The Day My Prince Lost A Little of His Charm

My 13-year old son, the one that was oh so thoughtful during my “time of the month” in September totally hurt my feelings today. And it’s been exactly one month since then so you can guess that I was quite hormonal and emotionally over reactive about it. I knew it was bound to happen and all of you who wanted to slap me because I bragged on my boys pampering me the day I had cramps can now laugh. And the rest of you with toddlers who are still snuggly and sweet can feel sorry for me because you can’t imagine your child ever dumping you for his friends. I will take your sympathy and you can still be my friends.

Today is the day my prince lost some of his charm! He completely blew me off and real tears actually dripped down my cheeks. Of course, I didn’t let anyone see them. It was just between me and God, and now you.

First of all, I know it’s not even normal for a mom to go eat lunch with her 13-year-old. But he’s been saying his friends’ moms bring them lunch and eat with them. He kept asking me all week if I was coming today. I was feeling all cool like he wanted his friends to meet me or something.

I got there and it was all good. He talked to me a little. I made small talk with some of his friends I’d never met. Twenty minutes later the lunch bell rang, he stood up and started walking away. “Are you just going to leave?” I asked. “Yea, I gotta go back to class.” he replied as he turned and walked to the trash cans with his friends. No good-bye, no thanks, no nothin! Then I thought, He’ll wait for me at the door.

But oh no, he didn’t. I couldn’t find him. I looked toward the bathrooms, against the walls. Then I looked waaay down the hall and there he was walking and talking. Not looking back. Not even aware that I was waiting for a glance, a wave, a good-bye. I just watched and wondered.

How could my sweet son be so rude? He didn’t even thank me for bringing him his favorite food to school and he didn’t even say good-bye. Doesn’t he know I went out of my way to take a shower, find an outfit, put on make-up, drive to Chick-fil-A and then come find him in a sea of middle-school faces? I could’ve stayed home in my sweats all day, not even taken a shower and gotten work done! Well, see if I bring him any chicken nuggets again!

At first, it almost ruined my day. I didn’t want to do anything when I got home, but feel sad and take a nap. I know it’s mostly hormones but when they hit you it feels so real and hurtful! Thank goodness for the Holy Spirit who nudged me to process my feelings and the facts with God.

My feelings told me that I was not
that important to my son anymore.

My feelings told me that I’d been rejected.

My feelings told me that he’s already moved on
even though he’s got 6 more years at home.

My feelings told me that I had been used
by someone I love.

So I had to ask, what are the facts to overpower these feelings? The facts are:

Despite his behavior today,
he is a thoughtful kid (most of the time).

Despite how much it hurts,
this is typical teenage behavior.

Despite how rude it was,
he was not rejecting me.

Despite how shocked I was,
one incident doesn’t define a person or a relationship.

Despite how much I didn’t want to tell him,
I needed to pray for the opportunity to talk with him about what happened.

And then I asked God to remind me of what is true.

God reminded me of
time Joshua and I had spent together this week while JJ and Andrew were out of town

God reminded me how
Joshua had run with me one evening this week when all he really wanted to do was stay home eat dinner and rest.

God reminded me how
considerate and giving Joshua was this week when a friend’s daughter that I am mentoring/tutoring needed some extra time and help.

By the time I had processed all of this, my hurt feelings were healing. I had forgiven him and I was able to live in the truth of God’s love and the truth of Joshua’s love – and pull from all the deposits we have in our relationship so that this one big withdraw wouldn’t knock me into “insufficient funds.”

Now I just need to take what I learned today and apply it in all my relationships when my hormones, emotions and other people threaten to steal my charm!

About Renee

Renee Swope is a Word-lover, story-teller, heart-encourager and grace-needer. She's also a wife, mom, friend, daughter and author of A Confident Heart, a Retailers Choice Award winning book that became a best-seller and has been published in six languages, with over 150,000 copies sold. Renee is speaks around the country at women's events and and serves on the writing team for DaySpring’s inCourage blog. For twenty years, Renee served in leadership at Proverbs 31 Ministries and as former co-host of the ministry's radio program, “Everyday Life with Lysa & Renee.

Comments

  1. Oh my sweet friend! I wanted to cry for you! I know how you feel. We raise them to be independent and then cry when they are. There are many more moments to come sorry to say, but you are an awesome mom and you have awesome kids they will always come back for a hug. Promise.
    Hugs,
    Margaret

  2. I am right there with you, girl.
    I hurt my own feelings over a Chick-Fil-A incident earlier this week. 🙂

    Praying for you.

  3. Renee, my heart hurts for you, but I want to remind you of some other things about Joshua that I found so amazing and encouraging in this post:
    1. He WANTED his mother to come to his school and have lunch with him – WOW that's HUGE!!!
    2. He actually let you sit with him and his friends to eat that lunch – HUGE!
    3. He even talked to you in his friends presence – HUGE!!
    My sweet friend, although the end of lunch was a disappointment – maybe he was just focused on getting back to class on time – these other 3 things above speak volumes to me of how much he loves you.

    My son is 16 and my husband and I drove him out of town the other night so he could watch his "friend girl" in a basketball tournament. When the game was over he wanted us to leave so he could talk to her without his parents hanging around. Inside I was thinking, 'we just drove over an hour to bring you here, now you want us to go?' Teenage years are hard. My relationship with my son is changing. I find I have to be cautious too – try to give him more 'space'. I've actually sat down and talked to him about what he feels is acceptable or not etc..

