There is still time to make parenting amends | #parenting


Dear Annie: I have a daughter and a son, who are now 27 and 30, respectively. I have always tried to be a good mother to both of them. But somehow, my daughter was always the lovable one. My son always rubbed me the wrong way, and I scolded him much more and was much stricter with him. I wanted my children to be independent and be able to care for themselves. I guess I pushed my son more than my daughter.

My son was always the angry one, picking on his younger sister. Over the years, I tried several times to ask him why and get him to talk. He never did. Yesterday, he confessed that he was bullied as a child; his father and I never knew and so never did anything about it. He also said that he felt I never loved him as I did his sister.

I told him how sorry I was for what he went through and admitted that I treated him differently, something I never should have done but could not control. He told me he does not hate me, which is what I always felt. What other advice do you have for me to make amends? — Helpless

Dear Helpless: Loving one child more than the other most certainly qualifies as a mistake. Everyone makes mistakes; welcome to being a human. It’s great that you now know better and are trying to do better with your son by taking ownership of your mistakes and assuring him of your love.

You might want to seek the help of a professional therapist to better understand why you had a more difficult time with your son. The more you understand yourself, the more you can share with him. You can also let him know that your parenting style had nothing to do with him and everything to do with what you were dealing with as a mother.

No sympathy

Dear Annie: I am a 74-year-old woman. I have two sisters, both of whom are older than me. I just had a heart attack in February. Since then, I have not heard from either one. Not even a hello. I’m not asking for sympathy, but they don’t even ask how I am doing. It has been hard at times. I am going to cardiac rehab, which I know will help in time.

The thing that bothers me the most is that I see them on Facebook sending comments to others who are ill. And birthday wishes. I have sent them birthday wishes and called or sent get-well wishes. What should I do? — Feeling Hurt

Dear Hurt: I’m glad you are on the mend and taking the necessary steps to better your health. Sometimes we are looking for sympathy, love and kindness from others when we really need to give all of that to ourselves. Be kind to yourself and your body first. Then call your sisters and tell them how much you miss them.

Send your questions for Annie Lane to dearannie@ creators.com.



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