Recently my daughter and I were texting back and forth and she texted something that kinda hit nerve and kinda hurt. Basically, she was telling saying she couldn’t talk to me. I was shocked! I thought I was “talking” with her and listening. Apparently not.
Here is what her text said: “Why can’t I talk to you like kids can talk to their parents and they are actually good parents. But, you are a whole different story, yes you do a lot with me but you don’t do enough. If I can’t talk to you, you are not a mom, you failed at being a mom if your own daughter can’t even talk to you. How do you think that makes me feel?”
WOW! How do you think this text made me feel? It was like ice water hitting me in the face, shocking and painful. Have I failed her? Have I failed at being a mom? Nothing in this world means more to me than that.. BEING A MOM.
I took a deep breath before I responded because my defensive mode kicked in and I knew that listing everything that I have done for her and how I have been there for her would be moot. That’s not how she sees it and she won’t get it, why waste arguing via text back and forth. Nothing will be gained.
I guess the things she needs to “talk” to me about she hasn’t been able to for fear I will get upset and not understand. I took this text as an opporunity, an opportunity to get close to my teenage daughter. She is telling me “Mom, I want to be able to talk to you. Please listen and don’t judge me.” Well, I knew if I was going to be the mom she needs me to be for her I would need to listen better and really hear what she’s saying and most importantly, not judge her.
So, I texted her back and told her that I’m sorry she felt she couldn’t talk to me. I thought she could. I told her I would try to listen and not judge but I need the same in return from her. Hey, it’s the first step right? No one said it was going to be easy.
I have said to Olivia that being a mom did not come with instructions so I will make mistakes, big and small ones. We all do. So, I asked her to be patient and cut me some slack. I may not be the best mom, but I am ALWAYS here for you and no one will love you as much as I do.
Will keep you posted on how the “talking” goes.