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Letting Go of Disappointment

Letting Go of Disappointment

I’m super disappointed in one of my kids right now. They made a choice that I don’t agree with and I let them know that pretty clearly.

And I’m sitting here, stewing, trying to figure out why I’m so upset.

First, I think this choice reflects on their character, and I’m afraid what that means. Do they really think that what they did was okay? Did they feel no tug in their spirit? No remorse? Even after I showed disapproval? And if that’s the case, has nothing I’ve taught them sunk in?

But I think the part that I might be more upset about is this. What if other people saw them do this? How will this poor decision reflect on my parenting? Will people think that I told them it was okay to do this? Will they talk about me? Will they judge me?

My kids are fifteen and almost seventeen. Every day I am having to let them make more and more of their choices. Yes, I can still do course corrections with them, and nudge them along, but what they choose to do is now, pretty much, up to them.

There is only so much control I have over them. I can tell them electronics off and in the kitchen at 9pm and I can install monitoring software on their laptops, but I can’t be with them when they’re at their friends’ houses. I can tell them not to text when they drive, but I’m not always in the car with them. I can teach them about the effects of drinking, but – again – I’m not always with them. I can’t always be with them.

So I have to let go.

I have to first let go and trust that I have done a pretty good job of laying a strong foundation for my children.

Then I have to let go of what other people think of my parenting. I need to only be concerned about how God thinks I’m doing.

And I have to – to quote recovery-speak – let go and let God. I must trust that Someone bigger is holding onto my children, guarding their coming and going, instructing them, guiding them.

We can only do so much, and then there’s free will and there’s God, and they’re going to be okay. And even if something horrible happens, God will still be there holding them, and holding us.

Elisabeth K. Corcoran, 2013

Elisabeth is mom to Sara (16-1/2) and Jack (15). She loves spending time with her kids, her friends, reading and writing. She is the author of At the Corner of Broken & Love; One Girl, Third World; He Is Just That Into You; In Search of Calm: Renewal for a Mother’s Heart; and Calm in My Chaos: Encouragement for a Mom’s Weary Soul. All these books can be purchased on Her upcoming book, Unraveling, releases with Abingdon Press this month.

Visit her website and her blog.

If you are in a difficult marriage or find yourself going through a difficult divorce, I have created two private groups on Facebook that I would like to invite you to. Simply email me at for more information.

Elisabeth is a proud Member of Redbud Writer's Guild.

Publication date: October 10, 2013