Navigating Tricky Family Dynamics (with Parents and In-Laws), with Kanesha Baynard
In this episode of the TiLT Parenting Podcast, I sit down with my dear friend and super talented life coach Kanesha Baynard to talk about the relationship we have with our parents and in-laws while also navigating our own journey as parents. Kanesha is an expert in multi-generational family dynamics and in this episode, we cover a lot of ground — the common challenges, tackling uncomfortable conversations, designing an alliance with our parents and in-laws, and much more.
If you’ve ever had a communications fail or conflict or disagreement with your own parent or parent-in-law over some aspect of raising your own child, Kanesha’s perspective and practical strategies will undoubtedly inspire you to foster a dynamic that will best serve the whole family and meet everyone’s needs in a respectful way moving forward.
About Kanesha Baynard
Kanesha Baynard is a workshop facilitator, creativity coach, and inner wellness author who has been featured on the Dr. Oz Show. Her work has also been featured in many local and national publications. Kanesha is the author of The Self-love Playbook for #boldthinkers, 52 Powerful Questions: A Journal and Planning Guide for Creative Entrepreneurs, and Focus on What Matters: A Guided Journal.
Kanesha has over 20 years of experience as an educator, leadership developer, and curriculum designer. She was a secondary teacher for eight years, served as a K-12 professional development administrator and oversaw the teacher certification program at a large university. She holds degrees in Spanish, secondary education, educational leadership, and linguistically diverse education. She is also has a certification in life coaching. Kanesha is based in the Bay Area and works with one-on-one clients, facilitates workshops, hosts enhanced retail experiences, and provides keynote presentations.
She is the founder of the Bold Living Today community focused on helping members disrupt unfulfilling patterns through creativity and navigate transition with confidence and boldness. Kanesha has created several card decks designed to help busy professionals, caregivers, and teens reconnect with activities and behaviors that foster imagination, joy, creativity, and space to refuel. Kanesha works with non-profit organizations, wellness groups, caregiving resource providers, women business owners, leadership teams, youth organizations, and individual clients to improve productivity habits, manage mental wellness through creativity, expand outreach opportunities through focused brainstorming sessions, and provide life skill mapping.
Things you’ll learn from this episode
- How to recognize and understand generational differences between our parents parenting style and our own
- Strategies for handling difficult conversations with our parents
- How to handle it when we feel judged by our parents or in-laws
- How to take care of our needs and our kids needs during difficult moments
- How to ask for what you need from your parents and in-laws in a respectful way
Resources mentioned for navigating tricky family dynamics
- Kanesha Baynard’s website Bold Living Today
- The Self-Love Playbook for #BOLDTHINKERS by Kanesha Baynard
- Focus on What Matters: A Guided Journal by Kanesha Baynard
Kanesha Baynard 00:23
There’s a sense of powerlessness that happens for us as parents, it happens for the kids. And sometimes when the grandparents see us struggling with that, they have a sense of powerlessness. And that’s when they tend to go into this superhero mode, where they’re giving us all these tips telling us everything they read, telling us what they should do in this kind of top down way. And oftentimes the attention is to solve a problem for us when it really just creates more problems.
Debbie Reber 00:50
Welcome to the Tilt Parenting podcast, a podcast featuring interviews and conversations aimed at inspiring, informing and supporting parents raising differently wired kids. I’m your host Debbie Reber and today I’m sharing with you it’s super interesting conversation that quite honestly blew my mind when we recorded the episode, because today we’re talking about parenting from a whole new point of view. Specifically, we’re looking at the relationship we have with our own parents and parents in law while also trying to navigate our own journey as parents. And to help us dive into all of this is Kanesha Baynard, a brilliant coach who among other things, helps families navigate the challenges of intergenerational families. While this can mean families where people from multiple generations are living under the same roof as was the case for connection many years ago. For the purposes of our conversation today, we’re really exploring all the challenges, aspects, nuances and realities that come into play, when we’re busy raising our differently wired kids while also being adult children of our own parents. If you’ve ever had a communications fail, or conflict or disagreement with your own parents over some aspect of raising your own child, I guarantee you’re going to get so much out of this episode. Because kaneesha has an incredible perspective and really practical strategies for how we can create the dynamic we want in relation with our own parents, and most importantly, one that best serves our kids. I want before we go to the episode, I have two quick announcements. First, I’m going to be hosting a live webinar on Wednesday, December 7, where I share my best strategies for surviving the holiday break in a way that feels good for the whole family. This is the first ever tilt live event and I’m really excited to connect with some of the tilt community. The holiday survival webinar is free, but it will be limited to 100 participants. So if you’re not already signed up for the tilt email list, go to tilt parenting calm and sign up. So you’ll get the webinar details emailed to you. And secondly, there will be no new podcast episode next week. Well, I know we have listeners from all over the world. Actually, we have people tuning in from more than 100 different countries. In the US next week is Thanksgiving, and I’m going to take the week spending some time in gratitude with my family. But we have more than 30 episodes already recorded. So if you’ve missed any over the past six months, I encourage you to go to tilt parenting comm slash podcasts and use the time to catch up. As always, thanks for listening to the tilt parenting podcast. To learn more about tilt, visit www dot til parenting.com Hey everyone, Debbie Reber here with the tilt parenting podcast. And today I am super excited to be welcoming to the show. Friend of mine, a bold living mama certified life coach, educator, facilitator, blogger, I’m getting tired saying all these things crafter and many other things, Kanesha Baynard. Welcome to the show.
