6 ways parents + adult children can improve their relationship
A lot of people comment on how close our family is. Believe it or not, I didn’t always have a great relationship with my parents. Don’t get me wrong, I am very blessed with having a great family and being close with my brothers. But don’t be fooled! We definitely have had our growing pains as ANY family does. I’ve finally reached a point where my parents and I can actually be friends, not just have them be my parents.
Here are 6 tips on how parents + adult children can improve their relationship:
1. Respecting each other’s boundaries
You want to recognize where their hot spots are and they too recognize where yours are. I.e. if my parents ever start “nagging” me about something, it bugs me because it makes me feel like I’m a child again. Be clear what is acceptable and what is not.
2. Speak to each other like adults
If you want to have a better relationship with your parents and be friends, then don’t act or speak like a child. They’re not “mommy and daddy” doing everything for you anymore. For parents, treat your child like an equal and don’t talk down to them. Gently remind your parents that you’re an adult now and can make your own decisions.
3. Making sure you’re giving each other space
This was a big one for me. I find when you graduate high school and you’re living with your parents, it’s a struggle. Especially if you move away and then move BACK in with them. When I finally moved out to live on my own, it made such a big difference in our relationship. Why? Because we weren’t in each others faces. We give each other space. That way, when we do see each other, there is more of a novelty and we cherish the time together.
4. Know each other’s limits
It’s great when you’re friends with your parents and you can hang out. But also keep in mind that your parents might need a break from you, or you might need some space from them. Personally, I visit with my parents quite a bit, but sometimes if I see them a lot or involve them in my life too much, it gets to the point where I’m like oookkk lol. Don’t feel guilty about setting those boundaries.
5. Speak to your parents in their language of love
Different people have different ways of expressing how they care. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll notice my mom and I’s thing is to watch the Bachelor together every week. That is something we both love doing together so we stick with that. Find a mutual activity that both you and your parents love doing together.
6. Treat your parents like you would a guest
For example, if your parents host you for dinner, offer to bring something to contribute and help clean up. Just because it’s your parents, doesn’t mean you don’t have to lift a finger. Ask yourself if you would treat a friend differently in the same situation.
Remember, your relationship with your parents is a journey. It is so rewarding to have a happy, healthy relationship with them but you have to work at it and communicate.