Eps 436: Creating a safe space for our teens to individuate

Episode 439

Join me this week as we dive deeper into what “individuation” really means, and how parents can provide an optimal environment for their teens to move through this very developmentally appropriate process.

Today Joyful Courage is all about being fiercely committed and lovingly detached. Fiercely committed to my child, and lovingly detached to the way things unfold or the results of that commitment. My kids are on their own journeys and their learning through experience is so much richer than taking my word for it.

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Takeaways from the show

  • We are on a collective experience raising teens and our struggles aren’t unique
    (even though you might think they are)
  • Three common beliefs that emerge in the parent-child dynamic: need for belonging,
    lack of autonomy, and perceived rejection.
  • The importance of internal reflection and personal responsibility in teen development,
    rather than external reactions to parents’ opinions or actions.
  • Despite efforts to shield children from pain, life will unfold in unexpected ways,
    and addiction can still occur.
  • The importance of recognizing and addressing one’s own fears and worries when parenting,
    as they can unconsciously influence how we hold and interact with our children.
  • The importance of prioritizing a child’s well-being over external expectations,
    such as what teachers or parents think.
  • Create a safe space for teens to come to with trust and respect.
  • Parents must respect children’s boundaries and be authentic in their interactions
    to build trust and have meaningful conversations.
  • Focus on nurturing relationships with teens, even when they misbehave.

Today Joyful Courage is all about being fiercely committed and lovingly detached. Fiercely committed to my child, and lovingly detached to the way things unfold or the results of that commitment. My kids are on their own journeys and their learning through experience is so much richer than taking my word for it…

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Casey O'Roarty

Casey O'Roarty 00:05
Hello, Welcome back. Welcome to the joyful courage podcast, a place for inspiration and transformation as we work to keep it together. While parenting our tweens and teens. This is real work people. And when we can focus on our own growth and nurturing the connection with our kids, we can move through the turbulence in a way that allows for relationships to remain intact. My name is Casey already I am your fearless host. I'm a positive discipline trainer, space holder coach and the adolescent lead. It's browseable. Also mama to a 20 year old daughter and a 17 year old son I am walking right beside you on the path of raising our kids with positive discipline and conscious parenting. This show is meant to be a resource to you and I work really hard to keep it really real, transparent and authentic so that you feel seen and supported. Today is a solo show and I'm confident that what I share will be useful to you. Please don't forget sharing truly is caring. If you love today's show, please please pass the link around snap a screenshot posted on your socials or texted to your friends. Together we can make an even bigger impact on families around the globe. If you're feeling extra special, you can rate and review us over in Apple podcasts. I'm so glad that you're here. Welcome. Welcome. Welcome. Enjoy the show. Hey, friends, welcome back to the podcast. How are you? How's your week going? If you're listening when the show came out, it's Thursday, Thursday, Thursday, end of the week, moving towards the weekend. I love that. Did you have a chance to listen to Monday's interview? It might be one of my top five favourite conversations of this year. I had the best time loved getting to know Kyra fan Lowe and hearing her story. I'm so grateful that she is so generous and telling her story and how she's using it to fuel her work. And I'm just in awe. It was so awesome. She is the proof that even when things are the worst are super tough. humans find a way through. I love that she is so candid about her journey. We talked a lot about her treatment story and her pain during adolescence, how it felt to integrate what she learned through her wilderness therapy programme into the quote real world, what it was like to feel like she was making up for last time we talked about the power of maturity. We talked about self harm. And then she finds her passion of working with teens who are in the struggle, right? I loved every minute of this conversation. If you haven't listened to that yet, check it out. You won't be sorry, you won't be sorry, something that came up with her in the conversation that comes up with a lot of the clients that I work with, especially lately. It's so funny. I live in this ecosystem of joyful courage, right? So I'm doing my interviews, I'm doing my client calls. I'm doing my membership. I'm Fielding, the JC for teens Facebook group, I'm answering questions in my DMs. And there's always like themes that come up. And I love it. It's this ecosystem of patterns and themes. And I know when I come in here to talk on the solo shows, like I'm speaking to things that are really alive, because I hear about them, right. And I love putting out shows and getting feedback. And all the places from all of you listeners going oh my god, this is exactly what I needed. How did you know? Right? I know because we are in a collective experience you guys. I know sometimes it feels like you're having this really unique, you know dynamic with your kiddo unique experience unique challenges, but it is very collective. What we're all going through as we raise teens and you know, something I really appreciate about this podcast offering is I get to highlight that I get to highlight this collective journey and hopefully, you listening in makes you realise like you are not alone. Right? You are not the only one. With a kid who's struggling. You're not the only one who's unsure about what to do or what to say. Right. And that feels good. Feels good to know. You're not the only one. So something that came up in my conversation with Kyra, that's been coming up with all of you is this idea, right? This idea the parents have this question of how do I get my teens to see that their behaviour isn't hurting me it's own li hurting them. Right? When they're making less than optimal choices. Do you ever feel like that? Have you ever had that moment of like, oh my God, listen, dude, this is like, it's your problem, this sucks for you. This isn't hurting me. And then the frustration when they keep making the same less than optimal choices, right? So we're going to talk about this, we're going to talk about individuation, being reactive versus responsive, I want to kind of create a context for this and remind you of something that gets brought up a lot on the podcast, which is behaviour makes sense that there's belief behind behaviour, that oftentimes the behaviour we see is a solution to a problem we don't know about. Right? behaviour is purposeful. Oftentimes, there's also this extra

