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I Want My Kids To Want To Be Around Me – Remembering My WHY

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In a recent binge of season 4 of the TV show Fargo, I witnessed a series of scenes that perfectly illustrated one of my deep motivations for change. The show exposed an old custom among opposing gang families: trading a son from each family as a pledge of loyalty. Initially, this practice was met with silence from the boys, a given duty not to be questioned. But, as generations passed, the young sons grew increasingly vocal about their unwillingness to be pawns in their fathers’ games. My interpretation of the boys’ evolving courage was due to the fact that, with that passage of time, children have been exposed to more and more information. With the invention of television, young eyes were able to see other ways to respond to the world. Ways that weren’t taught to them by their parents, extended families, friends, or neighbors. 

Today, given the immeasurable amount of online and social media content our youth are exposed to, we are raising the most independent minded generation to ever exist. Our kids are being taught to question, challenge, and make choices based on beliefs and feelings that come from all over the world, in all shapes and sizes. And that freedom to question is precisely what motivated me to make changes in how I was approaching not only my parenting, but also my life.

I remember in high school observing that, as an across the board rule, people seemed to be drawn to happy people. And, years later, as I discussed in my first ever podcast (which I’ll link in the show notes), I realized that if I continued down my path of rage, criticism, and judgment, my unhappiness could very easily push my children away from wanting to spend time with me as they grew older and wiser. While I might have installed just enough guilt in them to make them feel obligated to visit occasionally, I wanted more than that. I wanted my adult children to want to be around me. But how do I accomplish that? 

I think about the people who I want to be around. I wrote about this in 2021, and I’ll put a link to that short post below. Personally, I gravitate towards people who make me feel loved and accepted just the way I am. People who challenge, but don’t question me. People who laugh with me, not at me. People who don’t expect me to be perfect and are happy with what I’m able to give. So, if that’s what feels good to me, that’s the person I want to be for my kids.

Learning to become that person has taken work, self-reflection, and help from people who know more than I do. But as the children get older, I can see that the time I invested into becoming the kind of person I needed in my life, was well worth it


If there’s someone in your life who you think would benefit from hearing this post, it helps me out a ton when you share my posts with friends and family members. Next week, I’m going to share some very important lessons I learned about being in, and vacationing with, our big old DePetris family. Be sure to tune in, and as always, thanks for listening! 

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  1. This speaks to me on a number of levels, Mags. Working on ourselves is not a walk in the park but if we want to walk alongside our kiddos (or be there when they want to join us on a lap,) it’s a necessity. Thanks for sharing.

  2. AMEN! I want my children to want to come home too.
    Thanks Mags.

Welcome to my blog! Here you can read about what’s on my mind as I try my best to recover from screaming at my kids and nagging the bejesus out my husband.

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I would love for you to join me as I work to undo these old patterns and evolve to create a more serene and accepting existence. (And you should know that I still want to ear flick the little knuckleheads {this includes my husband} when they don’t rinse a dish before putting it in the dishwasher — always a work in progress.)
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