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Connecting With Your Teen Daughter

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
October 25, 2021 6:00 am

Connecting With Your Teen Daughter

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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October 25, 2021 6:00 am

Kari Kampakis offers insight into the world of teen girls and explains how mothers can strengthen their relationships with their daughters.

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It really matters that we keep a pulse in our lives that there's a lot at stake. Teenagers are struggling and we don't have that relationship and placed something's wrong and a mighty acting out in my come out as anger or something else really trying to build that bridge to them so that they know they can come to us and we can show them God's love and help them get through the struggles are going very good character back as soon she's with us today on Focus on the Family your hostess focus president Dr. Jim Daly and John Fuller. I want to speak to the mom because you have a powerful influence for your children's lives.

I see it through my work with turquoise and it's amazing how much of it has with our kids in any relationship. It takes intentionality and care. Marriage and parenting. The relationships all around you here Focus on the Family we want to remind you that God has equipped you to be your daughter's mother in order to concentrate on that theme today with our guests.

I think the wonderful way to see your role as mom and what you're there to do and were going to unpack all of that and we want to help you be the best mom you can be and we know your heart is there to talk to some dad yeah okay moms never say that mom's like I would be perfect and working to discuss how to be better yet. And Kerry compactness is with us and she's a blogger and a speaker from Birmingham, Alabama, and she and her husband Harry have four girls Ella Sophie Marie Claire and Camille, and she's written a number of books I want to look at today ties right into what you were talking about humans called love her well.

10 ways to find joy in connection with your teenage daughter and of course we have copies of that here call 800 a family, 800-232-6459 were stop by the episode notes where will have the link Gary welcome to Focus on the Family, thanks for having me. I'm actually excited to talk to about this because it it's out of my space.

I have two boys. I am not raising girls. I have my wife Jean was a wonderful daughter actually asked her this today because I know I said what can a daughter, were you and she said I was a pretty good daughter but she reminded me of a story where she wrote dear Abby when she was like 14 or 15 complaining that her mom would not let her date until she was 16 and how upset she was about that because she's such a good daughter she could trust me. To date, early on not to mess up and she said it was so hormonal and I said it will read is that the normal thing so let's just start there. I mean with that teen daughter is there. Just a lot of hormones there in sync with any teenagers, and especially it's her first child that you don't really see coming because you don't I can say now in my fourth child getting there and a little bit what to expect, that without first one and I think you're also coming out of that sweet spot of parenting, diapers, or statement in the night there.

Easy to pretty capable of taking care of themselves on being at that 9 to 11-year-old range and then all of a sudden they are being thrown into puberty and hormones a lot of social shakeups.

We now social media there doing that and their brains are not fully developed, as we all night and that really it can be hard because they might be something like your wife did. That's pretty at character and his mom's you know when you hear about that. It's hard not to feel that rejection or take it personally. And a really is important to know that this is normal for that stage of life that their learning and growing. Just as were learning and growing that had seen in a balance. Loving them for the teenage years with all same parenting them for the teenage years right it is so easy to go that direction. Talk about all the difficulties right with this all of a sudden my daughter was crying. I did know why. When you look back raising four daughters are still in that mean you're still active, raising these wonderful girls. What's been one of the high points for you let's let's really start there. What's been something with back hunger while that that was really good yeah that high point of teenagers is just getting denied them as people, and realizing that they're not a child anymore that I'm seeing their adult personality and being out has some date conversations in just the laughter and you know there may met some even them with all my daughters in the car and they all have different personalities and I felt like this feels like the right trip. I used to take my college girlfriends where everybody's different personality neck shaman and they all their own quirks and idiosyncrasies, but it just the great dynamic is so fine and that's the fun part to me is that it's a different one when they were little and I think that's where China captures parents are.

That is how points and those Joe ways in those moments we feel connected and we thought were building a strong family bonds. We really want and I went over this time Morgan unfold together and I'm looking forward to that because I know where this is going, the listeners have to hang tight because that's the goal want to be not only your adult child's parent but you need to transition to being their friend and that that is a good thing.

