Young adults can be difficult at times, can’t they? Of course, if we are being honest, we can be a little difficult at times, too! In all the emotional hubbub, it can be all too easy to forget that our growing kids sometimes need affection.
Kids are not always easy to like. They talk back, they yell at us, they get irritable, and they are moody. It can be difficult to know how to handle those raging emotions. As parents, our first reaction is often to be strict and firm; nipping the disobedience as quickly as possible. Our desire is to remedy the situation and get things back to normal.
I wonder how often such circumstances could be dissolved with a simple hug. Instead of laying down the law, what if we chose affection? Would this solve the problem and excuse their disobedience? Definitely not. I imagine it might prevent the problem from escalating, however.
When our children understand that we love them and only want what’s best for them, when they feel our affection for them, they are more likely to hear our words. If we were to start our correction or training with encouragement and understanding our children might be more willing to admit failure and reconcile.
To be fair, most of the time our young adults don’t even know what upsets them. Hormones are raging through their system and even little things set them off. Receiving a comforting hug or squeeze on the shoulder helps center them and bring them back into focus. It might help to remember how we felt at their age.
Hopefully this will encourage each of us to reach out to our young people. Discipline is not the only answer, sometimes what our kids need is a hug.
Time to Chime In: Do you find it hard to be affectionate with your teen? Share your ideas on how you bond with your young adult.