The Hardest Parts of Parenting for Me Right Now

Parenting is a struggle, but you don’t always struggle with the same things throughout your parenting journey.

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Producer: Drew Erickson

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how to know when to step in...
[00:00:00.120] – Hilary Erickson

Hey, guys. Welcome back to the Pulling Curls Podcast. Today on Episode 195, we are talking about the hardest parts of parenting for me right now. So let’s untangle it.

[00:00:19.850] – Hilary Erickson

Hi, I’m Hilary Erickson, the curly head behind the Pulling Curls Podcast: pregnancy and parenting untangled. There’s no right answer for every family, but on this show, we hope to give you some ideas to make life simpler at your house. Life’s tangled, just like my hair.

[00:00:40.740] – Hilary Erickson

Okay, so I want to talk about the things that are hard for me as a parent right now, which, by the way, it made me chuckle that I was like, Let’s untangle it because it’s as if these were problems that were just easily fixed. These easy problems to fix. No, not at all. We can’t really untangle them.

[00:00:55.760] – Hilary Erickson

But I think it’ll be interesting maybe for you to hear what I’m struggling with, and maybe it will echo for you, but I also want to be really clear that this doesn’t have anything to do with what my kids are going through. It is all what is in my head, which when you’re the parent of adult children, a lot of times it is all in your head.

[00:01:18.240] – Hilary Erickson

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[00:01:55.280] – Hilary Erickson

Just as an FYI, my kids are 14, 19, and 22. Pretty sure I got that right. The good news is none of them listen to this well. One of them listens to the podcast because she does the transcriptions, but I’m pretty sure I got her age right.

[00:02:09.210] – Hilary Erickson

Anyway, the first thing that I am struggling with is church. So we’re pretty churchy around here, and I have two kids that are not interested in being churchy, and I’m just struggling with how to be okay with that and to not let that mean anything about me and my area of the church. Now, there are things that they struggle with church that are things that I have struggled with church and situations in which they’ve been in a church that I found really complicated and hard as well.

[00:02:37.700] – Hilary Erickson

So I feel for them a lot, but trying to figure out how I navigate church without them and not have that mean anything for myself, especially because the church that we go to is all about families and my family, half of it is not interested in being there or even discussing it. So that can be hard as a parent. So I’m just learning to separate my relationships in that area and I’m doing a much better at it.

[00:03:01.730] – Hilary Erickson

There are down days and hard times, but I think I’m actually maybe coming out ahead on this one, at least today. The second thing I am struggling with is how quickly they can change, especially as they’re growing up, sometimes one person is their friend and then the next day they’re not your friend, or one day something’s cool, the next day it’s not cool. And it’s just hard to change so quickly sometimes with kids. That’s something that I really struggle with.

[00:03:30.720] – Hilary Erickson

And it’s something that I have to remind myself not to be like, hey, I thought she was okay yesterday. Just be like, I get it. Because obviously there are people that were okay in my life at one point in time that are not okay in my life in this point in time. And I understand all of that.

Is it a joy to be at home (over a home photo)
[00:03:43.950] – Hilary Erickson

So I need to let my kids have those same feelings for themselves. So that’s something that I struggle with, but I’m doing better about it. It’s just reminding myself that things change really quickly and that’s okay. And it, again, doesn’t mean anything about me. I don’t need to know why their feelings change unless they want to talk to me about it. But things change really quickly as your kids are getting older, I find.

[00:04:05.330] – Hilary Erickson

And then finally, the thing that I struggle with the most is figuring out my spot with adult children, how to know when to step in, how to know not when to step in, how to know when to just bite my fingernails on the sideline. It is so hard.

[00:04:20.600] – Hilary Erickson

And I try and remind my kids that at one point in time, I was literally responsible for absolutely everything in their life. And they have made a lot of poor choices in front of me as toddlers. They’re just like climbing up onto the piano there. You’re constantly like, you have made a lot of poor choices directly in front of me.

[00:04:38.340] – Hilary Erickson

And so it’s hard for me to feel really trustworthy of you all the time. And so that’s something that I struggle with, just trying to figure out when I need to intervene and when I don’t need to intervene and find a balance on that. Honestly, even when I need to text and just be like, Hey, I hope you’re having a good week versus not texting because I might be over bothering them.

[00:04:58.140] – Hilary Erickson

Just figuring that out is super difficult for me. I always feel like I am not getting it right and I am sure that I’m going to struggle this one for the rest of my life because they are all going to be adults for much longer than I had them as tiny toddlers who were making lots of mistakes. So that’s just something that I’m struggling with right now.

[00:05:16.720] – Hilary Erickson

I thought that episode might be interesting for you guys. I know a lot of you guys have young children and so maybe you are just seeing what it might be like in the future. Or maybe you’ll realize that you are struggling with similar things to me. And honestly, things never change. So that struggle with when to intervene and when not to intervene, I think is paramount for almost all of parenting. It just gets more gray, probably as they get older and more confusing.

[00:05:39.520] – Hilary Erickson

And also you live your life without them most of the time. And so you’re just never sure if you’re doing the right thing, which is the reality of all parenting. I think so many people are like, there must be a sleep training method that is the right thing. But in reality, there is not a sleep training method that is the right thing. Sometimes X, Y, Z is right. Sometimes picking up the baby and loving them all night long is also the right thing to do. And that’s why it’s so complicated.

[00:06:04.060] – Hilary Erickson

Stay tuned. We have some great episodes coming up. Next week, I’m having my friend to talk all about what we do in case something goes wrong with baby in the hospital. We’ve already talked about mom, but this episode is going to be about baby. And then the week after that, echoing this one, I’m going to talk about things about organizing that are hard for me. So stay tuned.

[00:06:21.050] – Hilary Erickson

Thanks so much for joining us on today’s episode. The Pulling Curls Podcast grows when you share us on social media or leave a review. If you do, please tag us so that we can share and send you a virtual hug, which, frankly, is my favorite hugging. Until next time, we hope you have a tangle free day.

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