    He's a great guy and the line of communication is still so open, and for that I praise and thank the Lord. I think they find these years hard too – navigating uncharted waters – wanting to fit in with their friends and do the 'cool' thing, while still really longing to hug their mommies good-bye. Some days I still get those hugs – regardless who is watching – and you will too!

    Your "Prince" is still charming – you'll see,
    Love & prayers,
    Joy

  4. awcamp@bellsouth.net says:

    Thanks for sharing this difficult moment. My heart ached as I read your words and it was washed cleaned by your sweet time with Jesus. Thanks for taking us through the downs and ups. Blessings.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Yeah…I am hearing you sister! My youngest son is 12 1/2 and I have struggled with similar situations. It is hard to let go…doggone it! But your longsuffering love will win out in the end! I know that is true. My firstborn son (now 22) and I had some really rough years through those teen-times…but because I stuck it out with him, we still relate. He still likes to hang out with me sometimes. ( at least until he finds the right “girl”…:^)…which is another step in the process of letting go). It can be so painful to love so much and to let go…but I thank God we have been given a chance to get to know and love these young men (the sons He trusted into our care) of God! 2Tim1:12b “because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day.” (This is out of context yet still applies to the character of God.)

  6. Hi Rene,
    I’m so glad to come across this particular topic of raging hormones. I was going thru similar feelings of being rejected etc. I was wondering if there was something wrong with me to be over reacting to things. I’m so glad that I am not alone!

    But God surely taught me many a lessons during this time. He gave me insight that I normally wouldn’t have had. He also taught me, that no matter who rejects me, I’m always His and He was rejected so that I would be accepted. Thank you Jesus.

    I also want to assure you all the seeds that you have planted in your son and so carefully nutured will not be in vain. You will be so proud of him one day. He sounds like a great kid already to me. Your hurt feelings must be the hormones, which I totally identify with. I’m soo glad you shared it with your readers, coz it did open my eyes too, to a lot of things. God bless you and your son.

    Maria

  7. Ahhhh…the pull of letting go. Friend, I have some tears in my eyes now as I well remember the feelings you’re having. I still have them from time to time with my oldest who is now in his 2nd year of college. His senior year nearly wounded me for life!

    That being said, all will balance out in the end. Prince Charming will return in unexpected and wonderful ways…like the day my son set up a “facebook” account for me (as if I needed one more addiciton) and then “invited” me to be his friend!

    Do you know what that means? He’s given me permission to “look” at his “wall” on the internet and to participate in his life in a strange, yet wonderful way.

    These are growth pains. They stink and they hurt, but they heal. You are raising some Godly men who have begun to cut those strings. It’s the way of “letting go.” There’s no way around it, but then again, there shouldn’t be.

    Love this post. It has stirred up so many wonderfully, poignant thoughts in my heart.

    peace~elaine

  8. Renee’

    Welcome to the world of “Testosterone Poisoning”.
    Trust me, it will get worse before it gets better; but IT WILL GET BETTER!!!!
    Although they would never admit it at this stage in their lives our sons still need and want their moms to be present in their lives.
    Hang on sweet sistah, your sons will “return” to you and they will rise up and call you blessed.

  9. This is a hard stage of parenting and hormones don’t make it any easier. I love the way you processed your feelings and it gives me a pattern to follow in the future when I’m hurt by my husband, children, friends, or whomever.

    One thing to keep in mind in your situation is that he wanted you to come to eat lunch with him.

    I’ve found that my kids often act one way, all lovey dovey to me, when it’s just us at home, but sometimes it’s different when they are around their friends. It’s a stage.

  10. My prince is got his charm back! We had a great talk last night and he said he was sorry. I’d already forgive him but it opened up the door for a great conversation.

    Thanks for all your sympathy and great insights. You are right – he’s a great guy. Parenting teens is hard no matter what. But letting go is part of him growing up and it’s not going to get any easier.

    Part of the reason it was so hurtful is because Joshua and I had spent Monday and Tuesday evening together while JJ and Andrew were gone. We’d gone shopping for running shoes and out to dinner at my favorite restuarant – The Cajun Yard Dog. We’d shared crawfish etoufee, gumbo, shrimp and grits and fried okra. A bonding experience in itself! We’d gone running together. We shopped for and he had purchased his first “real” skateboard. We’d watched a movie together and then… he forgot me in the lunchroom.

    It was just a hard way to end such a special few days. I want him to know my love is not conditional so I surprised him today with a McDonald’s kids meal but I didn’t stay. It was mainly an excuse to stop by and tell him that he could go trick-or-treating with some friends and his dad didn’t have to tag along like we had originally said. He was so happy and a few friends even stopped by my car to say hello. I am cool after all!

  11. Oh Renee I feel your pain! But first of all, if my son even suggested I come and eat lunch with him I’d have a heart attack! What? Eat lunch with the school quarterback? Are you kidding me? Ahhhh yes, indeed, it would be a joke. At 13 our sons are growing up and still wanting bedtime hugs and kisses…but don’t tell their friends! LOL! Love you and Miss you! Shari

  12. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so very much for being so candid! This is a few months after you wrote about your Prince Charming, but my heart was warmed and blessed as I read your heart’s battle over your young Prince. Be thankful that you do have a Prince because there are those like me who don’t!
    Tears came to my eyes as I read the other dear ladies’ comments also. Such great people you have cheering and encouraging you!
    Please keep up the wonderful ministry that the Lord has given you in your honest and open way.
    May God continue to bless you, your wonderful family and ministry!

    Another “J”

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