Just like you, your child has boundaries. Are you respecting your child’s boundaries? In the committed journey of parenthood, more specifically parenting the adopted child, many parents tend to find themselves going a bit, well, overboard.
What do I mean by overboard? Here are several examples.
- Sharing your child’s story with others. Your child’s story is theirs. Private and when old enough they can decide what and how they wish to share, if anything. You need to help them learn those tools.
- Pushing your agenda on your child. Yes, you are the parents, but you also need to listen to your child because he or she is always giving you indicators of what is okay/not okay or way too much information (glazed-over look).
- If internationally and/or interracially adopted, immersing the child and the rest of the family too deeply into the birth culture, thus over-saturating your child (possibly to the point of excluding your culture).
There are many other signs that you may be going overboard. As in, “I don’t know.” Or silence.
You know your child. Work on learning how to talk to them, because it changes as your child grows from a little one through adolescence and into adulthood and parenthood. Work on learning to listen with your ears and the rest of your senses.
Parents: How have you gone overboard and what have you done to address it?