0:00:03 – Speaker 1
Hey, this is Mandy and Kim with nextTalk, where we are passionate about keeping kids safe in the digital world.
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So today I am interviewing Mandy. We’re kind of looking behind the curtain after all these years, all the things you’ve been through Not that we haven’t shared stuff along the way, not that you haven’t been transparent and open I mean, that is essentially our show and your books. But I think you’re at this turning point now where it’s all coming to the surface and you’re reflecting a lot as you’re getting ready to send your oldest off to college And we thought this would be kind of cool for me to interview you about parenting. What does it mean for you now? What does it look like in this stage?
0:01:16 – Speaker 1
Well, Kim, I think that you just wanted to interview me so we could capture me crying like a baby.
0:01:22 – Speaker 2
Okay, well, that too Let’s be, honest.
0:01:27 – Speaker 1
It’s emotional, it’s a whole new thing. Yesterday I was in Sam’s Club and I picked up some bread and the expiration date was past the date that she’ll be here. And I just start crying and Sam’s like the bread’s going to be here and my baby is not. What is happening right now? Something wrong with that? And so the great thing is I don’t feel like I need to be strong for her because she’s so excited and she’s going to do great, and so I texted it to our group chat and then we just laughed about it And I think it’s important for kids to understand we’re really going to miss them. It’s okay to show them that vulnerability. I think that’s important, as long as we’re not crazy, like hanging onto her leg and not letting her go. Don’t be that crazy mom.
0:02:20 – Speaker 2
But you know what I mean.
0:02:21 – Speaker 1
Just being honest and vulnerable. I walked into the. We have all of her stuff as she’s packing it from her room, She’s putting it in the game room when it’s like ready to load the cart. We have a whole system right. And so I walked into the game room the other day and just seeing the stack of boxes, I just lost it And she even imagine it’s a lot. It’s a lot. I walked into her closet last night and it’s completely empty And the only thing that remains is like keepsake stuff And I don’t know. It’s definitely a milestone and it’s definitely a moment and I definitely have been emotional.
0:03:00 – Speaker 2
I’ve been emotional, and she’s not my kid, so I’m in trouble, for when it’s my turn, my clothes and sprints are like please stop texting me.
0:03:08 – Speaker 1
I’m making them cry all the time too.
0:03:12 – Speaker 2
Well, you know, and this is kind of on two levels, i was thinking about this Not only is she your first and she’s your baby and she’s heading off, but also, like, literally, our organization started in her closet, it’s her, you know. And so, on two levels, our whole careers, you and I, and what we do every day, and then your parenting life, those two have merged in this moment and it’s a transition, you know, like I said so, It has been really cool to see it all come together.
0:03:40 – Speaker 1
I mean, only God could orchestrate such a thing right Over a little question, Oh my gosh. But here we are and we’re going to get through it. Kim, I’m going to need a chocolate and guacamole.
0:03:53 – Speaker 2
I’ve already made my grocery list and planned what’s coming to your door. I mean, it’s happening. I just I think the important thing about this show is just adding on to what you’ve already committed to do, which you’ve already been transparent all these years. You’ve done the hard work of looking in the mirror, you’ve pivoted a million times with your parenting and you’ve shared your life with us, and that’s what has made your books in this show so great, because it’s just here’s what works and here’s what doesn’t, and we see the fruit of that with your daughter. So it’s kind of like we are celebrating with you. You know, we’ve walked along with you and see like, okay, this really works. Look at her go. So it’s it’s important for all of us, i think, to take a minute and reflect and then pick your brain, tell us the real details of anything that you know you’re able to see differently or not, and so that’s what my questions are based on today. Are you ready?
0:04:53 – Speaker 1
I just feel like everything’s racing in my, in my mind of things that I did wrong, pivotal moments in our relationship that I’m really glad I dug into. Like all those things are racing through my mind right now.
0:05:05 – Speaker 2
Okay, Well, let’s dig in then. We asked the listeners too. There’s a couple of questions I’m going to put in later from them, but I wanted to start with just a basic question that I think most people, if they had you for a minute at a table for coffee, they would ask you, looking back over the years, what would you say are the top three things you’ve realized or learned or witnessed that have helped your relationship with your kid?
