i absolutely adore our two kids. both are so much fun, and both have really beautiful hearts, are caring, and seem to love god. but that doesn’t make parenting easy, and jeannie and i are both really struggling right now.
liesl is a wonderful creative. put her in a dance class, or in choir, or in the art studio, or performing a play, and she is ‘in the zone’. but her creativity has a common ‘other side’ — completely lack of discipline. this shows up most in doing her homework (or even turning it in), which is a massive all-hands-on-deck family effort every single night. we’ve tried natural consequences, rewards, punishments, encouragment, systems, and forty other approaches. but her homework results in tension between her and us (or at least one of us) almost every night — certainly multiple times each week. cleaning up her room and other regular jobs fall into the same kind of struggle. we’re close to our wit’s end, and have considered whether we should pull her out of school for the rest of this year and home-school her — which would kill us, and, we’re worried, seriously deflate the bright spark she has in her.
max, on the other hand, does mostly fine in school, but really struggles socially (liesl has pretty much zero struggles socially). i’m convinced he’s going to do great in life, once he gets comfortable with who he is and finds his niche. he’s not very athletically-inclined, but there’s so much pressure for every kid to be in sports — so max tries at baseball. but i don’t think he’s having fun. and we don’t have any boys around us his age, so he plays by himself most of the time (which he actually likes much of the time). we want to help him, but not try to change him.
these have been weighing really heavy on my heart, and on jeannie’s, for a while now. but they seem to have heightened in the last 6 months. i don’t see any simple (or even difficult) solutions.