Kanesha Baynard 03:45
Thank you, Debbie, I’m so excited to be here.
Debbie Reber 03:47
Well, we’ve known each other for a bunch of years now. And I also know that there are so many different things we could talk about today, including how to live a bold life. But I happen to know that one of your areas of expertise is centered around multi generational and in law dynamics. And I thought that could be a really interesting topic for us to tackle today. Because well, because our relationships as parents with our own parents, as well as the parents of our partner can be tricky no matter what the situation. But I think with differently wired kids there can be that added strain or maybe just an extra element for consideration that can really impact all facets of these kinds of relationships.
Kanesha Baynard 04:28
Absolutely. Debbie, a lot of us sometimes forget that. You know, when we have families, we have our specific immediate family but the extended family can be a really super impactful tool if we leverage those relationships properly. So yeah, everything you just said,
Debbie Reber 04:43
I like the way you said a tool to leverage. That’s such a nice way to even frame this conversation. So but before we get into talking about that specifically, would you mind just taking a few minutes and tell us about yourself in your own family dynamic like how many kids you have, how old they are what your Emily makeup looks like and maybe as part of that, how you came to have this special focus of multi generational dynamics in your work.
Kanesha Baynard 05:08
We are currently a family of four. And I say currently, because we’ve had multi generational living situation in the past. And so my husband and I have two children, we have a daughter who’s 17. And she’s a senior in high school. So that’s a big transition going on for us right now. And then we also have a nine year old who is in fourth grade, and He’s our son. So we have two kids, we have an age gap, we have a long marriage, and we are people who really look at family as this broad term that we define on an ongoing basis. So it’s pretty interesting for us. And I mentioned it that way. Because when we were having our second child, and we were figuring out our careers, and how to be good parents and still have a healthy marriage, we decided to go out on a limb and create what we call the nuclear family with the word Ew, being nuclear. And we invited my mother in law to live with us. And a lot of people think, oh, my gosh, Kanesha, you are absolutely crazy and insane. Who would want a situation like that, to have your mother in law with you 100%, critiquing you, in your business all up in the mix of your family? And I’m thinking, Well, yeah, it could be that way. But we are going to craft, create, nurture our multi generational family to be positive, nurturing, and then whatever else comes along. So we were able to do that for about five and a half years until we relocated, and my mother in law decided that California was not the Sunshine State for her.
Debbie Reber 06:37
So, was she up for I mean, I’m curious, but her response was when you invited her to move in and be a part of your family in that way.
Kanesha Baynard 06:46
It was interesting, because it kind of came out of like a little quip that she made. I called her to let her know we were expecting another baby, which shocked her because our oldest was already seven years old, and also the oldest grandchild. And I was like, Hey, we’re having another baby. And she was like, well, maybe I’ll move and sell my house and come live with you. And it helped me with the baby. And I was thinking, Is she joking, because that could actually work. And so then I spoke with my husband about it, because the conversation was really between my mother in law, and we spoke on the phone at that time, a lot more frequently than my husband, I spoke with her. And I was always given the digest, which happens a lot in different marriages, but it’s okay. And when we were talking about it, we really were thinking about how to have grandparents be a part of our kid’s life, because we had always been living far from either of our sets of parents. And we both grew up with having grandparents be a huge part of our life, my husband had lived with his grandparents as a multi generational family. I used to spend extended summers with my grandparents in Mississippi, and then my grandmother would come back to Wisconsin and live with us for a few months. So we both had had positive experiences and what it was like to have hands on close by proximity, and really a multi generational lifestyle that seemed natural and normal fit for us. So it wasn’t out of the ordinary. But to really think about it in a practical way. And for a modern area, it really took us to a different place of how we saw ourselves as adult children, how we saw ourselves as parents of our kids. And then how we saw ourselves welcoming this whole extended idea of what it meant to be a family and how we could make it be as positive as possible.
