Monday, March 26, 2012

Adolescence: Deciding the Future

     Maybe your child is good at sports?  Maybe your child is good at academics?  Maybe your child is talented at singing or playing an instrument?  Adolescence is a time for your child to explore their options and determine what they are good at.
     The best thing you can do for your child is encourage them and be supportive.  Don't discourage them from doing the things they like to do or the things they are really good at!!  I have four daughters and each of them has things that they are really good at.  I was always big into sports and so was my wife so naturally we wanted our children to be athletes.  Our oldest daughter did not have a lot of athletic ability but she did well in school and had a lot of friends.  We never held it against her and encouraged her to do the things she liked even though we would have loved for her to be an athlete.  Our second daughter was a decent athlete but she really liked cheerleading so we supported her.  Our third daughter, she was the brains of the family, academically she was always striving to do her best.  She was a decent athlete and also was a cheerleader, but her strength was her academics.  Then came our youngest and finally we got our athlete.  She tried cheerleading and didn't like it and all of our girls did above average in school.
     My point is that each of them had their strengths and we gave them the freedom to make their own choices about what they wanted to do and supported their decision.  We didn't try to force them to be what we wanted them to be.  Adolescence is hard enough without having to try to live up to expectations that are not what they want but trying to live up to parents expectations.

Chuck Harper

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