Sawing through the apron stringsWednesday, April 06, 2011
In the parenting journey, nothing has been quite so difficult for me as loosing the proverbial apron strings. As I write this, my younge...
In the parenting journey, nothing has been quite so difficult for me as loosing the proverbial apron strings.
As I write this, my youngest is off to spend the rest of the week with relatives for an impromptu spring break visit. I envy (yes, I'll go so far as to use that word) those parents who are not attached to their teen and adult children by this psychosomatic umbilicus.
How do parents make the transition, especially with their sons? My daughter, who is married and expecting her first baby next month, has been an entirely different process. Perhaps because she's female, and easier for me to relate to, the transition from child to woman has seemed more natural. Not easier, per say, but different.
The boys, however...
I hadn't realized how neurotic I was about them until last weekend. We attended a gallery opening two hours away with my husband, two of our sons, and a multitude of their wee friends (who drove themselves).
Besides asking for a text update every 20 minutes as to their location, upon arrival at the gallery I entered into "herding" mode. Instead of letting them wander among the antique cars, view the art, and enjoy the band playing outside, I was compelled to keep them all within constant view. Remember, these "children" are all between the ages of 13 and 18. Most, if not all of them, can pick me up bodily and transport me from place to place.
My harping eventually aggravated even my preternaturally easygoing husband. "Could you stop obsessing about them and relax, please?"
|photo by launceston_lad||via PhotoRee|
Well, yes. I was obsessing, I had to admit. And no, I couldn't stop, even though I wanted to. I'm well-versed enough in psychology to know that when you WANT to stop doing something and can't, you have a problem. I don't know how to let them grow into the freedom of adulthood.
Mothers of grown children, how do you cope?
How do you let them loose?