0:05:33 – Speaker 1
Oh well, i number one is going to sound cliche, but it’s true. Jesus is the answer. He’s the answer in all the parenting and because the world shifts all the time on what’s trendy, what’s cool, what’s not, and so that that Jesus and that foundation I mean. When she asked that first question in fourth grade, i have never in my life studied the Bible as much as I did, because I wanted to give her the right answer. I wanted to give her God’s answer, and that brought me closer to the Lord And I think that’s transformed our relationship more than anything, that I became closer to the Lord And I really dug in and said what does God say about all these things, all these hard questions that they’re asking me? And so that’s one, and I know it’s cliche, but it’s true, he’s the solution. He’s the solution. Every time I’ve wanted to lose my mind, i’ve quoted James 1.19 to myself and it has saved our relationship so many times.
0:06:31 – Speaker 2
Well, and if anybody is wondering, well what is she talking about? the question? when her daughter was in the fourth grade, she was standing in her closet and asked her a question that Mandy didn’t know about this thing until she was in college, and so it was a highly sexualized question that she asked. That we don’t share because she asked Mandy, please not to give the details of that, and part of what we do here and part of what Mandy has done so great is not overstep that boundary and keep those promises to her kids in those kinds of situations. So just keep in mind it was a highly sexualized question and that led Mandy to dig into the Bible to find the answer, based on what God says, not what the world says or what Mandy thought.
0:07:16 – Speaker 1
And that relationship with Jesus, that foundation, i mean it really has been the thing that’s gotten us through so many difficult times, so many. Am I doing this right? You know all the things? I just keep coming back to scripture and it has kept us grounded. So that’s number one. I think the second thing is, you know, i mean it’s our staple here at nextTalk but open communication, just committing to answering their questions, committing to not sweeping and under the rug, committing to I’m going to go there even if I don’t think they’re ready. If they’re asking they’re ready, it’s time to go there.
You, in your mind, you don’t want to have to explain these things to your kids, but the world is. And so now’s your chance, parents, to be the voice to be, to point them to Jesus, to ground them in truth, and oftentimes we miss it because we’re like they’re too young. So that open communication extremely important. I think number three is this You know I’ve said Jesus and open communication. I think number three is kind of going to sound weird as I say it, but it’s true. Just because you’re doing one and two, it doesn’t mean your kid’s not going to struggle.
0:08:33 – Speaker 2
0:08:34 – Speaker 1
And I think so many times we think we go to church, we pray, we keep them in scripture, we’re talking about all the things. So why isn’t this working? It’s because Satan is a real enemy and he is trying to get our kids, he’s trying to win them over, And so it does not mean that your kid will not struggle. And I think that’s where number one comes in. Really helpful is because when they do start to struggle, it’s it’s so hard, but you pray. You, every day, are saying Lord, speak to them like only you can, you know and you’re, you’re holding true to what God says, no matter what, and, in the end, praying that that’s the foundation that will get them through.
0:09:20 – Speaker 2
It’s funny because a lot of times we think, okay, here’s this expert person and they’re gonna tell me something real tricky, or they’re gonna tell me this secret, and the bottom line is Kind of just like, how do you lose weight, diet and exercise? the bottom line is Jesus. The bottom line is that open communication, the things we talk about all the time, but the truth of that is none of that’s easy. None of that’s easy, and It does require a shift in our parenting. It does require a commitment to Follow on our needs and be humble before the Lord and receive what he tells us, even when it doesn’t make sense and It’s hard work. So, even though those are obvious as if you’ve followed nextTalk for a while and you’ve heard us talk about those things It’s truth and it’s the answer.
0:10:09 – Speaker 1
Well, and I think you know being very vulnerable and transparent here, i think there have been times When they were, when she was younger especially her, i mean, my, my son’s 15 So we’re kind of in it right now with him when I would question Oh my gosh, are we being too open? You know they’ve come to us with this question and we really dug in and is this too much, too fast? and And in the moment I would, i would worry are we doing this right? Maybe we should shelter them more, maybe what? but now She’s getting ready to move out And I think, oh my goodness, that was Satan putting those doubts in my mind, because I cannot imagine Her leaving here without us having all those conversations and digging in.
