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DR. ANGELO O. SUBIDA, PSYCHOTHERAPIST.
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Antonio is a 47-year old adult child of a rich family. His parents have been providing for him financially from childhood to adulthood, onwards. He was kicked out of college twice, never held a job, and addicted to shabu and alcohol. Multiple times, his parents would bail him out of jail or debts incurred from his vices.
We parents all need to “see” our adult children as “adult” – not a little child or an adolescent. That means allowing our adult children to face responsibility and consequences in their lives. As parents, we need to learn how to replace over-help with precise help – scary or painful it may be – to really help.
This tendency of parents to over-help is just a misperception. It is an old habit, but an important one to change. When you as a parent change your mind-picture of your adult children to their true age, it will be easier to avoid over-helping.
Because it’s a habit, it will take practice through time to change your “mental picture” of your adult child. As you learn to cut strings and set realistic boundaries and consequences with your adult children, you help them grow and move forward in their lives.