepcalm.com for parenting tools and words of support to be a calm mom.