So anytime, you’re kind of like, oh my gosh, oh my gosh, i shouldn’t be talking about this with my fifth grader. I mean, if they are asking you and they are exposed, you got to talk. You got to talk. Now it’s different. Like don’t go to your four-year-old and be like, okay, today we’re gonna talk about it, don’t do that. That’s not what I’m saying, that’s no, no, but you know what I’m saying. Like being ready when they’re ready, i think it’s very key.
0:11:19 – Speaker 2
Yeah, absolutely Okay. We’re gonna move on to maybe a little bit of a meteor question. What is the one thing you wish you did differently? I mean, we’re assuming there’s only one.
0:11:32 – Speaker 1
Kim, i can’t say just one, well, okay. So first of all, i asked my daughter this question. I’m gonna share a story with you and she’s finally allowing me to share, and and, by the way, one of the things that is very important to me is I never share stories about my kids without asking them first, and I’ve been very intentional about this. So there’s a lot of things that has been happening behind the scenes over the past nine and ten years that They’re not ready for me to share, and so I do want to preface it with that, just because You don’t see the entire. I mean, i have to maintain confidentiality with my kids. That’s the number one thing for me. I don’t care about ratings, i don’t care about likes, i don’t care about any of that stuff, right? Maintaining the relationship with my kids is number one. So when I asked her this, she finally was like okay, you can tell the story. So I asked her this question and she says That time that you called me a spoiled brat.
Oh, my goodness, i did not call her a spoiled brat. We’re still arguing about this. I. What I said to her was these behaviors are someone of a spoiled brat. That is not who you are, but what she heard in the moment was I’m a spoiled brat, like she took that on. And so what a lesson for us parents that we may be saying your behavior is this You, that’s not how you are, but that’s not what they’re hearing sometimes, mm-hmm. So that was funny. I and I got real defensive when she told me that, cuz I was like I did not call you, that I would not. That’s one of our things that we always say at nextTalk. You know, like I would not do that. But my husband was funny. I was telling him about it and he was like listen, if the worst thing that she’s ever gonna say Now that she’s leaving is that you called her a spoiled brat.
0:13:29 – Speaker 2
Like we have success, which I was like is a funny thing, like that’s amazing. If that’s your worst, i’m in trouble. Yeah, that’s not my worst.
0:13:38 – Speaker 1
Okay, so, so how? I would answer that. You know, i did a show with her recently. One of the things we talked about on that show was modesty and how She was really not coming into her own style and her own confidence until very late in high school. And she said, you know, mom just didn’t Allow me to to have that, and so because I was pushing like modesty so much, i kind of see it a little different than she does as a mom. She really wasn’t into style. She let me pick her clothes. So of course I’m gonna pick the modest stuff, like I’m not gonna, yes, you know, shoot. But looking back I Kind of feel like I should have pushed her to have a style more and I I think I was afraid, and I think that boils down to it, and I think that’s my number one thing I wish I had done differently a lot of times.
I wouldn’t Push her certain directions out of fear, mm-hmm. So I won’t push her towards certain clothes, because what if she goes too far with it and it gets crazy? or I don’t want to push her towards boys, because what if she gets crazy with it? or what if I you know what I mean. Like there are certain things and I think that I may have overdone it a bit, quite honestly, and be, and so now here she is, you know, junior, senior and, well, really senior in high school and now into college, finding her style and I’m seeing this confident young lady come out. Then I’m like maybe I suppressed that a bit because of my fear And so I just check your fears is what I would say, because I think a lot of time that prevents us from having conversations And letting our kids really mature and be confident and grow up.
0:15:22 – Speaker 2
That’s a great one, because I think in this over sexualized world, from moms of daughters especially, we’re like oh, how do we walk that line with letting them, you know, feel pretty and confident and girly, without it being like Hoochie? you know, I mean too much, yeah, and the clothes lines don’t help. It’s very difficult to find a good balance in there. So that that is very true. Check ourselves for fear parenting.
0:15:52 – Speaker 1
Well, and I think too, you know, as an 18 year old, you you get to dress a little bit different than a thirteen year old would dress, and my daughter sees that difference like she sees. Okay, i’m into this kind of styling now. You know, crop tops, tank tops, that sort of thing. Maybe that’s not for thirteen year old to wear and that’s something. It’s almost like a privilege that you get, kind of like a phone with social media, you know, you don’t just get it and get to do all at once it’s, it’s something that you earn, and i think we need to approach like dress more like that and i’m using dresses an example, but i really mean everything music, movies, all of it because you can’t keep shielding, shielding, shielding, and then they move out and then they’re exposed to all this stuff and they go nuts.