It's not a bad thing when you're grown child says hey it's it's great being your friend that's wonderful that express return. He said the other night there was such a touching thing here is that I just I just love the fact that we are friends and we have a lifetime of friendship together. I was like wow but while raising kids can be difficult. We touch on that. There are those challenges. I love the story, the bareknuckle story of your husband coming home and finding you sobbing in a closet. What would happen and what did that teach you. Yes, this was my oldest daughter's 19th of this is when she was 13, and keep in mind that since she was a baby I been hearing that script are you baby so beautiful, that just might know she's a teenager you're in for it and we have four daughters you hear that ever and ever.

Just that narrative that negative narrative in the world really by and say that now think in my girls will be that way. But what happened was that she started to become a teenager in the normal things started happening. Our relationship started to change started to blame it on her that his mom's rights and my response was I got to share these goals his balls.

I've got to dig in my heels and I just was like initiate disparate attitudes got a get her's assets got gay and I wasn't looking at myself. What happened was it just created this gulf between us and not even remember what we're fighting ever. That's how silly the arguments were that it been a couple months not even share with my husband because I kept thinking this will pass. Soups shall start listening to me again will close relationship back. You know, nave name mom and him and things are just getting worse and we had a fight when they before school and she went to school when I was just I was about apologize and I'm not apologizing, and it was an hour later my house was quiet and I think that's when God's spirit was really able to speak to me and I just started having all this regret for our relationship and I was. I realize like this gulf between us is getting bigger and I just fell to my knees in my closet just crying and I was I was writing books for teenage girls at the time. I've written two books for teenage girl cells traveling alive or speaking to these moms and these teenage girls being called an expert which I did for like and said a man remember being in my closet, thinking nobody can ever know about this rock-bottom parenting moment that it was really the main route humbled myself and I just let God my eyes to the problem was really me and house responding to her and I was making the problem worse. Let me get into that a little bit on the half of the minimums listening right now saying no, they are sassy they are fussy they are emotional. It is their fault right there, have you come to that realization that you can only control you. This is true, raising boys to come to the parenting moment where you go okay I can't control them right what you think the Lord looks down upon us. I cannot control these creatures.

I made right. It's very similar I think it's the whole metaphor. I think that's what the Lord is done here for us, especially his parents. As we look at these rascals and not behaving the way we want them to behave. But the reality is there is a lot of pain and that and not everybody has that closet Revelation if I could call it that come to the point we are saying okay I got to work on me because that's all I can do right so what advice do you have for that mom that still shouting. I was right now saying you don't know my daughter right. I think the first point to be able to do that.

I called the fearless self inventory you to really feel secure and that God's love for you and I had to relate to build a look at myself and just admit like this is where I'm failing that I'm reacting to her and I realize it was my pride that it was my pride getting in the way because I wanted to look like a superstar. Mom and Tina up until that point at, had she was pretty compliant child and so suddenly our relationship was changing and I just blamed it on her but I wasn't looking at when she got sassy Ella sassy back.

I was just mirroring her reaction and I could look back and say I know I'm acting like a 16-year-old. You know I'm not acting like the adult in the situation pouch yes subjects and and I think I was taking some of those things we do when their little you know when their little we are pretty blunt, don't run in straight, don't do this, you know, and we take the same parenting strategies into the teenage years and it doesn't always translate because it doesn't always say we can't wait to parent in a way and we had some notes are to go in the back door.

We define ways to speak the truth in love, and would really help me during that time that I was struggling.

I was like, this is my got a start, how to parent her, but also love her and not lose this relationship.

At the very time that I want demised teenage years. That in fact one of the strategies you talk about and love her well is this idea of well-timed communication that you know when I was reading that I was thinking okay this this takes effort. So I think it that one level speak to the fact that you have to be intentional about these moments. You have to be aware of them does take intuitiveness to say okay I gotta think about this and then talk about the timely communication. What is that look like yes it's funny with each book I write. There's always a chapter or story that readers relate to the most in that first chapter is to choose your words and your time and carefully. That's the number one chapter and story that opening story that readers relate to Dave and I say I saw myself in that situation and basically I think is mom sometimes we have a thought or we say something we need to correct our chutneys to walk on and if there like me. I'm like I don't say it now, forget and you know you feel this pressure to get it right because the believing time in a few years, said you want to try to help shape them the way you want to say that sometimes it's not the best timing to say something or the best way to say something you talk your husband. I know how this works but dogs are part of this you to decide to talk to your husband about it.