Debbie Reber 08:32
That is so cool. And brave. It sounds very brave to me, and bold and bold to use your word. Yes, absolutely. Well, I’m curious to know what commonalities you have found, through your personal experience, and then working with other families and supporting multi generational families, in terms of the kinds of challenges we as parents have with our own parents when it comes to what’s going on with our kids. Like, are there some inherent kind of common challenges that you’ve experienced and seen within this dynamic?
Kanesha Baynard 09:04
Yeah, the first two things that always come up, and I talk a lot in workshops and with clients about this is thinking about roles and boundaries. Because oftentimes, as adult children, we have our lives in progress. We haven’t lived with our own parents in X number of years. I mean, some of us stayed at home longer than others, some of us left at 18, or wherever the age was, and we haven’t lived in the same household for years. So even though we know each other, our roles are dynamic, and our boundaries have shifted, and we might not have really looked at that in a concrete way. So when you think about having a multi generational household or you think about having a grandparent as a caregiver of your children, it really forces you to look at roles and boundaries. And the role might be you know, the grandparent looking at the adult child in the same lives as they did when they were, you know, adolescent, a teenager. A college student, where as right now they have a whole family, they might have an entire career, they have a different life. And that takes some conversations that take some time to get to know each other and to be open to what you learn about the other person, whether it be about the grandparent, whether it be about the adult child. And then when you add grandkids into the mix, the grandparents start to see the adult kids in a different role where they are actually in charge. They’re doing the same things, but perhaps in a different way that the grandparent once did. And the grandparents might start to learn something about themselves as parents, they might start to learn something about how parenting has changed how all these different schools of thought or ways to parent are acceptable, because at one point in time, there really was only quote, unquote, one way to do it. Because we didn’t have the internet to share. We didn’t have a lot of talk shows talking about parenting, we didn’t have a lot of parenting books, we didn’t have blogs about it. And it really can be an assault to the parenting system, for grandparents to see all these new and different ways. Because no one wants to be obsolete, nor wants to learn that they did parenting wrong. No one wants to see that. Everything I used to do as a parent has been thrown out. And oftentimes a grandparent might not understand that they’re feeling this way, that sense of loss, a sense of regret, a sense sometimes of confusion, or perhaps it’s anger. And then when conversations happen between the grandparent and perhaps the adult child, they’re not always coming from a neutral stance, there’s some emotion attached to it. Or it might be some anger, confusion, some type of emotion, just coming out sideways, and then that gets confusing. And then the roles and the boundaries sometimes are breached. And a lot of times people have just got to stop right there, let it all out, lay it bare before they can get started and having a really healthy grandparent as a caregiver or multi generational household.
Debbie Reber 11:57
Yeah, that is so fascinating. You know, with me, personally, I lived far away from my parents for Asher’s entire life, it wasn’t a conscious decision to do that. It’s just how things worked out. We were in Seattle when he was born. And then for the past three plus years, we’ve been living in the Netherlands. So my parents don’t get to spend that much time with Asher. And when he was younger, and we were still living in the States, maybe two to three weeks together per year was the total that we were together. And I do remember just how challenging those years were, especially when we were first discovering that he was uniquely wired, um, you know, because the kind of conventional parenting techniques and strategies were pretty much worthless for us in a lot of ways. And so we were educating ourselves and trying to figure out what to do and how to parent this child. And I was very aware that the way we were parenting Asher looks so different from the way my parents and the way my husband’s parents parented Derin and I. So I was very aware of that disconnect. And, you know, maybe I thought it was because of our child being such a uniquely wired person. But really, I understand just from hearing you talk about this, that’s, it is so different the way we parent today, in general, from the way our parents parented us.