Casey O'Roarty 05:51
impulse control, right, novelty seeking, lack of self regulation, because it's in development situation that's happening in the teen years. Yes. And there's also some things that we can take a closer look at, to help us make sense of what's happening with our kids. So this belief behind behaviour dynamic, you know, one of the things that beliefs that happens, and a few weeks ago, I went through this whole process of perception how our kids perceive, interpret, form beliefs, make decisions, so go back and listen to that episode. But today, I want to remind you that one of the beliefs that can be developed over time in the parent child dynamic is, you know, the only way I feel belonging is when you notice me, when I'm keeping you busy with me, or I'm at the centre of the family, right, that's where I get my belonging hit. It's not useful, and especially if staying at the centre, or keeping our parents busy with us means that we're making risky choices or are defiant or, you know, doing the things that we wish they wouldn't do. Another belief that comes up is the teen believing I don't have autonomy, right? I don't have room to be me. I don't have control over my life. So I'm going to take it where I can get it. Right, I'm going to take it where I can get it. And once they become teenagers, they kind of realise, oh, I can say no, I can walk out the door, I can refuse. What are they going to do? Right? So we find ourselves in this power struggle. Another belief that shows up is from our child's perspective might be you care more about your values and looking good, and what other people think, then you care about me. So I'm going to push against all of that to hurt you. Because I feel hurt. Right? I don't feel like I belong. And so I'm going to push against all these things that I perceive you care about more than me? And pass that herd around? Does your kiddo fit in one of these maybe, right? And it's just information, right? If we start to understand where their beliefs are coming from, if we get under the surface under the hood, I have a new client we're talking about get under the hood, figure out what's going on. And one of the pieces of what's going on is beliefs about belonging and connection, beliefs about how my parents perceive me get curious, and tease that apart. And that's where we get to do the work with our kiddos. And I really appreciate that third one, like you care more about your values than you care about me. So I'm going to push against those values. Right? We say, Hey, listen, you're not hurting me. You're just hurting you. And is that the truth? Right, so we get tangled up in the dynamic. And that in and of itself adds this whole layer to the behaviour. Right? It's simple to say, Listen, you're not hurting me, you're only hurting yourself, as if there isn't all of this weight and baggage to how their behaviour is hurting us how their behaviour is affecting us to say that it isn't, you know, we're not going very deep. So we get tangled up in the dynamic, we add, you know, other layers to the behaviour communication is really important. How are we communicating? I found this quote from untangled by Lisa demora. I love that book. And she's talking it's a section where she's writing about supporting girls in you know, taking care of themselves. And she this just this little paragraph I really appreciated a highlighted, she said with practice, I found a tone that communicates that I'm neither critic nor judge, just interested in citing with the teenagers wise mature side to see if we have any reason to be concerned about her ability to take care of herself. So what's most interesting to me in this quote is when she says, I'm siding with the teenagers wise, mature side, right? I've been talking over the last couple of weeks, it's come up, that the work of seeing our kids beyond the troublesome behaviour, right? When our kids start getting into it, getting into the stuff that we don't want them to get into, right? When they start getting into it, our focus gets really narrow, and all we can see are the things that they're doing the scary things, or, you know, the less than optimal things, you know, and I hear it when I talk about this with parents, I'll say, you know, what