Communication With Your Teenager

Trust Your Mom

Having good communication with your teenager is hard, but so important. I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that. It takes good communication to get them to trust you.

We’ve had several discussions on how to handle communication. We’ve gone back and forth and I think we are finally at a point where we can communicate, talk and have trust.

The best conversations I have with my kids are in the car. I used to drive them to school when they were younger. Looking back, I know that’s when I learned a lot about what they were thinking.

Over the years I’ve had to make coming to me a safe place to go when they need help. I’m not talking about tying a shoe or doing laundry for them, but when there’s peer pressure.

They have heard many things from me, including how to get away with not giving in or if it’s a hard situation how to get out of it. For example, if they are in a situation where they are being super pressured into drinking a beer, go to the bathroom, dump out the beer and fill it with water. Nobody will know.

If there ride has been drinking or doing drugs or if they themselves are too drunk to drive, I’ve told them to call me and I’ll come get them no questions asked.

One day my younger son said “I know you’ve said I can call and no questions asked, but I feel like you will get mad at me”. I had to think fast on my feet. How can I make him feel safe and trust me.

Ah ha!

I told him “if that happens and I start giving you a hard time just remind me I said no questions asked. However, I will be so happy that you did the right thing and you won’t die or kill someone I’m sure I won’t be mad.”

The town I live in has lost a number of kids because someone got behind the wheel and the others got in the car with them. No parent should have to deal with that. Teach them well and offer them a no questions asked way out so they feel safe.

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I Finished My Challenge

Yesterday is the last day of my challenge to post content in my blog for 30 days. I’m excited because I finished my challenge. I didn’t get to do each of the thirty days, but I was able to post many of the days in the challenge. About 80%. I wanted to do 30 posts, but when I look at what life has brought I’m proud of how much I’ve done.

Now I look forward to posting blogs on a consistent basis with lots of great information. That said, I won’t be posting everyday, but will do post consistently. That will be one of my goals.

I learned a lot and enjoyed passing on information. For me my blog is successful if I can pass on helpful information with a rant here and there. Please continue to read my blog and post your comments on my blog page. I want to remind you to sign up to receive my blog posts via email. Just Click Here and fill in your name and fill in your email address.

I am Looking forward to my future and what blogging has to bring. Now I’d like to ask a favor. Go to my blog and tell me what you think by writing a comment on my blog page and tell me what you want to know more about. Topics you’d like to see me blog about. I really want your feedback. If you would prefer to send me an email That would be great too. Whatever works for you. I want to continue, but want to write about things that you are interested in.

Thank you for reading my blog and Hope you are enjoying your holidays! Keep on reading.

10 tips to help someone grieving

When you lose a loved one it is so hard. Their world has just been turned completely upside down. One of the hardest things is for those that aren’t affected by this tragedy that want to do something but just don’t know what to do. Here’s 10 tips to help someone grieving.

  1. Send a card, sympathy or just a thinking about you card. It’s a small way for people to feel that people are thinking of them.
  2. Get them restaurant gift cards. Sometimes it’s all you can do to get out of bed. Cooking makes eating an unimaginable chore.
  3. When you see them, say hello or I’m sorry, acknowledging their loss is so simple but all that’s needed. People struggle with what to say when a simple I’m sorry is perfect.
  4. Don’t try to solve the “problem”, there is no problem to solve, they just need time and patience to work through their grief.
  5. See if someone has put together a list of things they need, like meals, shopping, cleaning, laundry, etc.
  6. Make a donation to help the family financially if there is a gofundme.com page. Even $5 helps. The last thing people want to do is worry about the small stuff and this is a way to help them.
  7. If there’s no gofundme.com page then make a donation in memory of the loved one that died.
  8. Let them cry if they want and if they don’t cry, don’t be worried. Everyone deals with grief differently and whether or not crying is present doesn’t mean they don’t feel the loss.
  9. Don’t exclude them from invitations, they may say no, but being remembered is important. Especially three months down the road when everyone has gone back to their everyday lives.
  10. Most important be patient, it takes time and each person is on their own time frames. Let them know it’s ok to change their mind last minute. If they are having a bad day the last thing they want to do is put on their happy face and be cheerful.

These are just a few things that are helpful when trying to help someone grieving. In the very beginning grief is all they can see. By using some of these tips it allows them to feel normal. Normal has changed for them and it will take a while to find the new normal.

I think the most important tip is to be patient. Sometimes they just need to stay home and rest, or find something else to do. Know that whatever they do is normal. Normal for them, but it is normal.

Dealing With Grief During the Holidays

It’s hard when you are dealing with grief during the holidays. Grief is hard enough. Then you add the cheer that’s all around you.

When my husband died on Thanksgiving, I remember going Christmas Shopping in early December. People were so happy and cheerful. I felt so alone. Nobody could even come close to understanding the loneliness and sadness I was feeling.

As hard as it was I had to just go on and remember that the people around me don’t know what happened to me. And they should be enjoying the holidays.

As much as I wanted to I couldn’t. It was everything I could do to go out in public without crying. But I managed. The one thing I learned is that people didn’t understand and I unfortunately had to just deal with it. Sure I could have played the violin but I knew that there was no way for people to know or understand unless they were in my shoes.

I learned early on that you can’t fault people for not understanding and that even though I was the one grieving I had to give people the benefit of the doubt.

My saving grace was that I went to a bereavement group. That helped keep me from feeling so alone even though I was. Don’t get me wrong, there were people around. My parents even came in and stayed with me for a while. But I the alone is the feeling inside. You can be in a crowded room and feel alone. That’s when I learned the true meaning of feeling alone.

So what do you do over the holidays? Well it’s not easy, but you have to give yourself permission to change your mind. You may feel great today but not tomorrow. The best thing to do is to make plans with the preface that you may not feel up to it that day. Knowing that you have plans and that it’s ok to change your mind makes all the difference in the world.

You will be surprised at how much people will understand. I always tell people that they can use me. You can too. If you have plans and you decide last minute you aren’t up for it, tell them Jackie gave you permission to change your mind for at least one year after your loss.

Remember, dealing with grief over the holidays is hard, but not impossible. Keep your chin up and do the best you can.