0:16:39 – Speaker 2
So it has to be a general progression of letting them see other things, other viewpoints, other religions, other thought processes, like all of that is extremely important i will never forget my mom saying that i was sitting on The steps of our apartment and i wanted to wear lipstick and she said if i let you wear lipstick today, than tomorrow it’ll be pantyhose and the next day, yes, pantyhose In the eighties. In the eighties, i wanted to wear pantyhose. I love it. But she was right. She was saying these are things you know with age and with your behavior, that you will earn overtime. And she says you don’t. If i give it to you all now, you won’t know what to do with it and you have nothing to look forward to. And that’s really what you’re saying.
0:17:25 – Speaker 1
I think that’s very wise well, the slippery slope is real and we have to be fully aware of it. But at the same time, we can’t miss our window to teach and i think on some things i may have missed my window because i was pushing it back out of fear. Does that make sense? absolutely. Just be careful you don’t miss your window okay.
0:17:43 – Speaker 2
so I do want to ask you about advice, though, because we have moms who have kids that are young, moms who are in the same stage of life that you are, and moms who have kids that are older. So let’s kind of address it from that angle. if you were having coffee with a mom who has young kids, what would be your best advice for her?
0:18:01 – Speaker 1
So my best advice for her would be and i can’t just do one thing, kim i would say Seek Jesus and find your tribe within the local church. Okay, and the reason i say that is because You need to develop. You need to develop a support group That you’re going to have that will maintain your confidentiality as your kids start to struggle and grow and you have questions And you need someone pointing you to Jesus when those questions arise. So you’re going to need that community. I think that’s extremely important to start building it when they’re little. It has carried me through.
I got a text just the other night from one of my mops friends that our kids went Preschool together and they’ve moved away and we’ve stayed in touch but we’re not super close, you know, because of distance, and we’re going through the same thing of sending our kid to college and we both were having breakdowns and i just thought, man, what a great community that that i have That developed in the local church.
Find a mentor. You need a mentor on this journey, a heads up mama. You need all of these things, but at the end of this, you know, not just your parenting journey, you need it for your mental health And i think this will help you as you start to have problems in your marriage or work or whatever. You will have this community of Christ centered followers to help you through, and i really think that is the biggest advice i would give to young moms. I thought about this question a lot when you told me you were going to ask me, because, you know, open communication does start early and you have to listen to the little things that they’re saying, because then they eventually become big, big things. But, honestly, you can’t listen to the little things if you’re not taking care of yourself, if you’re not adequately Being filled with the Holy Spirit, you know, and and focusing on you as a person to be mentally stable, and so i really feel like that’s the best piece of advice that i can give young moms.
0:20:16 – Speaker 2
I’ve heard from some of our listeners who move to a new area or you know, they’ve got little ones. How do i find that tribe? and i think that’s great advice is start in your local church mobs if you heard, mandy mentioned that his mother’s of preschoolers. There’s so many ministries where you can get involved and i’ll tell you firsthand, that is not my thing, but i did it and it was the best thing i ever did like. It changed my life And it created this community that has supported me through thick and thin. And find something in your local church where you can plug in and meet people with similar age, kids and interests, and even in your school community too, if, if, that’s where you need to go but find people walking through the same things and then the mentors, all of that will come. But i think that’s great advice many, and i can’t imagine doing this without that. It would have been very, very, very difficult.
0:21:12 – Speaker 1
Well, and there were things that you know i haven’t been able to share publicly, that we’ve struggled with, and that community came in very helpful then, because i could cry and say this is what’s happening and I don’t know what’s going on, and you know, and they kept me grounded and they kept me going back to scripture and they kept telling me trust what you’ve taught you’ve, you created the foundation and, and so that has been just extremely important.
And you said, if you’ve moved and you have a new, i moved across the country when my daughter was one year old. I knew no one here, where we are now in texas, i got involved in mothers of preschoolers at my local church and the people that i met there eventually became some of the nextTalk team founding families, and it has carried us all the way through. And so that community is so important. It doesn’t have to be mops. It can be a life group. It can be getting together with three other couples every night, you know, once a week, studying the bible and doing life together, whatever it is, but you need that community.
