Getting Real With Tammy Bartholomew

It’s amazing how one conversation over instant messaging makes you realize how much you could help someone else by sharing. As the dust started to settle since my divorce in 2009, and yes it does take years to settle, it’s amazing the change and transition my teenagers and I have went through. We, as mothers have to go through so many changes sometimes we forget so do our kids and do we slow down to try an understand?

Often, I don’t think we do. It takes our kids acting out, going into depressions, having anxiety attacked, failing in school, throwing fits for us to wake up and see we are not the only ones affected. They say kids are resilient and will bounce back like a rubber band but holy crap watch out when then rubber band breaks! While we are dealing with our mental disaster trying to maintain a life we once had they are too.

When I was applying for jobs, I was encouraged to read a book called Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change by William Bridges. You can find it at your local library or on Amazon for around $15 for the hard copy. It gives a lot of examples about adults changing, the workplace and how we change and deal with transition. As I read on, I realized my kids were stuck in this transition as I was. It said change is situational which we can all deal daily, but transition is psychological. Ding, ding, ding…was that my kids and I? Change is easy for us, we move, we go do new schools, we meet new people, but the transition is all in our heads. We are comfortable with the past, get stuck in LaLa Land and afraid of the future. Our goal is how do we go forward?

Trying different ingredients, because we know not all kids are the same, here are a couple solutions I tried with my teenagers: Counseling is definitely needed through the process. I went for two years, why would I not put my kids in it? They need someone to talk to just like I did. And, no I don’t care if your sons say they don’t need it; in time they will. You don’t want them to be your age carrying around all this unprocessed information. Girls play it out in emotion and drama. My daughter has been an roller coaster for a while like since 4th grade. She is a 7th grader now. Love her to death but we have dealt with so much drama I have declared it as really over-exaggeration now. She has gone several time and now she is empowered herself and tells me when she needs to go to counseling. Also, I am not a doctor but meds might be necessary. Your kid may not think so but for your sanity, you might want to consider it. Take notes of what and how they are feeling because when you take them to the doctor they clam up and look like angels, even when they are hurting so badly inside. There are some natural remedies also that work. It definitely made a different as my son hated school and went from A’s and B’s to D’s and F’s. Exercise is a great, a bike ride, game of tennis,  or an evening walk with the dogs. We have three, Mikey, our Chiweenie, Bear, the Pomeranian and Brownie Girl, my rat terrier. See when the mental is good, it is all good!

Keep Smiling! Tammy