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Ask Coach Jen K. Your Own Question

Coach Jen K.
Coach Jen K., LMSW, CPC
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 1715
Experience:  Licensed Master Social Worker. Certified Coach Mom of Twins.
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Dear parenting counselor - I am a divorced mom of two sons,

Customer Question

Dear parenting counselor - I am a divorced mom of two sons, recent college graduates. My older son has been living far away, and just accepted a new job back here in our hometown area. My younger son graduated this past May and has a job in a neighboring state about aXXXXXfrom home. I recently accepted a new job in another nearby state, and will be moving to a new home about aXXXXXfrom the town where we have lived for the past 20 years. My younger son is extremely upset with me, and claims he will not be able to return home for weekends and holidays to see his friends and the area where he grew up. I have tried all types of rational explanations and reasoning with him, told him of course I have a room for him in the new house and it isn't that far away, but he is refusing to speak to me and is very, very mad, telling me I am being selfish and stupid. I understand his feelings, but feel that I have done nothing wrong and that he is the one who is being selfish and unkind to me. His father is fueling his anger, also agreeing that I am a terrible mother and completely selfish. What can I do to help my son feel better about this situation, and I would like your opinion on whether I have actually done anything wrong. thank you. Mom on the Move.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 1 year ago.

CoachJenK :

Hi. Welcome. I am a Licensed Master Social Worker with more than 20 years experience working with individuals and families. I am also a mom of Twins.

CoachJenK :

Hi Mom on the move. I am in support of what you are doing. You have done a wonderful job raising and parenting these two fine young men.


 

CoachJenK :

they are not babies, but rather college graduates.


 

CoachJenK :

Yes he is allowed to have his feelings of loss around your move, but not acceptable to be giving you labels for doing so.


 

CoachJenK :

In this economy getting a job that you desire is not selfish at all but rather quite smart and efficient.


 

CoachJenK :

I believe eventually he will come to terms with it and i would continue to discuss it with him and let him express his feelings but also setting the boundary of what is acceptable in terms of how he speaks to you.


 

CoachJenK :

I am sorry your ex fuels the fire too...doesn't help anyone and only hurts your son.


 

CoachJenK :

He can still visit his hometown and his friends and stay with them...so yes things will be different, but that doesnt mean he cant maintain contact.


 

CoachJenK :

tell me some of your thoughts.


 

Customer:

I feel mostly terrible that my son is in this emotional distress just when he is starting a new job and new life, and I feel guilty that I didn't wait until he was more settled into his career. On the other hand, I am excited about my new move and wish I could have that happiness shared by him, but this job opportunity presented itself and it is exactly what I have wanted and where I have wanted to live.

Customer:

Also, my son is very volatile, but lately we have been getting along so well and have become closer than ever, and I am distraught that we are having this terrible issue now...

CoachJenK :

yes and both things are true for you and that is what makes you a warm and loving mom. Keep talking to him about it and acknowledge all of his feelings about it and i do think in time he can heal and actually see that what you are doing is a fine example as a parent.


 

CoachJenK :

and that volatility is being called up now and it is clear when he has some deep feelings this is how he han


dles them.

CoachJenK :

as when he was a young child keep providing the cal, loving and consistent reassurance.


 

CoachJenK :

*calm


 

Customer:

I completely understand the difference between feelings and behaviors, but sometimes I am unsure of where to draw the line between letting him express himself and insisting that he speak respectfully XXXXX XXXXX

CoachJenK :

you just said it perfectly...he can tell you how he feels but you can set a boundary on HOW he says those things and labels and such are where you draw the line.


 

CoachJenK :

"Mom, I am so sad about this move. I will miss being here so much. While I may not agree, I understand."


 

CoachJenK :

rather than "I cant believe you are doing this, you are so selfish and now I cant have visits with my friends or come to my hometown. You have destroyed everything."


 

Customer:

I think he doesn't hear me when I try to reason with him and ask him to express himself in a kinder way

CoachJenK :

time to go back to an earlier time as you did when he was young and having a tantrum.....dont engage when he speaks with disrespect. no big explanation other than We can talk about this when you can speak with me with more kindness, if not I will not engage with you on this.


 

Customer:

yes, I know that's right, but it's hard when it's all on the phone a hundred miles away...i don't want to hang up on him when he talks like that, but maybe I should...

CoachJenK :

well you dont have to hang up on him...you can give him the warning and if he continues you can say..."


.I am now going to say goodbye as this isn't productive. I will be happy to speak with you when you are feeling more calm."

CoachJenK :

you have put in your time and it is truly okay that you get to do what is good for you now. It does not say anywhere in the good mother handbook that when your children are college graduates that you cant do something for yourself.


 

CoachJenK :

feel happy and proud of yourself for your accomplishment....you will never please everyone.


 

Customer:

ok, thank you coach Jen

CoachJenK :

it is my pleasure!


 

CoachJenK :

you can come to me anytime for support by putting my name ot the beginning of a new question.


 

CoachJenK :

How can i support you further now?


 

Customer:

I guess I'll sign off now and see what happens over the next few days... I may write back... thanks for your help

CoachJenK :

anytime you need i am here. Please take a moment to click on the rating tab to offer a rating of my work.


 

CoachJenK :

my goal is EXCELLENT


 

Coach Jen K., LMSW, CPC
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 1715
Experience: Licensed Master Social Worker. Certified Coach Mom of Twins.
Coach Jen K. and other Parenting Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


CoachJenK - I guess just talking to you did the trick - believe it or not, my son just called and said "Even though I don't agree with you, if this is what you really want then I'll be happy for you." We had a wonderful conversation, and he is still sad, but he said he will be supportive of my decision. Thanks again, Jen.

Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 1 year ago.
So so so happy to hear that. I am sure you are feeling very relieved. His coming around and being able to say all of that to you is a testament to you being a great Mom. Way to go.
Keep me posted. All great things are happening. Put that great energy out there and it all comes back. I am here anytime you need.

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