All You Need Is (To Learn How to) Love

All You Need Is (To Learn How to) Love

Written by Jori Meyer, Posted on , in Section Inspirational

I am a great example of how your relationship with your parents can affect your adult relationships more than you think. Growing up, my mother and I were always head to head. Screaming matches, demands for respect, grounding, the works. We had every single communication problem under the sun. She didn't hear me and in return, I didn't hear her. So how did this affect me as I went out on my own and tried to build relationships with other adults? Too many ways. I'll break it down for you as I've come to figure it out on my own journey of parenthood.

I know you've heard this before, but your kids will always be watching you.

Creepy, right? But really, you are the biggest influence on your child's life. In every way, shape and form, you get to mold this little person into who will be taking your place in the masses. Every person that you encounter while with your kids will be an example to them as to how to communicate with people outside the family. You are constantly showing them what is acceptable, socially and intimately.

How to be a friend - From running into someone unexpectedly at the grocery store to gathering friends for a get together, or stopping by with soup when they are sick. All of these things, as little as they may be, are being stored away into your daughter's mind and have the potential of becoming part of the friendship that she brings to the table with her future and current peers.

How to interact with yourself - When you speak about yourself in conversation, is it positive or negative? How do you react to a compliment? Do you even respond to insults? All the while, your little note taker is trying to get a grasp on this grown person they will be and the way you treat yourself is the foundation they take their first step off of when they leap into self discovery. Think about it, the way you view yourself could influence how your own kid views himself.

How to be a partner - When a teenager or young adult is experimenting with romantic relationships for the first time, what other pairing of two people is always on display in their life? Their parents. How you speak to each other, what you do when the other fails or when you fail, what you do when success is earned or presents itself, the ways you show affection, the tone of your voice with your spouse, the amount of "lovey-dovey" you show, all of these things are creating your child's view of how relationships work. They are literally nitpicking apart your entire marriage, looking for the things they will bring to their adult relationships.

I could go on for days about your impact on their future parenting skills, employee and employer skills, even what kind of pet owner they become. Learning to communicate on a social and intimate level is something you want to instill in your children at a young age. If you won't teach them, they will poorly learn from someone else or through trial and error. The relationship you have with yourself, your parents, your friends, your spouse, coworkers, and anybody else, will decide how your child views personal relationships. Most importantly, you need to have a good relationship with your kid.

Do you know how amazing it would have been to be able to communicate with my mom as a teen like I do now as an adult? I truly believe it would could have been life changing. I probably wouldn't have gotten into half the shenanigans I did. The bond you form with your child can be the most influential thing in their young life. How you act together as a family through the struggles of the teen years will be the base of your lifetime relationship. It's a hard time time in life, especially your teen and their blossoming social lives. Try to be their support system and attempt to be the example you wouldn't mind your child becoming.

So, take a look at your relationships. You have the power to weed out negative interactions and the people who get you down. You are under no obligation to keep anyone around who doesn't deserve it. If you can't do it for yourself, do it for your wee followers. Give them healthy relationships to learn from and the skills to have a positive experience interacting with every single person around them.