I never thought I’d find myself quoting Lady Gaga, but I like this (edited for decency) saying: “Trust is like a mirror: You can fix it if it’s broken, but you can still see the crack in that reflection.” I know what she means. Once our child loses our trust, it’s VERY hard to get it back. In a real way, the person I thought my son or daughter was, is no more. My image of my happy family has perhaps even been shattered. The betrayal (even when forgiveness has been asked and given) can color our every upcoming interaction with our child. Do I really know her? Is he telling the truth…today? Or lying again? I’ve even wondered (maybe you’ve been there too)…will this cloud ever lift?
Our children will let us down. They will deeply disappoint us. They are our greatest joy, and the cause of our greatest pain. But their future is not written yet. They need us to believe they can change…and to give them the hope that they can and will be restored in their relationship with us. But they have a job to do too…and it’s to work hard at regaining our trust. I found a great article that answers a teen’s question “I Lost My Parent’s Trust. How Can I Get it Back?” If your teen is frustrated because things aren’t “back to normal,” this can help them understand what they need to do…and why it takes time. Talking over the article could help the healing, and set the family on the path back to trusting them again.