are you celebrating? So what I always start with, with my clients, that's my first question. After we do a little grounding, I say, what are you celebrating? And they pause for a moment, and they might bring something up, and then they say, but all this stuff is still alive. Like, wow, yeah, you know, we did have a nice afternoon on Sunday, and went on a walk with the dog and felt connected, but they're still smoking pot, but they're still doing this and that and the other thing. So the invitation becomes recognising, what are we focusing on with our kiddos? How narrowly are we focusing on that? Right? Because if that statement, how do I get them to see they're not hurting me they're only hurting themselves is true. One of the places we get to go is how about we start seeing the more expanded version of our kids? Right? How about we start to really notice the places and it might be hard, I get it. Some of you have kids who, you know, you they come home from school, they don't have any extracurricular activities, they don't have any homework somehow. And they're in their room on their phone. Right? And I asked the question, what are you celebrating? And it's really hard, like, what are their gifts? What are their strengths? And it's hard, right? In the moment when our perspectives really narrow, and we're invited to highlight the strengths of our kids, you know, there's not a lot to look at. So we get to expand, we get to expand how we see our kids, we get to untangle ourselves, right from the problematic behaviour that might feel like is the only thing going on, and really see our kiddos for who they are? Can we do that? Right? Can we do that? If individuation and this is something I talked about with Kira, if individuation is about separating from you, the parent, then I'm going to separate from all of you to be me, which means I'm going to separate from your declared best version of me who you think I should be? Who you want me to be? Because it's the only way I can be me where I can feel sovereign, right? And adolescents are on a mission to feel autonomous, to feel sovereign, right to figure out who they are separate from you. I loved it when this came up with Kira, because it was just like, Oh, I remember when Rohan was like 1516. And things were really hard. And I said, Hey, do you want to check out some yoga? Do you want to do yoga with me? It really helps me move by body move my emotions, it's just a really full practice. She said, Mom, yoga is your thing. And I'm pretty sure I responded with something like wow, I think it's like 8 million people across the planets thing or more. Right? It's not just my thing, but I remember her like, actively dismissing yoga, because it was quote, her mom's thing, right? We see this with kids who question, you know, religion, right? And the religious values of their family that's come up in my community, you know, do I force them to go to church? How do I do this? And the kids are saying, like, I need to be me, I need to be separate from this. We see this with, you know, perhaps political leanings, right? You might be a, you know, super liberal minded person. And you might have a teenager who's exploring some more conservative ideas or the opposite. You might be really conservative minded. And you might have this kid who's pushing back with leaning more towards liberal ideas, right? sense of style, right? How they be in the world. And yeah, sometimes they're pushing against your declared values, and perhaps even some of your morals, and then we get scared, and we double down in declaring war. It is right what they should be doing. What they're doing is wrong. We judge them, we criticise them all on this quest, right? Because we're scared. We want them to have values. We want them to have morals. We want them to have our values and morals if we're being honest. And we get all tangled up again, right? And we're still in this question of, can't they see they're just hurting themselves and not me? Are they? Right? Because if I'm feeling a lot of rejection from my family, or judgement or criticism from my family, and I know what they hold as important, one way I can stick it to them is to behave in a way that is the opposite of what is important to them. Right?