0:22:13 – Speaker 2
Amen to that. Okay, so that’s for young moms. What about parents of teens or older kids? what would your advice be?
0:22:21 – Speaker 1
i think every parent of teen constantly feels like We are one decision away from chaos, total chaos, and that is normal to feel that way. Their little brains are not developed. They are making knee jerk reactions sometimes. The key, i think, in we talked about this a lot with our kids is we know you’re going to make mistakes, we expect mistakes, but our job as parents is to make sure those aren’t life changing mistakes to where you can’t go back in. You are defined by that mistake and there are some Choices that could land them in that category and so talking with them about that all the time. But you know, if you’re a good family which which most anybody listening to a parent podcast is a good family right, i mean, you’re not going to listen to a parent podcast if you’re not trying to be Anyone listening to this, if you’re feeling like, oh my gosh, i feel like i’m on a roller coaster.
One day i feel like they’re going to be amazing and the next day i feel like this is total chaos, we have messed something up. That’s a normal feeling. That’s a normal feeling of raising a teenager and don’t waver in your faith through. That is what i’m saying. i see a lot of parents when they get to this teenage world years when it’s roller coaster and they will say well, i did all this stuff and it didn’t work, so therefore they start doubting god. That is a hundred percent what satan wants you to do. Do not do that. Do not buckle down on your prayer time. Buckle down in your scripture time when things get rocky. That’s what you do to. To stay the course of the foundation that God has built in your family.
0:24:11 – Speaker 2
That’s great advice, well, and I love that you’re normalizing it, because that’s what Satan also loves to do is make us feel like we’re the only one, like this is only happening in my family. We are failing and that’s not the truth. That’s great advice for a mom of teens to hear.
0:24:26 – Speaker 1
Honestly, if I meet a mom of a teenager and they say our teen is great and perfect and wonderful, you know what I think in my mind and this is maybe judgmental of me But I think they’ve swept everything under the rug and they’re not really facing what’s going on. Yeah, they don’t know, because even if their kid isn’t struggling, their friends are or whatever, and so there’s turmoil within trying to deal with all that. So there’s lots happening and so if you are out here just saying You know, this is amazing, there’s no struggle, i have to doubt that you’re real. That may sound very judgmental of me, but I’m just being honest.
0:25:09 – Speaker 2
I’m just putting it out there. I like it. I like it because it’s true, okay, so What does it mean to look in the mirror for you to actually do the work? Because that’s you know, kind of going back to our your first answer When we started the show. I think that’s so much of what all this boils down to with parenting Is having to look in the mirror and do the work, to be the parent God designed you to be for your kid. So what does that mean to you?
0:25:36 – Speaker 1
Well, it means a couple things. I think I would like to separate this out into two questions. So, first, what does it mean to look in the mirror? So, to me, as your parenting, you’re gonna see these traits bubble out in your kids That you don’t like and you’re like oh, we need to work on that. That is not okay. Like this world, yeah, like, oh my gosh, i am seeing behaviors here of Entitlement and what this is. We need to work on this, right. So you’re gonna see those things.
Often times It’s because we are that way And they are picking it up from us. And so what I mean by that is really looking in the mirror and saying, okay, did this get handed down? family to fam, did? Did this get handed down generation to generation? and it’s something that I’ve picked up, that I don’t even realize I’m doing, and now my kid is doing it and it’s irritating me and I’m thinking this is not okay, but it’s okay for me. And Really, looking in the mirror you know, judgment is one of the things that I’ve had to really look in the mirror and say, oh my gosh. Humility is a really big component in this looking in the mirror because you have to Really be honest with yourself and say, oh my gosh, i am doing that. You guys, some of you have heard the story before.
I had this moment when my son and my husband were leaving the driveway and I he was opening the car door or something, and I said something to him, to my son, that was basically Very sarcastic, almost in a are you stupid? tone Of course That’s the case, you know kind of thing and they drove out of the driveway and I remember standing there Thinking, when you see this sarcastic tone in your kids, this is where they’re getting it. You know how that sarcastic tone with with kids, when they make you feel stupid, and you’re like, well, i didn’t know, you know, and you just feel it’s just that sarcastic. You should know that better. You boomer, even though I’m not a boomer, you know all that sarcasm coming out. And then I I saw it in myself With my kid and the tone that I had, and I had to face that and I had to tell my family. Oh my gosh, this God spoke to me in the driveway today And I am causing this, and so I want us all, as a family, to work on how we treat each other And it’s it’s the humility. It’s the humility. So so that’s the first part of that question.