He's going want to start your daughter right like I need you to help me here that the story I used in the in the book was had a daughter. She was having a breakout of her face that we were in the car having this great conversation just the kind of conversations you want to have your teenager playing the music was a beautiful day. We parked the car and a look at over and all of a sudden what stands out to me is the sunlight on her face and her Acme is flared up and Sam starting to ask her like mom's day are using your acne medication and I stop myself and on it was God stopping me because I had done the same thing a few months earlier, and I know my daughter. She's very responsible. She wanted to cite me to be gone more than anybody else. It was a sensitive subject been trying all these cranes for several months and when I asked her few months earlier she'd been using her medication. She said yes I know my face looks terrible and I just saw her look. She just tightly was a downer and not thought to myself if I say this now I know she's using her cranes is just totally going to undo that moment. We just had in the car so I'm going to keep my mouth shut and just wait and she got out the car happy. That memory was saved and I was. I learned a lesson that like I didn't have to say that then I could say that conversation for later and find the right time to do it.

I'm smiling just did that the other night with one of the Lord didn't stop me or maybe drive and I didn't hear him right exactly the same thing was like are you washing your face so a couple times I have stopped, but now I will stop that admonition. Are you through his parents. You know were jumping on things you know, I know you don't think that Tina Roth are not aware of it down sometimes. I know this conversation needs to be had, but God gave me the words like, what's a way I can, Hannah gently subtly slotted this conversation without them getting defensive because I know it's a sensitive subject. Yeah, let me ask you this, and again I don't have the experience of help me understand it, but I've read a lot of data on this when moms and daughters are fighting, whatever that may look like there tends to be this reconciliation. They may be sobbing together. The bang there hugging. I'm so sorry about happens over some period of time with boys with moms what I read often and some of the literature is boisterous, take it a shame.

Mom is correcting them and look me in the boys don't want to look you in the because it's shameful.

I did something wrong. I disappointed you and the kind of cocoon where it sounds like daughters you can get through it.

Just another spat right is that accurate on the daughter side is that how it works.

Yes I think that's really helped.

I guess inspire me and empower me is just naming the importance of conflict resolution and really realizing we know we've all been parenting a long time that in any long-term relationship, whether it's with your child or your marriage you're going to have some conflict and if there's not conflict, he might not be honest with each other that you know there's all this research says is that John Gottman is America's top couples therapist.

He said the number one predictor of success in marriage is how wealthy people can work the conflict right and take that into Penny my daughter instead of being so scared every time we cut conflict is teacher healthy ways to work through this because I see this in my work with teen girls. These friendships and because they get mad at each other and they can't resolve the conflict they can express how they were hurt or they express it in an unhealthy way and it just ruins our relationships nobody's really teaching them that that this has consequences for their marriage for their career.

For every relationship in the future.

So I started thinking United in my relationship with my daughter this is unconditional love. Even if she gets it wrong she's not going to lose my love. And so what better place to learn how to resolve conflict in a healthy way and we day fight that come to get the meaning to your arguments dowsing as you and I should've a moment ago, which was how do you not let yourself be triggered to act like that 16-year-old with your 16-year-old you start this fight Brian what do you think about when your emotions are tempted.

How do you back up and say okay let me be the adult in the room as you described it right what I think and I think you've alleged this taste sometimes wait to fail to get it right next time get wrong.

First in this say okay, next time I'm going to respond differently.

I know better. I'm going to do it differently, so that's helpmate is just admitting to my daughter I messed up. I'm going to work on this and then in the future, trying to do differently and if I doubt if I failed, which I day apologizing again, but just really trying to get it right and I also I think that and I do think this is one way that moms fail themselves is that we are not keeping ourselves and fighting condition that sometimes were not in a strong place that that makes us really reactive to what our kids are dealing said the older I get, the more I'm liking in my friendships and my relationships of husband and other people who love me that's like a form of self-care because these are the people that build me up that help me stay strong for when I do turn around and love my daughter and try to keep loving her, even when she's not acting very lovable. That's a good point when your bucket isn't to respond with probably something very empty as well some great insights today from Carrie can pack us on Focus on the Family and were so glad to have her here talking about some of the content in her book love her well. 10 ways to find joy in connection with your teenage daughter and you can find details about getting your copy of the book of the links are in the show notes. Probably should assess a while ago, but it describes the world, especially for someone like Jean and me with no daughters what is the world like for teen girl to just breaks my heart and I think that is really that is something that can help mothers soften tour their daughters is what were saying on the outside that hardness of that edginess. Usually they're struggling on the inside but even I saved the number-one email and phone call I get is just a girl struggling with friendship. I think they live in an age of disposable friendships and enough for the teenage years, especially for girls friends are like oxygen someone something is wrong in that area of life. It is devastating saved their pennies. Friendship struggles anxiety.