Casey O'Roarty 15:52
I, as the teenager am not thinking what's best for me. Instead, I'm thinking, how can I push back against this judgement and criticism against this lack of acceptance of who I am? Like, by the way, who I am today? Hello, trying something on? Not gonna be who I am forever? Or maybe it will be? And I'm your kid, you're gonna still love me? Right? So you get to really think about what is it that you want most? What do you want most? What do you want most? Right, this is something that came up recently in a coaching call, you know, the client said, I want them to have like an internal reflection on what they're doing. Yes, we want them to have an internal reflection them with them, versus an external reaction to us. Right? So the difference is, you know, as saying, what were you thinking, right? That's the external versus their development and their own inner voice? That sounds like, what was I thinking? Why did I make this choice? What got me here? Right? They might hear us, you know? And just imagine like, how do you want to respond? What are you gonna do about this? How are you going to fix this? Versus growing that internal reflection? What am I going to do about this? Right? Or even you know, I'm really worried about your behaviour. I'm really scared, valid, emotionally honest. But what do we want most? We want our kids to be able to tap into how they feel about their behaviour. I'm worried about this. Last night got out of hand. I don't know if I have control over this anymore. Or I don't know if I like the direction this is going in. Right? Don't we want them to be in that consideration? Right? When it's us, Hey, you're spiralling, you're on the edge of destruction, I'm going to stand up straight, and I'm going to be like, you don't even know me. You don't know what I'm going through. You don't get it? Right. You know, keeping that in mind. We want that internal reflection, we want them to develop their critical thinking, we want them to be willing to ask for help. Right? When they are dabbling in not great pay. And it might be like, Oh, shit, I'm way behind in, you know, biology. And now I gotta ask for help. Are they willing, we want them to be able to process the experiences that they have and make sense of them. We want them to take personal responsibility. This is what we want. Right? I mean, I'm making an assumption, but I'm guessing, considering all the parents that I've worked with all the parents that have asked, What do you want most? These are things that come up, right? I mean, I want this for all humans, right? I know, adults that could use some help on some of these practices, for sure. And when we think about that, you know, when we come back to our teams, and we think about, okay, I want them to develop internal reflection, critical thinking, the ability to ask the willingness, not even the ability, the willingness to ask for help, the humility, right, of asking for help. I want them to be willing to process their experiences and take personal responsibility, what needs to be alive, in your relationship with them, for those things to develop? Right, for the internal reflection to develop versus the external reaction to us? What needs to be alive in the relationship? Here's what I think, trust. And as you've heard me say before, I'm not talking about I trust you, you know, to go out in the world and not do the wrong thing. That's not what I'm talking about here. I'm talking about it from your child's perspective. Do they trust you? Do they trust that you can hold what they're going through without making them feel worse about it? Right, I talked about that a lot. Trust safety, same kind of vein connection. and needs to be alive in the relationship mutual respect. Attunement, right? These need to be alive. And I will say mutual respect. You know, mutual respect is really about, I'm going to respect you, the person, the human in front of me. And as I do that, which means I'm going to listen, I'm going to consider your perspective. I'm going to listen to understand, consider your perspective. I'm going to see you and your pain. I'm going to see you and your experience. I'm also going to respect myself, I'm going to, you know, set boundaries, and by boundaries, I mean, this conversation has become heated, we need to take a pause, right, I'm going to respect myself and pull out when conversations become hurtful towards me. I'm going to respect the situation. That's where our firmness lives, right. You know, the relationship needs to be attuned, we need to feel felt. And while it would be great to say, well, I need my kid to attune to me. This is really about you, a tuning to your child, right? You attuning to your child is opening up a space for them to see you from a more expansive perspective, but we can't get there first. First, you need to see your kiddo from a more expansive perspective you need to attune so in relationship, we need to nurture trust, safety, connection, mutual respect, attunement. And when we think about relationship, as you know, it's like my fav. So what we centre here in joyful courage is relationship. What breaks down relationship is judgement, criticism, being dismissive, just staying focused on the tip of the iceberg, right, nagging mistrust making things about you, right. And I have a great story about this whole making things about you. I have a client who recently shared with me, they have a kiddo that is smoking pot, and she's like, Hey, guess what? I'm good with smoking pot. And so I know that there's many of us who are in that tension of my kids doing this thing. They don't seem to think it's a problem. I don't want them to do it. I recognise I don't have control over it. But I feel like I'm giving them permission. If I'm not, you know, laying down this hardcore law, put my foot down, but I realised putting my foot down and getting all rigid about it is actually going to send them underground, blah, blah, blah, right. Anybody relating to that? I know there are people out there relating to that. So here she is, and she's telling me about, okay, so I realise that ultimately, one thing that's happening in this dynamic, is I'm sitting inside of feeling like, I must be a really bad mom, for my kid to end up being one of those kids that smoking pot regularly. I must be a really bad mom, where did I fail them? I've done everything wrong. Right? And there is this focus on this is our fault. Right? And listen, we all go there. Most of us, maybe not all of us, but I know I do. I'm guessing many of you listening are like, oh, yeah, I know that. I know that monologue. I know that internal monologue. We all go here. And what's important is, I remember bringing almost those same words to one of my kids, right and saying, I feel like I failed you I missed things. You know, if I had done different things if I had a different style, and my kid being like,

