When Parents Stress Out Children

A silver lining for teens in troubled homes

It is common for children, particularly toddlers and teens, to stress out parents, but no one gives a voice to the children who are stressed out by parents—parents of substance abuse, illiteracy, unstable or low-paying employment and problematic relationships.

Children, today, who are born into a life of stress, sense something is wrong often before they start school. Parents, who are stress-makers, believe toddlers are unaware of their behaviors, however, children are keenly aware of parents’ behaviors because they depend on parents for everything. A child who is raised by a troubled parent, or parents, experiences physical and emotional anguish of hunger, filth, neglect, and even abuse and abandonment. As a child grows, the effect of a stressed parent can be evident through poor nourishment and health, slow learning, sleeping disorders and extreme behaviors (withdrawn personalities, for some, and rebellion, for others). One unstable parent can disrupt the entire family and children learn to emotionally brace for embarrassing episodes and on-going helplessness, on a daily basis.

As stressed children become teens, they get a sense that they are missing the fundamentals to succeed in the real world. They know their families, for whatever reason, do not have information needed to prosper. As children of stressed parents struggle throughout their young lives to keep their family secret from peers and others, they typically shy away from or rebel against people that could be instrumental in their success. So, if no adult (teacher, guidance counselor, relative, neighbor, church official or neighborhood business person) recognizes a need to help and step in to show the pathway to success, these young people grow up believing they cannot achieve success, at least not by the world’s standards.

The good news for young people is that their endurance during early hardships often gives them character strengths for the real world, that others do not have. When a young person couples their experiences and strengths with book knowledge, particularly attaining a diploma, they have fundamentals for success. Many young people develop character strengths during hard times that others lack, such as overcoming stress with humor, maintaining a cheerful or calm manner during difficult situations, problem-solving to lessen stressed occasions, or utilizing energy and anxiety to help others. Learning to turn hardships into strength is an asset for success, particularly when combined with a good education.

Reducing stress typically starts with someone in a family gaining concrete information to prosper, being that poverty (lack of prosperity) is a primary reason many parents and families are stressed. Whether you are a teen who has grown up with nurturing parents or with stressed parents, to assure you are equipped with steps necessary for success, “How to Hear God to Prosper” gives a thorough outline of the authentic message to prosper.

For more info, read “How to Hear God to Prosper” by VC Edwards.
© VC Edwards 2009
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