Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Parenting multiple ages

Me [today; frustrated and overwhelmed, to my husband on the phone--ok, I was in tears]: I am continually going from trying to have a conversation with a teenager (sounds easier than it is) to changing a dirty diaper...
Him: I'd rather change the dirty diaper.

Me too. Anyone relate?


Janel said...

{hugs} Some days are like this.

My three youngest are older than yours, so I haven't had much of that. I have to go from beginning reading to Algebra and THAT makes me want to cry!

This too shall pass, allllll too quickly! (As I was painfully reminded today...)

Brenda said...

I'm not there yet...but I often think that where I've been was easier than where I'm going.

Thanks for letting me know that parents of 12 or 13 or more years can still cry on the phone to their husbands! :)

Anonymous said...

I'm delurking to say a resounding YES!
I was just expressing these exact sentiments to my husband about an hour ago!
I feel pulled much of the time...someone always getting the short end of the stick (usually the oldest).
How do I divide myself better or how do I live with the fact that I can't?
My three are 9,5 and 3.
Thank you for making me feel less alone tonight!

Terry said...

I relate: more than you know. Well, you DO know don't you? Stay encouraged, Andrea.

Kim said...

Stay on course even when you want to jump in the nearby lake. Teens, God Bless them, are really something for a mother's heart. {{ hugs }}

Tammy said...

Without leaving you a comment that would babble on, and on - let me say that our oldest is soon to be 19 and youngest that just turned 7. They are all precious and great children. For me, however, sometimes the shifting of gears (and quickly)all day - everyday, wears me out. I am assured that these are days to be treasured and so, I try. Praying blessings for you today!

Anonymous said...

You are not alone! I have a 17, 16, 13, 6 and 3. It can make you feel a whole different kind of bi-polar!!!! I remember 13 years ago thinking that "YES! By the time I'm 40, my kids will be nearly grown!!!! And I can par-tay!" Yeah, right. Even with my tubes tied, God has continued to bless us. We adopted our 3 year old after fostering her from birth. And now we have a 6 year old foster son who will be with us for ???.

I am NOT complaining! And I know you aren't either - just know that you are not alone and there are plenty of us out there going through all the pain, suffering, joy and blessing.

And may I say that I'm glad God blessed me boys first?!?!?!? And the girls are 10 years apart. Makes me rest a little easier as I think of weddings . . . .

P.S. He loves you... said...

OK, many of you have me scared!
Very scared of teen years and not just any but my soon to be own!

Here's something that I was thinking recently as teen leader ministries I have to be able to comunicate with them to get their trust. So I "play it cool" and ask advice or what they think? I usually work it so that they are answering their own questions instead of me telling them, afterwards they feel "empowered".

I will also let them know how much I appreciate them and ask for help, never been turned down.
IMOHO~ I would "partner up" with our teen to conquer all that Satan has to throw at us, as it says two are better then one! Pray together through everything...talk and ask questions so that they are feeling invited to the conversation and that their thoughts matter, otherwise they have one half their body and mind out the door..as they know their time is short till adulthood. This why the attitude in most, yuck!

And never never never I repeat never give them anything in exchange for their respect, that is short lived and it only means that you would rather not deal with them...true story!
They need to earn everything, even their place at the table!

AIMEE said...

i feel the pain...not the teenage pain, but having a 10, 8 and then 5 and 2...I feel like am mothering two totally different stages of life and it just plain ol' gets me good and tired :) I have found that it is really good for me to take out the older two to run errands with me and leave the littles with Dad. Then other times, leave the big kids with Dad and I take the little ones to the park. It helps for us to divide and conquer :)

Beck said...

Babies are SO much easier!
But the good things about teenagers is that they can CHANGE THE POOPY DIAPERS.

The Arnold Family said...

What are the ages of your children?

Abby... the Oregonian said...

yes, yes, yes... mine are 9, 7 and 20 months... all boys... i did not expect the amount of emotional parenting it takes to raise the older boys and then the physical parenting it takes to raise the baby. everyday i feel spent emotionally and physically. the only thing that gets me thru some days are remembering that these years truly go by so fast. it will be over soon, that hands on, physical part of parenting a baby/toddler. and now especially during the summer when they are all home i am only doing things with my "extra" time that are life giving to me. sewing, reading, running, being with life giving friends. otherwise i will get eaten up by "giving" to my children all day and then giving to others with the other, small part of my day. figure out what is life giving to you and try to incorporate that into your day somewhere. good luck. abby

SimpleMommy said...

De lurking to say "Oh Yes!"

17, 13, 4, and 20 mos

yup. I know whatcha mean. :)

Andrea said...

Don't be *scared* of teen years...it's just a whole 'nother ball game!!!
Very much to invest emotionally and mentally.
Lots of "hard talks".
And after caring for a 2 year old all day, that's the *last* thing I want to be is "cerebral". LOL. Thanks for the encouragment, ladies. Now...off to find "life-giving" activities for me... thanks, abby!!

Susan L said...

My four were each about 18 months apart, so they grew up as a single entity! :-) But parenting is *never* without it's challenges. Mine were just different.

I thought what your husband said was funny, and you obviously have a great sense of humor about it, too, which is the whole key. If you don't know what to do, just laugh. It keeps the kids scared and on guard. :-) (just kidding)


Islandsparrow said...


much rather...

That little one whose diaper you're changing? His or her teen talks will be much easier.

I have 5 ages 17-27. You get better at it - and the rewards are sweet.

P.S. He loves you... said...

Well I would like you know more about your ABC's so TAGG your it, come over and find out what for?!

Have a great weekend!

Andrea said...

Island sparrow?
i'm doing a happy dance!!!
THere best be SOME payoff for all my hard work!!!
Thanks so much for commenting. You are someone to glean wisdom from in this area!!

Andrea said...

Whoever asked...
my kids are 14, 7, 5. 2.5

ay yi yah.

Beach said...

I am delurking thanks to a link from P.S. He Loves You.....to say YES I sure can relate too. My girls' are ages 15, 9, 6, and 17 months.

kj said...

it's encouraging to read the
comments that the others have
my eyes are still a little red
from crying (exhaustion, frustration,
and even redemption) earlier
tonight, as well.

sleep tight,
kari jo

Monica said...

I am so there. One preteen girl who needs some mom time to talk through her tears and a one year old boy who is throwing things against the wall and laughing. God give me grace.

ivegot5 said...

Mom to 15, 13, 3, 2, and 2 (twins). I hear ya, honey. It's like trying to live in two different worlds. One constantly needs to be somewhere just when another needs to sleep. Or they want to talk about some deep subject during dinner and bathtime for the little ones. Honestly, some days, I'm literally running in circles. I do know it's going by too quickly. I feel like the older ones are getting the short end of the stick. I do my best. I try to just show them all I love them, though I don't do that very well sometimes when I'm tired. Hopefully, some of it is getting through. This is reallly hard.

Thinking of you tonight.


tonia said...


no words of wisdom for you, but lots of sympathy. it's not a job for the faint of heart.

be strong and courageous, dear one!

Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

My children were twelve years apart.

My son started kindergarten the same day my daughter started college. :)

Today, he is eighteen and she is thirty which is still strange but they've finally developed a real relationship.

Oh, this was not a second marriage. I call it "God's sense of humor".

Anonymous said...

Sweet Andrea..

I hear you.

I have a son,14 and three girls 10,7,and 4.

I am praising God for Sally Clarkson's perspective and encouragement. I love how she points us in the direction of our own Heavenly Father.