Casey O'Roarty 23:50
now, this isn't about you, right? This isn't about you. It's not about us. You can do all the quote, right things, whatever they are, and still have a kid making less than optimal choices. Okay? We don't have that much influence. At the end of the day, teen brain development happens, the wiring for novelty seeking and risk taking exists, their temperaments are real and unique to them. Can we do things to lower the likelihood? Yeah, maybe can we do things to stay in relationship and influence whether or not risky behaviour becomes out of control addiction? You know, we can decrease the likelihood of that, can we control it now? So how do we be with this individuation? Right? It's an inside job of people. It's an n side job. So you get to take notes, right? You get to assess what you're taking responsibility for. You can't shield your child from the pain of life. Right you aren't in charge of whether or not they have heartbreak. You don't determine whether or not they deal with addiction of one kind or another over the course of their life, you aren't in control of their educational journey. Right. And I talked about handing over the energetic responsibility. But before we get there, I want to say, you can't shield your child from the pain of life. Can you keep them safe? best you can? Yeah. Can you have conversations around? Situational awareness? And can you you know, not let your 10 year old go walking down creepy dark alleys in the middle of the night? Yes. I mean, obviously, I just want to state this, obviously, we take responsibility for a lot of things. But where do we actually have control? Right? Our life unfolds, right? We can't prevent life unfolding. We all live inside of relationships with others friendships, romantic relationships, people break up, is that painful? Yeah, heartache is real. Right. And again, we can do all the things and stay connected, and there is still a pathway to addiction that some of our loved ones fall into. Right? You know, my story with Rowan and her educational journey. So handing over the energetic responsibility might sound like you know what? life unfolds in all sorts of unexpected and sometimes really painful ways. And I have faith that you will continue to grow and develop what you need to move through your hard times. And I'm here for you, and I love you. And I'm happy to resource you. Let me know what you need. Right? Good sound like, you know, bad relationship is hard. Breaking up with friends and partners is really hard. And it can really hurt. I appreciate and trust that you are fine tuning your radar in standing for yourself and how you want to be treated. If you ever want to talk more, I'm available, right handing over the energetic responsibility. I'm not okay with your substance use scary and dangerous. And I'm going to interrupt and intervene and interfere where I can. But ultimately, you walk out the door, you decide what your relationship is with nicotine, or weed or alcohol. I'm going to keep checking in with you about it offering information and resources. But I get that ultimately you decide whether or not you're using, I'm going to love you no matter what. And when you're ready. If you feel like you need help, we can get you the resources that you need. I'm always here for you.

