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May 6, 2009

Motherly Love?

Image: Flickr/Patricia Mellin

Image: Flickr/Patricia Mellin

I just read in the news about a local ATL mother and daughter who were just indicted for a hit and run accident that claimed the lives of 5 people on Easter Sunday. WSB reports that the daughter was driving and caused a chain reaction which led to the deaths and then drove off in her BMW.

Here’s the kicker…her mother helped her conceal the crash and repair the car. Now, they are both being charged by the authorities.

This is an extreme case of what we warn parents against. No one likes to see their kids go through something difficult. When they are small, they make small mistakes. They may break a glass window, forget their homework, or hurt a friend’s feelings. Those mistakes carry consequences with them. If we protect our kids from those natural consequences, we rob them the ability to learn from their mistakes.

As kids get bigger, their issues and problems grow right along with them. It’s our job to prepare them for that growth. While we all want our children to be good decision makers, especially as their decisions carry more weight, we don’t really like the idea of them becoming decision makers. That is not easy. And it’s not supposed to be.

I feel for this mother, I really do. I know she was scared for her daughter and thought she was helping. That’s exactly why we at ScreamFree do what we do. We want to help people see that sometimes, the very thing that you do to help your kids just may end up crippling them in the long run.

Don’t be afraid to allow consequences, both natural and those set by you, to do the screaming around your house. Remind yourself that it is better to learn hard lessons early in life when the ramifications of mistakes aren’t as severe. A little pain now just may save a lot of heartache later on.

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