Kanesha Baynard 13:15
I remember having a conversation with my own mother. And we’re very close. I’m an only child. So she’s very involved in my kid’s life, because I’m an only child, these are only two grandkids. And I welcome that. And sometimes it’s really good. And sometimes it’s tense. And one time She was visiting for an extended period, which was great. I loved having her. And I was having a conversation with my kids, and they were expressing themselves, and I expressed myself, and they expressed themselves. And it was probably a half an hour conversation that my mother witnessed. And then later, when the two of us were alone, she asked me, why did you let the kids go on like that? And in my mind, I’m like, What do you mean, we were having a conversation? And she said, why don’t you just have a more top down approach? I mean, that’s what I did. And you didn’t have to spend so much time on these discussions. So to her, she was thinking that the kids were using up more time than I had. And then to me, I was thinking, she thought that I wasn’t asserting enough authority. And we had a conversation about it. I just asked her, Why did it look that way to you, as opposed to saying, Why are you accusing me of something because I was a little defensive, I will admit, but I really want to have a better understanding of why she saw it that way. And then that helped me respond more thoughtfully and to just talk to her about how I parent it without saying, Well, when you parenting me, you did XYZ, it was just really open to conversation to understand how we communicate and why that’s important. And I told her, I said, you know, since you’re a parent, or grandparent, that’s a way it’s good for you to try this style. Because you’ll get more information from the grandkids, you’ll feel like you’ve spent more time with them and you’ll get to know them better. And I said, just practice it and see how it goes. And then you can tailor it to fit you. So given this openness, this opportunity for her to learn from me without me telling her that her way was wrong without her telling me that I’m wasting too much time, which is how I initially heard it. And it’s a tricky thing in the sense of these are conversations you might not have wanted to have with parents, or thought you had to have them in a lot of times when we’re so busy parenting, we’re busy, we might be overstressed, overtaxed. We don’t want to constantly have to explain ourselves, but at the same time, we want to have proper support, proper boundaries and have our relationship with our parents. And our kids’ relationship with our grandparents to be healthy as well. So it does take time.
Debbie Reber 15:41
Yeah. And I love that you were able to have that conversation in such a calm way. Because I think you’re absolutely right. You know, you talked about the feelings of loss or regret or confusion, or even anger that it could bring up in our parents, it is a very emotional thing. And it’s emotional for us, too. So I just love hearing you talk about how you were able to have that conversation in a way that didn’t feel judgy. And that didn’t put your mom on the defensive, but helped you both to kind of understand each other better. That’s really awesome.
Kanesha Baynard 16:12
Yeah, a lot of times when we’re all trying to figure this out, especially when we’re working with our kids, and they might be experiencing a challenge, whether it’s at home, at school, with peers, specifically dealing with how they’re differently wired. There’s a sense of powerlessness that happens for us as parents, it happens for the kids. And sometimes when the grandparents see us struggling with that, they have a sense of powerlessness. And that’s when they tend to go into this superhero mode, where they’re giving us all these tips telling us everything they read, telling us what they should do in this kind of top down way. And oftentimes, the attention is to solve a problem for us when it really just creates more problems. And this whole cycle of powerlessness creates these rifts between the adult child, the grandparents, and then also the grandchildren. And then everybody is left feeling a sense of, it’s a lot of chaos going on, when everybody’s trying to help. Everybody’s trying to be on the same page, but no one understands how to get there. And I think really looking at different protocols to support each other and having the systems in place really helps everybody involved, understand how they can be helpful even in the most tense moments.
Debbie Reber 17:22
One of the things I struggled with when Asher was younger was wanting my parents to see that I was doing a quote unquote Good job parenting Asher, I think we all feel this way. And, and then me feeling really inadequate when he would, you know, throw an epic meltdown or something. There were many situations I could recall at the moment. But the one that’s popping up for me is when we were visiting over Christmas, maybe Ash was four or five, and they were going to a train museum or something which should have been great because I think he was really into trains. But for some reason, the way this museum is structured, they made us walk through a gift shop before going in. And that was during the years when gift shops were like Asher’s nemesis. So, you know, even if he was allowed to choose a $1 item, he would spend what seemed like hours being anxious about, you know, not making the right choice or feeling this pressure, I have to get something but I don’t like anything. Or if we told him we weren’t going to the gift shop, that wouldn’t end well either. And so I think on this day, that’s what we did. We said, maybe we’ll visit the gift shop, but we’re going to do the train museum first. And that just was not going to work for Asher on that day. And he lost it like it was a big, big meltdown. It’s seared in my memory, I ended up putting them in the car, because there was nothing else to do with them. I just kind of stuck them in the car. My parents, Derin and I stood outside the car in this sub freezing temperatures. And we just waited it out. And it was probably close to an hour till that was over. And I remember just feeling so embarrassed and humiliated and just like a failure. And I imagined my parents, especially my dad, judging me thinking I was making the wrong decisions, or Asher was really spoiled, or I didn’t have a handle on this whole parenting thing. You know, and now of course, I don’t think that’s what was going on. And they probably felt really bad about it. But I was putting this immense pressure on myself. And that only added to how overwhelmed I was feeling. So what is going on in situations like this in your experience? And in those kinds of situations, which I know many of our listeners experience, this is not a rare thing for definitely wired kid. How can we take care of our own needs and our kids’ needs when our parents are witnessing these situations?