You talk to any counselor you can even get into the counselor now, because anxieties become such an issue, especially since the corn saying I'm not only the teenage girls but teenage boys to a depression, the suicide rate for teenage girls I think is the highest it's been 40 years and say that's one thing I just want to really encourage parents is that it really matters that we keep a pulse on their lives that there's a lot at stake. If our teenagers are struggling and we don't have that relationship in place to be able to sense that something's wrong and they might be acting out in my come out as anger or something else that really trying to build that bridge to them so that they know they can come to us and that we can show them God's love and help them get through the struggles are going through and that is so good in preparing our kids for adulthood you suggest a few things like talking about the five second decision. I really like that. Describe the five second decision yes A&M learned that their experience that sometimes we parents are put on the spot. You know your child comes to you that got three friends with them. They ask you cast the night someone says house and you got five seconds to make a decision and you're thinking. I don't know, someone said I don't know the parents. I don't know what kind of environment that might be, but also talking our children insane that you're going to be any situations where you have these five second decisions and really pre-decide what you want to day, so it might be your party and somebody offers you a drink.

You got five seconds to make that decision and it's going to fall. Awkward. But how do you get to that awkwardness and try to do the right thing. Another example from another standpoint I had a friend that she was at the lake with her daughter and a bunch of their friends. I think that there 14-year-old girls now guess the girls are older they were 16 because the boys are driving the day that these two boys in the class pulled up and asked the girls they wanted to go riding with them and say my friend was like my husband. I had to step away from it because one we don't know what kind of drivers. These boys are were responsible for all these girls and his mom dated. The boys are just been busted for drinking by their mother and say she's like we had that fast second decision and they decided not to let the girls gay, which is so hard because of parent you know you're totally embarrassed and mad at you but you not think as we learn to make as fast second decisions as parents and kind of stand strong. It helps model that for our children today. The same thing in their life. Take sure that's good. Yeah, that works were daughters and sons and a good rule of thumb in my opinion, how do you pray for your daughters.

I know how I pray for sons but work. What role does faith play in your home and how you pray for them.

He age. I pray for them all the time you when they were little. I probably did more praying over them when they were young and I was tucking them into bad now. I do a lot of prayers throughout the day.

Now, one daughter that's in college so I'm praying for her just her safety and protection and get people coming into her life that I just really proud long neck and prayed a fast second prayer if I'm worried about something. If there's nothing that's making me anxious just ending that prayer to God that yeah yeah I just really suck at two kids with food allergies.

One of them had an allergic reaction last week and that unite with me come in at a town I made Nina my husband's with me that created a lot of anxiety and made the passkey day since I just have really had to lean in them a prayer life and my faith in God please protect them. Especially if I'm not, they are given the tools they might need say I don't really have a system, but I just just continually through the day as they come to mind are as I'm having quiet time.

I think a specific prayers that I think might be helpful. Let's talk about the positive side you just mentioned were few ways that you can enjoy your teen girl in the teen girl years yes but is leaning seriously, you can enjoy this.

Yes there so fine and they just their energy and excitement and it doesn't take much to make them happy and that's what so cool that a teenager is that you don't have to plan some fancy trap as she sees little daily gestures that mean a lot.

My thoughts are girl. His mother passed away a few years ago.

She was sharing her best memories with her mom and she said she danced since I so many great memories are made as they were traveling to these dance competitions but her mom would also do things like if she knew she had a hard week at school received a big test date that she have her favorite Greek salad waiting for a time just that little act of love like I know you I see you and I'm proud of you. She said one time she went on a trip with her friends and her mom Shep and her suitcase at the date and her mama packed in a blouse in her suitcase and some snacks for the friends it's I think is just as little things like that that you know we say our daughters were like you are smart and kind and beautiful. We say how amazing they are but they don't say that about themselves that they they are surrounded by girls who are smart and kind and beautiful and so just being singled out like that and then that they are so loved by their parents and showing God's love that way, I think, is now in their hearts even if they love ICs or eccentric salads or a sigh, he bowls her case. So I think case is always a huge ship for teenagers united all their friends are come in your house after they've been out have some snacks out there favorite fades. Just little things like that right here then you mentioned the book some core beliefs about parenting.