What does it look like when you say what does it mean to do the do the work? So many things run through my mind when you ask that question. I think that the number one thing that runs through my mind is being up late at night with my teenager and In her, confiding in me about what her friends are going through and what she’s going through, and Me wanting to say ignorance is bliss, because it’s hard. It’s really hard hearing the real truth. And to me, when somebody asked me, what does it mean to do the hard work? I picture that scenario and even though it’s hard to hear, and it’s hard to hear all the things that are really Happening with our kids and our teenagers, especially Man, i’m right now looking back, thinking. I’m glad I did the hard work and it.
It was incredibly hard and there were times when I would cry myself to sleep And there were times I couldn’t sleep because processing everything They’re telling me and Thinking, man, our world is in such big trouble That’s what I kept thinking over and over again like, and not letting that consume me Was really big.
I had to get that under control, because the more they told me and the more they confided in me, the more I was like this world is so messed up. What in the world, like a whole generation, is just spiraling, and so I had to get that under control, and I think, through prayer and scripture and everything God showed me, you know You can’t control the broken world, mandy, but you can control what goes in on in the walls of your home, and you can dig in and do the hard work of All of this right now, and that’s how you protect them. All relationships take work, and so the question is are you willing to commit to it with your husband and kids? Those are the most important relationships I think you’ll ever have, and So, again, we’re like raising up the next generation. This is how we change the world, by what we’re willing to talk about Around our dinner table today, you know, and so that is the key here, and it is Exhausting.
0:30:12 – Speaker 2
I mean I’m tired, just thinking about it Honestly. I think about you on the evenings when I’m exhausted Or I’m overwhelmed or just not in the mood because, let’s just be honest, sometimes you just want some downtime and inevitably that’s a night when one of my kids is ready to talk and I’ll crawl into bed with them and I think about what I see in your kids now, because you did the work of talking through the hard stuff, staying up late for those conversations that mattered, and it is. It’s worth it not easy, but worth it, okay. So, moving on from that, i Want to know what you’d say is your biggest parenting win. You?
0:30:57 – Speaker 1
know, the other day we had this full circle moment and I, my daughter and I, were cooking together And she was helping me make dinner. The boys were gone at practice and Which, by the way, some of the best conversations happen there, where you’ve got the one-on-one and you’re doing an activity. It’s just so good, right? And we were talking about how, when she gets to college, her or her friends may make bad choices or mess up or whatever. And I was telling her that you know, my hope is, no matter what, you’ll always know you can call me always, even if you think I’m not gonna love the choice or love the decision or let whatever. Like I’m the safe place so we can process it together, that you can heal from it. I don’t want you to like sweep it under the rug and act like it didn’t happen And then you live with this thing in your life, that that Satan uses to steal your joy, like we don’t want that. And so we talked about that a lot and how nextTalk has changed her life in the sense of I went from a sheltering, overprotective, helicopter parent to a it’s okay for you to see the world. Let’s experience it together and talk through it. And I think she’s starting to see How different her life is compared to some other people leaving for college and how they are leaving it with their parents.
That has been huge for me, just as a confirmation of God knew what he was doing, because I didn’t know what I was doing. I mean, if we’re, if we’re being really honest, the last nine years was an experiment on my kids to really see if this worked and It worked, i mean, i really just the parenting win here is that I feel like she’ll call me. I feel like when she struggles she’ll let me know. That helps Leaving her. I’m just being honest. Like I cannot imagine, imagine her moving out if we had a fractured relationship and there was no trust there. Like I can’t even imagine how that would feel.
And so that’s what I’m saying. Like all the hard work, it was hard work in the moment and there were so many times I was like Lord, take this for me. I cannot do this, but I’m so glad I I did it. I’m so glad I did the hard work and it wasn’t perfect. There were missteps, there was miscommunication, there was Responding in emotion when I shouldn’t have. There were, there was all sorts of missteps, but I was in it, i wasn’t checked out, and I think that’s the key a few things come to mind here about your biggest parenting Win answer, i mean.