Casey O'Roarty 27:51
I do see education is valuable. And I recognise there are many roads, to education and what that looks like and I see you and I know you want a good life. And I believe that you will find your way. And I'm always here to talk. I'm going to keep asking questions and staying connected around this. But ultimately, it's your path, you decide where you want it to go. Can you feel that? As you listen, can you feel the handing over of that energetic responsibility? not abandoning, I'm not like, guess what anything goes good luck with that. I'm going to stay connected and in relationship. But I'm also acknowledging that this is on them. Right? And that they're not alone with it. I'm handing this like energetic ball over. But I'm also standing next to them and saying, I know that you can hold this. And when we hand it over that way we loosen this contrast of you know, I can either do what my parents want me to do, it will gross. Or I get to do what is best for me. Right? I feel empowered. It's not a parental I should do what my parents say instead, it moves more into what is best for me, what do I want? How can I move in the direction have what I want? So that make sense. Does that make sense? And again, that quote from Lisa demore, I've found a tone that communicates I'm neither critic or judge, I'm just interested in siding with the teens wide mature side to see if we have any reason to be concerned about their ability to take care of themselves. Right, we want to lean into and hold and speak to right and connect with our teenagers wise mature side and guess what it exists? Right. So before you're like, well, if my kid had one of those, I'd lean into it. Before you start thinking like that. I want to challenge you and say it is there. Right? And maybe it's a little dormant because nobody's ever taught Getting to it. So the work then becomes, you know, cleaning up the space so that there's room for that wise, mature side. How do we do that? Well, shocker, we get our own shit together, start noticing, what are the majority of your interactions like with your kids? How often are you noticing their strengths, their accomplishments, no matter how small and offering gratitude? How often are you getting on their case? nagging them? What are you worried about? Right, and I hear, Well, if I don't nag them, they won't get it done. Or if I don't say anything, they'll think I'm giving them permission, or they're ruining their life, or they're dead in a ditch, or they're on their way to, you know, XYZ rehab. So I want you to dig into those fears, right? Like really kind of lean into them. Right. And when we think about our fears, I think it's also really powerful to notice, when we're in our fears, how are we holding our kids? are we holding them as capable, as lovable as worthy? Or are we holding them as incapable, unlovable, unworthy, this matters? This matters. Because how many of us have had to go to therapy and dig into our experiences of being unlovable of being unworthy of not believing in ourselves, right? What happens? When we are raised in a space where the messaging both the spoken unspoken, energetic, actionable messaging is you're capable, you're lovable, and you're worthy. And that's how I hold you all the time, even when you're doing really dumb ass things, right? How are you holding your kids, when you're letting yourself be run by the fears and the worries? And it's valid to notice how you are experiencing their behaviour as a reflection of you. Okay, listen, we have to love our kids more than we care about what other people think. So do some work around this. Be honest with yourself, What will people think is an opportunity to say, what's more important to me? Is it more important to me what my parents think about my parenting, or my relationship with my teenager? Right? What is most important to you, and the more you can put your teenager in that place of this is what's important, this relationship, this person is more important to me than, you know, even like, I think I was talking to Dr. Shefali, about this name drop, in one of my interviews with her, or maybe it was for her Summit, where we were talking about that, and how, you know, the experience of a parent who might have certain religious beliefs, and then maybe they have a child who comes out as gay or transgender or a member of the queer community, and they're at odds, right, they've got this child they love and they got this belief system that they've either been raised in or chosen into, you get to love your child. You have to, for their safety. You got to love your child more than you love your religion, your dogma, right? What your parents think, what the neighbourhood thinks, what the teachers think, right? I have a lot of clients whose kids are struggling at school, and it looks like a lot of defiance and disruptive behaviour at school. Right, great, that feels good. You know, teachers are coming. Well, what are you going to do about it? Teachers are saying, Here's how they act. You got to figure this out? Because they can't act like this in my class. Right? Oh, it's the worst. It's the worst. And the impulse is, what do I got to do to my kid? To get them to understand they can't act like that? Right? What do I gotta do to my kid versus what's going on? Taking a stand for our kids looks like being willing to let go of the tip of the iceberg and get under the surface. Right? What do you want to create in the relationship? How do you want your connection with your kid to feel? Right? I think about love, I think about closeness. I think about openness. Right? I just wanted to feel like ease. I want my kids to just for it to be a no brainer for them to turn towards me and ask what I think I want to be in consideration. Right.

