Home Parenting Parenting My Teenager – Why I Felt The Need To Give Up Control

Parenting My Teenager – Why I Felt The Need To Give Up Control

by Vidya Sury February 23, 2016 7 comments
Parenting Teenagers _ giving up control. Vidya Sury

Parenting teenagers is a tricky process.

I always feel that they parent us, as much as we try our best to be good parents to them. At least, my son has often made me feel that way with his unexpected wisdom. Unexpected, because we just tend to assume certain things of a growing child often as a result of our own pressure and anxiety to do the right thing.

Watching him grow has been a very rewarding experience, as I’ve had the privilege of learning so much in the process. He has taught me that sometimes things are not as difficult to handle as I might fear and that love and logic work best.

This is why there came a point when I felt the need to let go, give up control, so that he could grow.

Being a good parent requires knowing when to push, when to back off, when to help, when to let them make mistakes, then being strong enough to watch them go

Our job, as the parents of a growing teenager, is to ensure that he gradually develops independence, self-confidence and self-esteem, helping him take control of his life. This is neither simple nor natural and takes a lot of ongoing effort.

The thing is, even though he’s growing at a normal pace, physically and emotionally, we often have problems coming to terms with it. After all, wasn’t he the little bundle of joy we brought home what seems like just yesterday? It is as though we’re stuck in a time warp, as we want everything to work out perfectly, yet find it tough to let go.

Why isn’t this process easy?

Teen brains as well as adult brains are not always adequately developed to make good decisions consistently. So it is my responsibility to help my son cultivate his decision making skills by alerting him to the risks and teaching him to consider alternatives – all this without passing judgment and threatening.

To do this, I had to give up control.

Continue reading this post at World of Moms 

I’d love to know what your thoughts are about teenagers and the issue of control.

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Eli February 23, 2016 at 11:04 pm

I could so relate to that Vidya- with one already having left home and one teenager still at home – it is quite a balance sometimes…And you say it so well – when to push, when to back off… I also think that letting go of control is the best way to go… They grow on that. And showing them trust and belief … It’s an interesting age for sure … well it has always been I guess.
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Rajlakshmi February 24, 2016 at 12:57 pm

This is the same thing I tell my Mom even now. She finds it very hard to let my brother make any mistake… but now slowly she too understands that he will learn only from the mistakes he does, others can only guide him. Teenagers are such a difficult bunch. I was a very quite kid while my bro was a hurricane 😛
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Vidya Sury February 24, 2016 at 1:05 pm

As parents, it is very hard to let go, Rajlakshmi! I love to think I was easy for my Mom to handle, but I am sure I gave her many anxious moments. Sometimes we have to bite the bullet and watch kids make mistakes, so they learn. In the long run, these are the lessons they remember best. 🙂 Thank you for commenting! Loved your last post where you shared memories!
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Geets February 24, 2016 at 5:51 pm

O this is such a warm post.. Coming to terms with ones own principles and idealogies is difficult and letting it go and seeing the child through it is all about acceptance..

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Darla M Sands February 24, 2016 at 7:00 pm

I was certainly a handful as a teen. 🙂 While wishing my parents, especially my somewhat controlling father, had done a few things differently I am grateful for much. In fact, I plan to drive across my Midwestern US state and stay for several days to help them both convalesce over different health issues in slight repayment for their loving parentage.
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Aditi February 25, 2016 at 12:27 am

I wasn’t an easy teenager. I am so glad my parents knew when to befriend me, when to let go….I am so grateful they let me make my own mistakes and learn from them and were also so easy yo speak to when I needed advice!
Lovely post Vidya, you rock it mom! 🙂
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William February 27, 2016 at 8:06 am

Fabulous, VIDYA SURY! I love the way you express your messages. It is so nice. Love to see your new post for near future. Thanks.


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