0:33:36 – Speaker 2
The first one that stands out to me is you know I love that you said It helps to let her go, because you know that she’s gonna call you, that you are her safe place. And I want to add to that because I know her and I’ve watched her grow up in not only will she call you, but you’ve given her the Tools to make decisions on her own too, without you there, which is like a huge part of what we do. We want to teach them so that they know what to do on their own when it’s time for them to go, and so she’ll know like I can bring this before the Lord and I can make a decision here. She’s got that confidence. She knows when okay, i need to call home, i have a safe place in my mom and I can discuss through this difficult thing. She’ll know when she needs to just walk away and protect her heart and mind. So all of those tools, i think are just an amazing gift that you’ve given her before she walks out the door.
Number one and number two Doing the hard work and being all in and being not being checked out. I mean, parenting is hard, like you said. Doing this open communication, creating a culture of conversation, is not easy and there are times I mean, if I’m being completely honest, i want to check out and that’s gonna happen and that’s okay, i’ve done it before. But it’s the importance of checking back in and being willing to be present for our kids that makes all the difference.
0:35:06 – Speaker 1
Well, you know. And another cool thing, kim, too. I like how you summarize that, how if she’s faced with something, because you know her so well And I really loved how you put that sometimes you can see her better than I can. I loved how you said you know She will. She’ll know either to seek Jesus or me, or she’ll know right or wrong in the moment, and I really do believe that her discernment is so good.
0:35:30 – Speaker 2
Yes, her discernment is so good I have seen that in action and she has such a good heart and just a great kid. I do want to get to a couple of the questions that we got through social media When we said we were doing this show. One of them came from Michael. He says how detrimental is Helicopter parenting and how important is it to let your kids fly.
0:35:51 – Speaker 1
Well, i would not have been equipped to answer this nine years ago, for sure. But I have seen helicopter parents and I will be just honest, most of them are Christian parents and they think they’re protecting their kid, but what’s happening is they’re creating liars because their kid can’t talk to them about things, and so all these things go unchecked and these feelings and their mental health is not in a good state because they’re dealing with all this stuff That they’re trying to process and they, they cannot talk to their kids about it, and it all stems from the helicoptering. You know, just be careful with that. Be be so careful. I know you want to protect them.
You know, an example that my husband and I were just talking about is life 360, right. So we have that app. We use it just for safety purposes, whatever. We are not the kind of parents who are texting our kids every five minutes saying why you here, why are you there, why aren’t you coming home? yet We’re not those parents. We don’t use it for that. If we did, our kids would unfriend us. They would not let us be in the group like 360, right. And so at 18, they get a choice.
This helicoptering question one thing that comes to mind a lot is She’s turned 18, right, she’s moving out every doctor’s appointment We’ve been to this summer to get her ready for college.
She now has to sign a form Telling the doctor that they can talk to me about her medical health. If we did not have trust or if she felt like I was Controlling her or wanting to helicopter and be in her business about every little thing, she wouldn’t sign the form, and we’ve even had discussions about it. Like I, i’ll say to her you know, i would never go behind your back and get your medical records, or it would only be like if you want me to call, or I’ll ask you first if I can call the doctor to get these, this test or whatever. It’s a conversation, because she is a human being. She’s not somebody to be controlled And I think the helicopter and the controlling It just creates this environment where you don’t feel trusted. You feel like you’re constantly being monitored. I mean, think about you having a micromanager as a boss. Don’t be a micromanaging helicopter parent.
0:38:01 – Speaker 2
And quite honestly and I know you’d agree with me, mandy is that’s hard sometimes because we go to that fear place of I just want to protect them, i just want them to have a childhood and we just Start to helicopter. But part of our role is we want them to launch, we want them to fly, we want them to know how to operate in this world when we’re not in the room. And I think helicopter parenting is what you’re saying. It sets up your relationship with your kid, that you don’t get to speak into those things, those parts of their personality and decision making and And their ability to protect their own heart and mind when they leave. If we smother them by being a helicopter parent So they kind of work hand in hand, being able to launch them successfully Means we have to back off a little bit at the same time and also pour in without being a helicopter parent. So it’s not easy, not easy at all.
