Listening Builds Connection
Mom Builds Bridges of Understanding With Her Teen Daughter
Recently I started working privately with a mom who was struggling with getting into frequent arguments with her teenage daughter. The closeness they used to share was evaporating. She arrived to her second session very upset and feeling hopeless that the situation would ever improve.
I worked with the mom on teaching her how to respond to her daughter’s emotional outbursts with more connecting responses rather than reacting defensively. Her current responses were escalating the verbal fights and she felt horrible afterwards.
I sent her home after our second session with empathetic statements to practice which she did with her husband’s help. She was learning that by changing herself with more positive communication skills, she would bring out a better side of her daughter.
Here is the email I received from the mom only one day after she worked on her new skills.
I wanted to let you know that I feel so much better today. I had to drive my daughter this morning to get her car and things were much better. She talked about her music which is what she used to do when we were together and she shared some other stories. I think she may have felt bad about what happened yesterday even though she didn’t say it.
I spoke to her therapist and she said that yesterday they actually worked on emotions so that was really good. The best is I sent my daughter a text later this morning and told her how happy I was that we could get along on our drive and that I was really trying to work on communication because I cared so much. She didn’t reply but it made me feel better. She has been texting me during the day to check in. Just wanted you to know how things were going.
Thanks for your support.
The mom and I continue to work together as I teach her how to stay sane during the teen years and remain close. I have confidence that the break throughs will continue and the barriers her daughter has put up will dissolve. Mother and daughter will create a relationship based on mutual respect, trust and love. I am honored to be a part of this amazing family transformation.
An amazing mom of a teen girl.