Why Can't They Just Do Things My Way?

by: Janeen Diamond, BA

Is it my imagination or are we living in a world gone mad?

Several of my friends have been suffering and worrying about the attitudes and choices of their grown children. It seems we’re back to that ‘anything goes’ mentality, and a lot of people are paying the price.

I must admit, I have found myself in a funk recently over some of the choices members of my own family have been making. It’s been an interesting time in my life -- one where I have had to not only suck it up, but actually toss aside some of the ideas I have held my entire life and see things differently.

I have a fairly strong personality, but I also have a very level head. And I believe I understand this thing we call “life” and the ability we each have to find success and joy.When my children were growing up, I held the idea that if I told them to do something -- they would do it. If I told them to stop doing something -- they would stop.It worked (or at least I thought it did) for a very long time. What I didn’t plan on was that time in everyone’s life when they decide they want to do things their own way, and nobody -- not even mom -- is going to have anything to say about it. I think it’s called rebellion!

After being forced to accept some decisions that I personally disagree with, I have come to the conclusion that letting people -- even our own children -- suffer the consequences of their own actions, is really the only viable option for fostering healthy relationships. I have come to realize I have no control over anyone’s life but my own. And even though I’ve always known that deep down, I decided to put it in writing here to solidify it in my own brain.

So here are some of the things I’ve learned, and I hope you will take them to heart:

  • I have control over my own life -- and no one else's.
  • I have the ability to teach but not to force.
  • If I want to counsel my children, I need to set hurt aside and be level headed.
  • If they don’t want to accept my counsel, I have to be okay with that.
  • When we leave this earth, we take with us our knowledge and our relationships -- they are worth saving.
  • Everyone desires acceptance, and showing pure, unconditional love is the best way to offer it.
  • I don’t have to agree with or accept certain behaviors -- I just need to be kind to everyone.

Over the past couple of years, I have learned that if I can follow these guidelines, (not always easy or even possible)...

     I have a better chance of being at peace.

     I have a greater capacity for love.

     I have less turmoil within myself, because I am only working to control me.

Easier said than done? Yes, it seems we all have to go through heartache and turmoil before we reach the place where we can accept people for who they are. But once we can do it, I believe our lives will take a turn, and we will be better examples to the very people who are hurting us. Maybe in the long run our efforts will pay off. I choose to hold on to that idea.

Janeen Diamond left KUTV News in 2001 after the birth of her daughter, Gabby. Since that time, she has been actively producing commercials and special programming through her company, “Your TV Spot.” She has hosted several television and internet productions, and has been a spokesperson for several products and companies. Janeen has authored her first book, “Save Your Marriage in 30,” and hopes to help families have greater success and live happier lives. She is a leader over the youth in her church and takes a special interest in helping kids stay on track with their lives. She is also currently co-creating “Teen Impact TV,” a website for high school students to give them a creative and emotional outlet. Janeen is a contributing expert at http://www.hopeafterdivorce.org,HopeAfterDivorce.org,http://www.familyshare.com, FamilyShare.com,http://www.cupidspulse.com, CupidsPulse.com,http://www.lafamily.com,LAFamily.com.