Wednesday, September 9, 2015

When Parents Can't Fix It

As a parent you can't fix everything.

And sometimes it hurts.

To see your kids suffering, so see them hurting, all you want to do is take away that pain.

And sometimes you don't even know what you should fix.  

Lucas is in GATE (Gifted and Talented Education).  Last night I attended a meeting about GATE and some of the extra enrichment activities they offer for the GATE kids, including Odyssey of the Mind. Before the meeting I asked Lucas if he would want to join any of the teams.  'Sure, maybe' he said.

I came home from the meeting with information about the teams and asked Lucas which he would like to do.  

"8- minute presentation" he read on the form.  "Does that mean I have to present in front of others."
"Not just you, your whole team would." I explained.

"I don't want to do it."

This began a frustrating 30 minute conversation with Lucas.  A conversation where Eric and I tried to figure out what was going on in his mind, what was causing this anxiety.

If you knew Lucas when we lived in Arizona, this would just seem par for course; but we have worked with him so much, we have taught him coping skills and he has changed.

That little boy who would freeze up at birthday parties crying in the corner, that little boy who would be overwhelmed by too much noise, too much stimuli, those days all seemed mostly behind us.  Now when he gives talks in Primary, he does it with a confidence that seems to rival every kid, leaving every adult amazed at his speaking ability and amazing talks he prepared.

This is the true Lucas, this is the boy I know he can be, those little moments when he is showing his full potential. 
So as he sat there, tears running down his face, never telling us what was in his mind, my heart broke a little more.  What had happened?  Had someone teased him at school, was someone still teasing him.

I had been bullied at times as a child and I never told my mother.  I don't know why I didn't tell, I knew she loved me and was always there for me, but for some reason my 2nd grade self kept it all in. And now he is a 5th grader, so much older, the teasing could be so much worse.  

A week before, I had happened to tell Lucas about my experience and told him I never told my mother, he asked why.  I said I don't know.

"She probably couldn't have done anything about it" he said.
"Maybe not, but maybe she could have and even if she had not she at least would have been there for me and it would help knowing I wasn't going through it all alone."
He agreed that I should have told.

So last night as we sat there, trying to figure out what was going on, I hoped and prayed there wasn't something more he wasn't telling me.  

I hate that I can't fix it.

Linking With Shell's PYHO


  1. Aw. I understand. I'd feel the same way. I want to take all the pain away from my kids. I hope he's okay!

  2. You said he's better and you've worked with him. .. any specific resources you used or specific things you did? Specifically for being overwhelmed by noise or anxiety? Thanks! Ps Hope you can figure this situation out!

  3. I'm so sorry! It's hard when kids won't speak up. Chris has a 12-year-old son that just won't talk to him about anything. Chris is a totally open book and is a really good dad, but for some reason, his son just won't go to him about anything at all. Chris is constantly telling him, "I can't fix it if I don't know what's broken." It's sad and frustrating. And then I'm totally at a loss because I certainly can't do anything about it either.

  4. I hate the things we can't fix for our kids. I hope he tells you what's going on.

    I never told my parents when I was bullied in 8th grade. I guess I figured they couldn't do anything or that they might go in and talk to someone about it and it would get worse, I'm not sure.

  5. I know the feeling -- it hurts when we are not able to fix things for our kids or when they do not let us know what is going on in their head. I hope that he tells you what is going on soon! I was bullied in grade school, but I was the type of kid that took care of it myself even if I wound up getting in trouble.

  6. Shoot Em, so sorry. I hope he's okay. M has been struggling a lot lately too, she doesn't feel like she's good at anything. It's been hard for me to know what to do too.

  7. I agree. It is the worst when we can't fix their pain. And so much more upsetting when we don't understand what is causing it. I'm thinking of you both.

  8. There is nothing worse than when we can't make everything all right for our kids. Hopefully you'll know how to help soon, or at least what is wrong.

  9. Oh, this made my heart ache. It is so difficult at times to parent our growing children. You just want to make everything perfect for them, but sometimes you can't. I hope you get to the bottom of it! XOXO

  10. all I can feel is sadness. Sadness for him, sadness for you. What really can a person do in times like this. Wouldn't it be nice if there was a clear cut and dry answer!