If you’re raising “that kid,” hang in there

Growing up, Palmer was “that kid” in so many ways:

He was “that kid” that cried almost every day at kindergarten when being drop-off for three months.

The kid who was indeed in constant motion was Palmer.

He was also the kid who lied.

The one who threw the game board if he lost.

He’s the one who hated homework and piano practice.

The one who got suspended to school.

He was also why I recognized the middle school dean’s phone number when he called.

The messy one.

The late one.

The procrastinator.

The provoker.

The defiant one whose glare could be unsettling.

He was the one who got mediocre grades.

He’s the one who could push my buttons with laser-like precision.

I was that parent who judged those for having that kind of kid until I became the one who had “that kid.”

For all the mamas out there raising “that kid,” I want you to know: it’s worth all the extra work.

For the ones who are raising easier, more compliant kids, I urge you not to judge “that kid.”

Palmer was also “that kid” who:

Found 1000 ways to make us laugh.

Single-handedly could calm down a family dispute.

Easily can befriend and connect with just about anyone.

Could light up a room with his smile.

Who made everything fun.

The little kids adored him.

We are now celebrating Palmer for being “that kid” who just graduated as summa cum laude from DePaul University.

He has a heart of service to others and is applying to graduate school to be a therapist.

This kid that made me want to pull my hair out is now the grown-up kid who makes my heart sing.

Sometimes the most challenging kids to raise turn out to be incredible adults.

If you’re raising “that kid,” hang in there. Don’t give up. They’re worth it.

I hope you’ll share with me. Are you raising “that kid?” What’s the most challenging part? What’s the best part? What kind of support would make it easier?


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Kerry Stutzman MSW, LMFT

My passion is helping my clients develop close, connected families and healthy relationships. For the past 20 years I have been helping people discover the best version of themselves.  Learn more

Brett King LPCC NCC, MFT

My specialty is couples therapy with parents. I also have expertise in parenting, betrayal recovery, and addiction.  Learn more

Amy Cobb - Parent Coach

Amy Cobb MS Family/Human Development

I specialize in working with parents and caregivers with children from cradle to college, with special focus from birth – 10 years old. Learn more

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