This site is a resource for parents who wish to successfully launch their young adult.
There are opportunities to learn from experts such as Dr. Stoltzfus, who will share his research and experience in working with young adults and parents. But equally important is to learn from the “voice” of experience that you, as parents, have about what works and what doesn’t. So this site represents a work in progress, a learning experiment, and a community of concerned parents who want to do the best they can to help launch their young adults.
Once our children reach the young-adult stage, we have less control and influence. So we have to think less about how we can control and “fix” our young adult and more about how we can demonstrate the parenting behavior that supports our young adult’s emotional and behavioral independence.
Strengthening by Using the Six Practices
When strengthened by you, the six practices illustrated in the left circle at the right can support your young adult’s independence, your continued connection with them, and your ability to sleep at night, knowing you did the best you could as a parent.
Both parents and young adults suffer if independence is attained through hostility, anger, or resentment. The six practices can facilitate the process of launching your young adult and helping you let go in a loving way. Doing so will allow your young adult to be both independent from and connected to you. You may not need to focus on all of these practices, but it is likely that strengthening one or more of these can make a big difference in your letting-go process.
- Understanding — nonjudgmental listening and transparency
- Unconditional Love — affirming your young-adult’s existence
- Apology — the gift you give your young adult
- Forgiveness —the gift you give yourself
- Supportive Integrity — saying “no” in love
- Letting Go in Love — saying goodbye, while staying connected
The Key Tasks of Young Adults
The young adult also plays a role in this developmental stage. Here are some practices they can strengthen to support healthy letting go.
- Understanding and developing empathy for the parents
- Apologizing for actions that have been destructive to the relationship- a gift to the parents
- Forgiving parents for the past and present and forgiving self
- Love – reaching out to parents and staying connected
- Responsible independence – financial, physical, and emotional
- Letting go of needs, expectations, and actions that keep the young adult dependent on the parents
Qualities of a Healthy Parent and “Successfully Launched” Young Adult Relationship
- MUTUAL UNDERSTANDING
- OPENNESS AND HONESTY
Connect with Parents Letting Go
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