Tag Archives: parents

42. Spending time with your parents now is a gift you may not have later.


I understand when you’re in your 20s this may be easier said then done. For many of us, our natural instincts arethumbnail to pull away from our parents and push toward independence. But there needs to be a balance. Some people never resolve parental issues and their parents die and that’s that. Only they’re left with all the things they didn’t say. And then there are those who lose their parents when they’re all too young. I had a friend who was only 24 when she lost her mother to cancer. She grieves this loss every day. Fortunately, both of my parents are still alive, and we are close. But it wasn’t easy to get here. Living nearby helps – although some would argue it’s better to be far away. Whatever your situation or age, it’s important to get to know your parents and help them get to know you. While they can be your biggest judges and critics, they can also be your hugest supporters. Because they’ve been around longer, they also typically know more than you do about most things (even though they may make you want to scream sometimes). But don’t just take my word for it, here’s an excerpt from The Learning Network (http://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/01/how-close-are-you-to-your-parents/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0) in the New York Times: “Our research shows that the closer bonds between young adults and their parents should be celebrated, and do not necessarily compromise the independence of the next generation. Twenty-five years ago, young people sought advice and help from naïve peers. Today’s young adults may be savvier than their predecessors; they receive advice and help from middle-aged adults with greater life experience and material resources to offer.” And now I’m going to contradict everything I just said. On the other hand, every one has a time in their lives where they bond strongly with their parents and also a time when they don’t. For better or worse, this has been my experience. But it doesn’t have to be yours. Can you think of ways you can spend more time with your parents today?

Word to the wise: If you think your parents are going to be around forever, think again. Make the most of the relationship you have or improve the one you don’t. You’ll be amazed at how much better life gets when you do.

What’s your relationship with your parents like? How can you improve it? Note: If I’m lucky enough to get a book deal, your comments may be published anonymously in the upcoming book, “Wise Before 25, 50 Things Young Women Need to Know.”


18. Be grateful for everything you have and don’t worry so much about what you don’t.


I woke up this morning feeling a little blue, thinking and worrying about the things I don’t have. Like a husband. Or a house on ????????????????????????????????????????the beach. And more money in my savings account. There are some other things on the list, but you get the idea. I remember one of my roommates always used to say, “Focus on what you have, not on what you don’t.” Sometimes, that’s hard to do. So, I try to think about my life and the things I have, like: a loving family, supportive friends, a beautiful cat, a condo I own, freedom, independence, this blog, a fun car, the beach (10 minutes away), and most important, my health. I’m sure if I think on it a little harder and a little longer, there’s lots of other great stuff in my life, too. And even if I don’t have everything I want (right now), I realize I have more than most.

Word to the wise: Don’t let what you want get in the way of what you have. There are many gifts in your life. As you can see from my list, most of them have nothing to do with money. Although it never hurts to have some. Make a point of recognizing and being grateful for your gifts. And if you’re really bummed, just listen to “Don’t Worry, Be Happy,” by Bobby McFerrin. If that doesn’t make you feel better, I don’t know what will.

What do you do when you get the blues? Note: If I’m lucky enough to get a book deal, your comments may be published anonymously in the upcoming book, “Wise Before 25, 50 Things Young Women Should Know.”

9. Don’t listen to your parents.


As wise and wonderful as my parents have been, they haven’t always been right about everything. Like Woody Allen says, h“Everything our parents said was good is bad. Sun, milk, red meat, college…” Remember the 90/10 rule? (see post #7, “Listen to your parents”) – 90 percent of the time they’re right. And then, there’s that other 10 percent. As painful as it was to defy their wishes, sometimes I’m glad I did. Like when I bought my first place. It’s not that my parents didn’t want me to be a homeowner, they just didn’t think I was ready for the financial burden or responsibility. But I knew I was. It’s funny, today my dad says buying my condo was one of the best decisions I ever made. My dad also wasn’t too happy about my choice to become an advertising copywriter. At the time, there were very few jobs and as he put it, landing one would be like trying to break into show business. Well, I stuck with it anyway and as a result, I have had and continue to have a successful copywriting career. But when I ask myself why my parents didn’t support these decisions I know it was only because they were trying to protect me. Which is what your parents will always try to do.

Word to the wise: Sometimes, only you know what’s right for you. But it doesn’t hurt to ask advice from your parents. Because while you may think you know what’s right, they always want what’s best. If you want to start a dialogue with your parents but don’t know how, check this out:


What do you think? Note: Your comments may be published anonymously in the upcoming book, “Wise Before 25, 50 Things Young Women Should Know.”

8. Listen to your parents.


Over the course of my life, I’ve done the math and it turns out my parents are right about 90 percent of the time.

That’s a pretty good statistic seeing as they’re probably the only two people in the world who want what’s best for me. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve found that blood truly is thicker than water.  While I’m fortunate enough to be blessed with many great friends, sometimes, understandably so, they’re caught up in their own stuff and may not always give the best advice. On the other hand, my parents are always caught up in my stuff, because they’re my parents (this can be a blessing and a curse). So let’s see, what have my parents been right about so far?

  1. Telling me to never ever date anyone named Steve again.
  2. Cheering me on to break up with every Steve (and there have been at least five).
  3. Not saving me by paying off my credit card debt, but helping me by paying off my student loans.
  4. Pushing me to get my college degree.
  5. Asking me to always lock my doors and windows.
  6. Making me wear a sweater when it’s cold. (Now this one is questionable because recent studies show that being out in the cold doesn’t mean you’ll catch cold. But my dad won’t have any of it).
  7. Being happier to see me single than miserable in the wrong relationship.

Those are just a few examples of a lifetime’s worth of my parents’ wisdom. I’m sure you can find a few of your own. 

Word to the wise: Most of the time, it pays to listen to your parents. You may not agree with everything they say, but you should know that’s it’s coming from the best possible place – their hearts. And no one loves you like they do. So the next time they offer you advice, at the very least, think about it.

What do you think? Note: Your comments may be published anonymously in the upcoming book, “Wise Before 25, 50 Things Young Women Should Know.”