Okay, we have time for one more question. Katie Said how do I deal with the preteen eye rolling, all the attitude that starts to come up when they are Getting to that age? We are right there too, katie. What would your best advice be?
0:39:13 – Speaker 1
Okay. So how I handled it was this When I roll or attitude would come out, i would take a deep breath, avoid crazy parent mode And I would often say to my kids It’s a good thing, i love jesus, because james 119 says quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry. So I’m not going to respond back to that right now, but all I want to ask you is this Would you talk to your teacher like that That set a precedence in our house Where they realized, okay, i’m calling them out on their craziness, like you can’t just treat people like this. You sound like an entitled moral brat. Don’t say those words. Those are those words, right. So you call out the behavior, but you do it in a loving way.
That, jesus, you know you’re thinking about jesus at the well With the lady who committed adultery. He’s loving, but he calls it out and says this is not okay, and so that’s the kind of parent you have to be. You have to be jesus to your kids and honestly, i think This is such a great question because it sets the tone for the next. If you’ve got a 13 year old, it sets the tone for the next five years of how you’re going to communicate in your home. So it’s a big one and if you don’t get control of it, i’ve seen Relationships ruined over it and all communication shut down. So this is a big one and I’m glad she asked it. It’s important for how you’re going to handle that.
0:40:52 – Speaker 2
Yeah, that’s so good, mandy. I love how you share that with your kids. It’s such such a great precedent. I just want to add on to that too. Something that has helped in our house as we’ve navigated the eye rolling is sharing that verse, like you said, mandy, but also sometimes I am in a funk, or my kids are, or that’s just the world, and so sometimes I think when I turn around and I say, would you like to try that again? when I get the eye roll or their sarcastic comment, and almost every time, yes, i’m sorry, that didn’t come out right and it’s just that pause in that kind of like, let me help you check yourself without you know, berating you or getting you in trouble or anything like that, and reminding them like, okay, let’s try this again. So many times they’ve responded so well and and realized, okay, that that’s really not how I want to talk to mom, so that’s been really helpful too.
0:41:54 – Speaker 1
Well, and I think that’s important too you’re gonna have to have a lot of conversations about how human Mandy responds and how about Holy Spirit Mandy responds. So those two things are extremely important. And and give examples to your kids about what this looks like. So when I’m getting beat up on social media and people are telling me to step in front of a train, or just atrocious things that people say on social media sometime right, and that’s actually happened to me Step in front of a train, kiss a train lady, i can’t believe you have a book that is. I mean, this is how Satan rears its ugly head right. Broken people, just hurting broken people, just hurting others anyway.
So I will use that as an example and I will say human Mandy, right now, wants to literally respond to this and probably put up the middle finger, if I’m being honest, like that’s what I want to do right now.
But is that what Jesus wants me to do? so let me think about this for a minute and not respond in the moment, and that way I can really think about how to best represent Jesus to this person who doesn’t know me from Adam, who’s telling me they want me to die. Right, how it does Holy Spirit Mandy need to respond to that and modeling that for your kids and giving practical examples when you and your husband are maybe combating? and then you say you know what human Mandy’s not gonna respond right now because it’s not gonna be nice. The more they see you do that, the more they will model that, and so it’s a constant and it’s. You know, it’s not a sin to have that knee jerk feeling of wanting to say something, but it is a sin to do it. So you have to, like again, take those thoughts captive in your mind. It’s not okay for me to respond that way such great advice.
0:43:37 – Speaker 2
I love that, mandy. Well, thank you for sitting down with me and spending time being an open book, as usual, but just kind of all in one place being able to ask you these questions that other people have shared with me about you and then I know they’ve wanted to know the answers to. I mean, it really really does boil down so much to Jesus open communication, doing the hard work, not checking out and looking in the mirror right. So I thank you so much for reminding us of the importance of all of that, and we’re just so proud, so proud of your daughter and the young, amazing woman that she is and that she’s ready to fly, because you’ve done all this great, great parenting. And let me just also say I love that you shared that sometimes you made mistakes, because I think people need to hear that too. So, anyway, great job today. Thanks for being on our show learn from my failures.
0:44:33 – Speaker 1
People learn from my failures.
Transcribed by https://podium.page