The lonely child
Your children don't only belong to you, they have a mission. You're on a borrowed time with them. Your own mission as parents, should you choose to accept it, is to build a better human being; not to build a mini version of you and all your deflated hopes and dreams. Help them become the best THEM not the best YOU.
Once your children become adults, the relationship becomes a choice and it takes work to maintain. You cannot treat your adult offspring like children. If you view your children only as your property, you will face dire consequences.
Parents need to demonstrate respect for their children and not for power and control. Parents must win their children’s respect, not try to demand or force it. Coercing respect might bring compliance but it doesn’t build true respect for each other. Parents too often fall into the category of those demanding for respect, forcing their children to comply with threats, punishment, shaming, bribes, and rewards. This has however never yielded a positive outcome. We’ve unwittingly taught kids to respect the power and control of authority, losing sight of the more important goal of respecting relationships and respecting each other as individuals. Respect is won by giving it and earned by acknowledgement of innate worth and equality. Children are equals, not in skill or knowledge, but in human dignity and we should treat them as such.
As adults, we are not the gatekeepers of our children’s destiny, however they are vessels that God has entrusted in our hands. We will have to give an account for any harm and all harm caused.
I have realised that it is so important that a child is mentored into their independence, autonomy, and intuition. They are equally endowed by God as adults are. They too should be honoured and respected as full spiritual beings. They know their own truth, we must teach them to trust it.