Casey O'Roarty 34:45
That's the dream. That's the dream people. So again, tools for getting there, clean it up. You know, things have been hard between us. I really want to clean some stuff up. Here's what I want to own. Tell me your experience of me. What do you wish I understood about you? It's going to Take time to clean things up to get to a space where your kids feel like they can trust that you're a safe place to come to takes more than words, right? So you got to be in it for the long haul, encouragement, matters. Right? encouragement, I notice this, that or the other. I noticed you did this. I noticed you did that. Thank you. Right. Thank you for taking care of that. Thank you for the kind words like thank you, for being you. I believe in you. Evidence based, right. I believe in you, I have faith in you. I trust you. I know you're capable. And I know that because you did this thing over there. You shown it. You've shown it here. You've shown it there. I see these life skills when you navigated that, and this. And the other thing, I see what's important to you. And I know if that's important to you, that you'll bring that into play over here in this situation. Be curious? And if curiosity is something it's so hard, I don't know what I don't know how to be curious. Okay, here's what you do. But one thing in your back pocket? Tell me more? Tell me about it. Tell me more about it. I'm curious about There you go back pocket. build mutual respect, right, build mutual respect, I already said a little bit about mutual respect. When I'm talking about mutual respect, it is, again, respecting the human in front of you, which looks like treating them with kindness. Right, treating them with dignity and respect, while also respecting yourself and the situation. So building mutual respect sounds like asking for permission. Right? Can I ask you a question? Are you willing to listen? Or when they come to share something with you asking? Do you want me to listen? Or are you looking for feedback? Are you looking for advice? Set your personal boundaries, like I said earlier, right? Like this is getting pretty heated, I'm noticing my own experience where I'm feeling a little judgy. So I'm going to pull back for a little while. And let's come back to this one. We're both regulated, and allow your team to set boundaries with you. Right? If they say, I don't want to talk about this, right now. They get to set that boundary, you get to say, Hey, listen, I noticed when I come in and want to talk to you about school, that you really avoid and push away that conversation. And I'm curious about that. Right. So now we get to have a conversation about what's under the iceberg there. Right? I don't want to talk about it. Yeah, no, I really want to respect your boundaries. And I'm also really concerned. So I'm wondering when can we have this conversation? Right? What do you need to have this conversation? How do you need me to be right? So yes, to them setting boundaries, of course, but I can hear the Yeah, butters in the crowd being like, then they never want to talk. They want to talk. They want to talk when it feels safe, when they trust that you can hold it and not be critical or judgmental. You get to be honest, you get to be authentic. You also get to this is mutually respectful, drop the agenda. It's amazing to me how often parents say, Well, my team just manipulates me. And then when we take an honest look at our interactions with our kids, how often are we trying to manipulate the situation? What do I gotta do to get my kid to do what I want manipulation, right, that in and of itself, so let's just be real, dropped the agenda. Listen, to understand and love the kid that you have, love who they are beyond this less than optimal behaviour beyond this weird gauntlet of adolescence, beyond this dark time, love them. Love them. The place where you have influence is in the relationship that you nurture. Right? Our teens grow in their sense of self and decision making, when they have a place to bring what they are moving through a place where they feel seen and heard and appreciated and validated. Rudolph Stryker says, a child needs encouragement like a plant needs water. Right? If we're stingy with it, my plant might grow. It's not going to grow to its optimal growth. That didn't really make sense but I'm gonna go with it. I love this right a child needs encouragement like a plant needs water, give your teens this optimal environment for growth and development and they will grow and develop. Right It can feel counterintuitive. I get this I hear this from clients. It can feel counterintuitive to focus on relationship when there's real stuff going down. I recently had someone who reached out, who has a team that's getting into a lot of mischief and you know, kind of spiralling through less than optimal behaviour. And, you know, said, I'm not going to school today, right? And then that same day, she asked her mom to pick her up a drink on the way home and the mom said, No way, it just feels like I'd be rewarding that behaviour, right? And I invited her to consider what if the response was, you know what, I'm almost home. Instead of picking you up a drink, I'm gonna grab you. And we'll go to Starbucks together. Right? In that scenario, you're getting in some one on one time you're getting in some connection, you are nurturing the relationship, right? And remember, our willingness to spend time and connect with our kids should not be contingent on their behaviour. Leveraging our love, and connection and acceptance of who they are, in this moment, will always end up damaging the relationship and or for sure, damaging our teens sense of self and worthiness. Does that make sense? Let's say that, again, leveraging our love and connection and acceptance of who they are different from a man except that you're a total Stoner, right? Acceptance of who they are, in this moment, will end up damaging the relationship and or for sure, damaging our teen sense of self and worthiness. So coming back to this idea of well, they're not hurting me, they're only hurting themselves. I hope that this show highlights how complicated and layered that statement actually is. And I know this experience and the pain that comes with it, I see you, I get it. I get it. Ah, that was a lot. So please reach out. Let me know how this content landed for you. What are your follow up questions? Where would you like me to dive deeper? What are your habits I'm here for it to you. And our shared ecosystem, really fuel the content of these shows. So be in touch. Let me know what you think. Let me know where you'd like me to go. And yeah, I'll see you next week. Bye.

Casey O'Roarty 42:37
Thank you so much for listening in today. Thank you so much to my spreadable partners, Julieta and Alana as well as Danielle and Chris Mann and the team at pod shaper for all the support with getting this show out there and helping it to sound so good. Check out our offers for parents with kids of all ages and sign up for our newsletter to stay better connected at be at Sprout double.com tune back in on Monday for a brand new interview and I will be back solo with you next Thursday. Have a great day.

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