I think it be great for the listeners and viewers to hear those what are the well. A few of them are at one parenting is too big and challenging for parents to handle alone and God didn't create us to handle a lion, he is there to support us and we also need community to get there with us. Another big one is that you know we know what God wants. He wants unity and harmony in our relationships women enemy who wants to destroy our relationships and a lot of times we feel that tension with our daughter that he might be at work. They are playing a proprietor other things. The Greek word for devil is the place and it means the one who divides of had a knife that something one division that he might be kind of tinkering up something here and to relate lean into my faith and pray for God to help guide me to cheat, make the right choices. Another important one is to to know that every child and every parent is just one decision away from falling off a cliff.

Every child is just one decision away from making their parents look like the worst parents on earth.

And as we remember that were less likely to judge other parents whose kids have messed up were more likely to show mercy and you know to what they these the fallouts with our children when they mess up because we've gotten admit that there came in and were all sinful and we all need a Savior. And then that's probably the biggest parenting point of all is that were not meant to do this aligned and even our failures because God is so good he can use them for redemption and restoration and just let us show the love of Christ, our children and others made that story start of the book without me failing. I plan to never tell anybody. Yet God, years later, the opening to a book and some may am like God is so good. I never would've thought that this is where that story would get in.

I think you know the last obvious questions for that mom were the relationship is broken know she's headed into the closet with all that emotion and the tears of what is going on in this relationship. Everything I say is wrong.

Everything I do is wrong and she just seems to hate me. What do you suggest to her to begin to change that right. I just suggest that just to keep being proactive. Keep loving your daughter keep showing love, even if it's not reciprocated. But today that the mom has to be in a good place so notes were reliant on our daughters to make us feel good to get that love back. And they're not our signs and so that's why we've got to have the love of our spouse or for not married. Our friends are therapist or our parents or coworkers to really invest in building a strong community of people who see the good in you and encourage you.

Hey, you know how hard you're trying even that your child doesn't and just to pray and ask God like God. You see my faithfulness and I'm just trusting you with this child in our relationship and just praying for the restoration they are but but don't give up on your child or yourself or God just keep doing that because children are typically not going to come to us saying I want have a stronger relationship. It really is up to us as parents to build that bridge and just to keep trying. One day hopefully her daughter, you know, 20 years now might like how my mom must've really loves me.

You know when she's in a more mature place to say that she Loving me and trying even that I was being salty Taylor that's good advice.

This is been so good. I hope encouraging to the mom's in the audience wherever there may be there just in front of the teenage years, or maybe there now into the twentysomethings and they need to do some repair work. This is an excellent resource. Your book love her well competitors I think that's God's heart for your relationship with your daughter as well and of course we have something here. Focus John Brielle magazine for teen girls so you know, a few years ago we had to suspend that we brought it back and it's a great tool when I'm traveling and talking to audiences, so many young women come up and will say to me you know I am a subscriber to Brio. Thank you for that magazine meant so much to me. And so I'd encourage you to consider getting a subscription to Brio magazine for your chin girl and then also obviously carries great book love her. Well, if you can make a gift to Focus on the Family of any amount will send it as our way of saying thank you for being part of the ministry. If you can afford it. We say this often. John we want you to have this or just get in touch with us to trust that others will cover that expense of ministering to you so thank you for your support and advance the care. Thank you so much for being with. Thank you. This is also I have loved like that. I love your ministry for so long and praise God. Yeah, maybe just a wonderful work that you will think you will always appreciate that you can get in touch with us here at Focus on the Family by calling 800 the letter a in the word family 800-232-6459 or check out the episode notes cortisol Brielle Mike and next time will have Dr. Catherine Butler here, offering a difficult respect on end-of-life decision. While death is never our original purpose and it is wrong as the wages of our sin.

The cross transforms death from something to be avoided at all cost to something that promises us hope on behalf of Jim Bailey and the entire team. Thanks for joining us for Focus on the Family I'm John Fuller and putting you back once you and your family thrive.

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