Have you ever had a conversation with your daughter that just did a full 180 from what you expected?
Inevitably, after our daughters have come up with the most out-of-pocket question they could have possibly thought of, we say..... Where did you even hear that from?
If you’re anything like me, I know sometimes you wish you could just filter her entire life. You know…protect her at all costs no matter what it requires of you.
Fight off bullies? Check.
Make sure she never learns a single cuss word? Check.
Go to war to ensure she gets an invite to all the birthday parties? Double check.
Protect -vs- Control
Naturally, we moms want to protect our children from the "outside elements" of this world; what they see, do and talk about when they're not with us. Unfortunately, this normal desire to protect can turn into unhealthy control if we're not careful. There is a thin line between loving protection and overbearing control with several underlying factors that contribute toward our decision making. Our daughters’ maturity level, if she's proven to be responsible or not based on past experiences, and many other things can affect how we choose to protect and control our children, but considering these things first before we choose to act can be extremely helpful in the long run
Anchor in Values
Aside from drawing the line between protecting and controlling, I believe there is one specific way we can protect our daughters at all times, no matter what they're exposed to. In order to do this, we can establish a foundation of values that will anchor them when they begin to experience new behaviors or new ideals and concepts for the first time. Values are our internal compass that keep us on course and when we get off course, our values will help us course-correct. This is no different for our daughters.
Values in Action
What are your moral and/or spiritual values? If you asked your daughter right now what she believed her family values are, would she effortlessly be able to share them back to you? I know this may seem like a daunting task, but the more you express your values and repeat them, the more they will become anchored into who your daughter is as a child, and later, who your child will become as an adult. As your daughter matures, she will adopt her own values, but the core values that you taught will always remain etched in her heart.
Happy anchoring Mama.
With Love, Antonia