Parenting is hard. There is no instruction manual. What works for one child, does not work for another. Everyone, including strangers on the street, wants to tell you what you are doing wrong. Excellent parents have kids who are out of control due to a variety of reasons: mental health, physical disabilities and disorders, drug abuse, gangs, and other criminal activity.
There is nothing more heart wrenching and infuriating than a parent who throws up their hands and turns their back on their child. In parenting, failure is not an option. Your child did not ask to be born. Your child did not choose you as a parent. You, the parent, chose the child. From the day you took that baby home from the hospital, you chose.
Until that child is eighteen years old they are your responsibility to house, feed, educate, and love. No matter how hard the going gets, it’s your job to always say yes to them being your child and to never lose hope that it will change and that things will get better in the future.
Hope begins and ends with the parent.
In my day job, I watch parents (biological and adoptive) walk away from their children. Place the child in the custody of the State and wash their hands of the child. It’s not every day, but even one is too much in my book. I’ve heard every reason: “We’ve tried everything,” “They are ruining our marriage,” “the other children are afraid of them,” “They are destroying our home,” “They are stealing from us,” and “They are physically assaultive.”
I know sometimes kids have to be taken out of a home and go to treatment programs, but their always your child. As a parent, your efforts to visit, love, and care for your child should never cease. The child’s issues may prevent the child from living in your home, but it doesn’t end your responsibility as a mother or a father.
Kids are hard. I understand. I really do. I know, you’ve tried everything, every type of therapy, every medication, every consequence, every parenting class, every assessment, and every treatment program known to man.
Well, try them again.
Never walk away from hope.