Sunday, June 24, 2018
Parenting & Relationships

Tell Me About It: Don't be resentful when parenting changes

Q: I'm the eldest of four children, my family's "guinea pig." Despite that, I have done very well, my parents were very supportive and I have generally loved being an eldest sister.

However, Brother is now 13 and applying to high schools. He and my parents feel an all-boys school is better than my high school, and although they say they are proud of me, I can't help but feel slighted. It also seems like my parents are putting more time into my brother than they did into me. They keep track of his homework, help him study for the standardized test coming up and so on. Dad also decided to teach Brother coding and robotics. I missed out on this, though he intends to teach me over break.

Part of me is really proud to see Brother being so successful, and part of me is jealous that I didn't get this kind of attention. How do I get over these feelings so I don't end up resentful?

Sibling

A: Parents often talk about how each of their kids has different needs. What you don't hear as much is that each kid often gets different parents. People change through experience, happenstance and just general erosion. You can't get mad at your parents for learning to be better parents.

You, as the oldest, got your novice parents' full attention as a baby while the youngest probably did some hard playpen time. That's just how big families make it all work. Then, as the older kids are successively catapulted out of the house, the youngest remains to soak up the full attention of now-veteran parents.

I can't tell you how to feel, but I can speak for myself: I try to save my jealousy and resentment for responses to the deliberate behavior of others, instead of wasting it on accidents of fate or timing.

(Then, of course, I try not to feel jealous or resentful at all because that just takes bad circumstances and adds bad feelings to them.)

So, take advantage of the coding and robotics lessons you're about to get instead of cursing the fact that you're getting them late.

Comments

Tell Me About It: Dad despairs at state of gender relations

Q: Day after day, we have new news of a famous man who has done unspeakably stupid and offensive things to women ... for decades. Society is, somewhat belatedly, starting to take these accusations seriously.But change is needed at the opposite end of...
Published: 06/22/18

Tell Me About It: Future in-laws are insisting on an open bar

Q: My fiance and I are getting married in my familyís hometown and my parents are hosting (and paying for) the wedding. My family are minimal drinkers. My fianceís large extended family is accustomed to weddings with full open bars.My parentsí initia...
Published: 06/21/18
Plan your weekend: St. Pete Pride, Hall and Oates, Pixies, Logic, comics Jay Pharoah and Bobby Bones

Plan your weekend: St. Pete Pride, Hall and Oates, Pixies, Logic, comics Jay Pharoah and Bobby Bones

Rainbow connection Pride weekend: One of the largest Pride celebration in the Southeast happens this weekend in St. Petersburg, bringing a rainbow of activities. Things set off on Friday with the free SP2 Concert at North Straub Park, hosted by Coc...
Published: 06/20/18
Updated: 06/21/18
Big concerts this weekend: Luke Bryan, Hall and Oates, Weezer, Logic and more

Big concerts this weekend: Luke Bryan, Hall and Oates, Weezer, Logic and more

HIS KIND OF NIGHT: Luke BryanItís been three long years since Tampa has seen the well-groomed hide of Luke Bryan, the Hollywoodiest hunk in Nashville. But heís about to make up for lost time. On Saturday heíll headline his biggest-ever show here, a b...
Published: 06/20/18
Top things to do this week: Go Skateboarding Day, Hollywood medium Tyler Henry

Top things to do this week: Go Skateboarding Day, Hollywood medium Tyler Henry

Tyler Henry: Hollywood MediumTyler Henry, the so-called Hollywood Medium who stars in an eponymous E! hit show, is coming to town with a live show called "Life Lessons I Have Learned From the Departed." The soft-spoken 22-year-old has done readings f...
Published: 06/20/18
5 things to do under $5: USF Summer Plant Festival, Bridal Show, free show by AnastasiaMax

5 things to do under $5: USF Summer Plant Festival, Bridal Show, free show by AnastasiaMax

1 Summer Plant Festival: If you think you canít get anything to thrive in Floridaís brutal summers, check out the vendors with fruit trees and advice on how to grow them, along with hundreds of blooming butterfly plants, herbs and tropical and exotic...
Published: 06/20/18

Tell Me About It: Wife punished after being victimized

Q: At a work happy hour, a male co-worker groped me. He later "apologized" with the qualification that I had been sending him mixed signals.Iím married, he has met my husband, Iíve never led him on. And when it happened I was incredibly clear that it...
Published: 06/20/18
Your guide to St. Pete Pride: What's changed for 2018

Your guide to St. Pete Pride: What's changed for 2018

Pride weekend kicks off in St. Petersburg Friday with a free concert hosted by a RuPaul’s Drag Race star, a parade along the downtown waterfront on Saturday and an expanded expo of vendors and art on Sunday in the Grand Central District that ga...
Published: 06/19/18

Tell Me About It: Mom/daughter dynamic feels controlling

Q: I am afraid I may be a controlling mom of my young adult daughter, but we have a dynamic in which she seeks me out often, solicits my advice, and makes me too important in her life. I admit to offering that advice because it is hard for me to draw...
Published: 06/19/18

Tell Me About It: Regretting staying too long in bad romance

Q: I recently broke up with someone after two years. Even though there were things that bothered me while we were together, I would convince myself I was overreacting, he didnít really mean it, etc.Now that itís over, I feel like a fool for not havin...
Published: 06/18/18