Alice asked to talk with me today. She mentioned how hard it is seeing her boyfriend Jack as they don’t get much time together and then someone’s always around.
After listening to her I decided to take on board something Phil said to me when we were together. He’d said that I have to allow the kids to step away from me a little bit. At the time I argued with him that he was wrong, that I did allow them space but listening to Alice I realised I could let her have more. At 16, Alice has proved herself to me over and over that she is mature, trustworthy and responsible and so I agreed that from now on when Jack comes over they are allowed in her room. As I said it I could feel a physical sensation of a ball in my chest, right near my heart. It felt as though it were trying to burst out. I can only imagine this was my heart opening.
I explained to Alice how my parents had never given me any boundaries regarding boys, how they’d actually more or less given me the green light to do what I wanted with boys from the age of 13 and that was why I was so strict with her regarding boys but I could see that it was time to allow her the space to start learning for herself, even to start making mistakes but really to find her own feet in the world. Letting Jack upstairs is the first step in that and it’s as much a learning curve for me as it is for Alice.
I know they’re going to have sex although I also know they most likely will at some point but I feel that at 16, Alice’s old enough to be making those decisions for herself now and I need to accept that I’ve given her firm, strong roots and now it’s time to allow her wings to start growing and start letting her go a little bit. I promised her that if she ever needs me, now or when she’s an adult, I am here for her unconditionally, as I am for the other three but now is the time to start letting go and allow her to learn for herself.