Tag Archive for: Listening with intent

Dare 21 – The Respect Dare – Another Request?!? For Parents of 20-Somethings

Standing in the laundry room after a few days out of town, Anita was amazed at the piles of laundry that still needed washed, dried, folded, and put away. “This will take me hours!” she voiced to no one who could hear. Having just moved the second load into the washer, she was wistfully looking out the window at the beautiful day when she heard the phone ring in the other room. “Maybe I should pretend that I’m not back yet and go out and sit on the deck with a book,” she laughed to herself hoping to have a quiet day to relax and play catchup from the fun extended weekend with her husband.

Looking at caller ID she recognized the number. Her 23-year old daughter was calling to probably check to see if she was back. Picking up the phone she responded with a cheery “Hi, Kari. How was your weekend?”

“It was just okay. Nothing exciting.”

“What did you do?”

Kari just shared minor snippets. Anita had the impression all Kari really did was work through the weekend. Then the true reason for the call became clear. “Mom, I’m standing here with mountains of dirty laundry and I won’t have enough money this week to go to the Laundromat. I’m off today. I thought maybe I’d swing by and throw a couple of loads in your machine if that is okay.”

“Kari, I’m sorry. I’m doing laundry right now and I’m sure it will take me to the end of the day. Maybe you can do it another day this week?”

“Mom, this is my only day off work this week. I really need some clean underwear.”

“Maybe you could try to wash a few pairs out in your sink and hang them to dry? That should get you through the week.”

“I guess I could do that. I was just hoping to get all my laundry done today.”

“Hmm, that’s too bad. I’m really sorry I didn’t know sooner. I could have potentially postponed a few of my loads. Now I’m in full swing for the day.”

“By the way, any special reason why you are so short on cash this week?”

“Mom, I wasn’t really going to tell you, but Mitch and I decided to go camping on Saturday. It was my first Saturday off in over a month. We ended up in a big fight because he didn’t have enough gas to get us back home. I got stuck with having to fill up his tank which means I don’t have enough money to get through the week.”

“Have you asked him to pay you back?”

“We’re not speaking at the moment.”

“Did you work out the financial arrangements before you left on the campout?”

“I thought we had. Obviously, I was wrong.”

“I’m sorry it didn’t work out how you would have liked. Maybe you will find a way to talk to him this week and work things out.”

Kari chatted a little more bemoaning the woes of her relationship with Mitch. Mom listened intently, offering emotional support that she knew her daughter needed at the moment. As the conversation started waning, she quietly offered to let her mom go back to her laundry.

“Hope you can get enough of your underwear washed by hand to get you through the week,” Mom chuckled. “Let me know if you want to come over another day before work this week and throw in a load or two.”

Ecclesiastes 3:1-5

To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:

A time to be born,
And a time to die;
A time to plant,
And a time to pluck what is planted;
A time to kill,
And a time to heal;
A time to break down,
And a time to build up;
A time to weep,
And a time to laugh;
A time to mourn,
And a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones,
And a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace,
And a time to refrain from embracing;

 

Sometimes as parents of 20-somethings, we are overtly willing to put what we are doing aside to “rescue” our children from natural consequences. In some instances, it does make sense to bail them out even when we know it will cost us something; time, money, or emotional energy. Other times, they need to learn to make-do with what they have at their disposal and learn to manage their time and resources better without always running to Mom and Dad for last minute bailouts. Either way, don’t forget to fill the emotional tank.:)

Dare you to discern what lessons your 20-something needs to learn on their own while still striving to keep the relationship intact.

“Let go…and let God,”


Hope you will join Nina Roesner as she provides insight on marriage and Leah Heffner as she blogs to wives with little people as we go through The Respect Dare together.