Moms, Be a Mom, Not a Friend
By Mary Jo Rapini
Raising daughters is so tough and no one teaches you how. During the teen years, your daughters have so many dramatic changes you often want to cling to the path of least resistance, and that means not enforcing rules or boundaries. Moms who become their daughter’s friend instead of mom are doing their child a huge disservice, mostly because you can’t be friends. Your daughter needs you to mentor, establish boundaries and be strong enough to say no when you need to in order to keep her safe. Relationships are about equality and sharing on the same level. Some information should not be shared with your daughter, and sharing too much of your personal life with your teen won’t help her deal with her own issues, and it may lead to her respecting your opinions less.
She needs to be taught that she cannot be disrespectful to you or her dad, nor can she bully her siblings. While she is under your care, she is responsible for following the house rules. You put yourself at a disadvantage if you are her “buddy” and resist following through with discipline that comes with the consequences of her behavior.
There is a motto I use frequently, and it has helped me say NO as well as follow through with discipline when necessary. That motto is, “You don’t have to like me or the rules, you only have to respect them and follow through.” Your daughter will become a strong capable woman if you clear the way with boundaries and support showing her there is no end to a mother’s love.
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