Kanesha Baynard 19:45
Well, one of the things I like to talk to families about and I usually start with the parents and extend to the grandparents when they invite them in is having this pal system and I just call it that it’s an acronym PAL and each letter stands for the P is for pay Patience, the A’s for assistance than the Ls are for love and learning. And I always tell parents to start with your PAL system, you know, have patience with yourself, have patience with a situation, your growth and learning about how to be a parent in this situation and then to how to how to parent your child. And always extend that patience in the situations where you know how to handle in a situation that you don’t know how to handle. And then assistants have a clear list of what you need. Be clear about your needs and your expectations when you need assistance. And if you have this clear list, when things go well, when things go, go kind of okay. And then they go completely what we would call a disaster, when oftentimes it’s not, but we feel like it’s a disaster, have a list of ways you can be assisted. So you can be clear on those you can ask for them, you don’t have to scramble, and you can feel better about getting the exact help that you need. And then the L for love and learning, you have to love yourself, you have to love what you’re going through. Because this is new to you day to day. Some things you have on lock other things you’re still learning and connecting love with learning, you just give yourself permission to be a learner in those situations and to lean on your assistance, and to have patience with yourself. And when the parents go through this, and they kind of create their own protocol around this, they can then invite the grandparents in to create their own protocol, then they can cross train the parents or grandparents on what it means to be a PAL to each other, to fully support the entire family just support the role of grandparents and parents. And then of course, ultimately to support the grandchild. Because everybody really wants to support the grandchild. And oftentimes, if we’re not on the same blueprint alone, what that looks like, again, I mentioned is chaos. And it’s not meant to be chaos. But that happens. And I feel like when parents give themselves this full permission to use a power system, they can be vulnerable, they can be honest. And then they can be clear about what they need, so that it clears up more of the anger, confusion, disappointment or denial, and oftentimes beer.
Debbie Reber 22:09
That is such good stuff. I mean, that makes total sense. It’s about having a plan, you know, because you’re right. In those situations we are, if we don’t have a plan, it does feel chaotic, and we’re not at our best for sure. And then also, I used to always feel like I needed to write a handbook for the grandparents so they would understand how to support Asher in tough situations. But this PAL approach is so nice and simple and clear. I love that.
Kanesha Baynard 22:38
I love your idea about writing the handbook. But to make it a little bit more simple. I do encourage families to have an annual time to reevaluate their PAL system even together to set intentions for that calendar year. Or maybe create a manifesto like I love the tilt parenting manifesto, maybe they can build upon that, or to set a you know, create a set of agreements or a mission statement. Because oftentimes, we just need a touchstone and refer back to so that we could all stay on the same page around being this multi generational family however it looks if the parents or caregivers, if there’s actually a living situation, or there’s more time being spent together and an integer intergenerational connection way. But having these annual commitments to look at the pet your pal system, form intentions, create a manifesto, create agreements, our mission statement, really makes everybody have a seat at the table. And that can include the grandchildren too, depending on the age, because we really want the family to be communicating to work together and to shift their values to be that we’re all in this together and it’s okay. However, it’s going to be okay. It’s great.
Debbie Reber 23:54
Okay, so let’s talk a little bit about triggers. Because, as you know, and I know, sometimes parenting can seem like one big trigger fest as we are trying to manage our own emotional well being while supporting our child in theirs. So from your experience, what are some of the more common triggers for parents and grandparents when it comes to navigating the relationship?
Kanesha Baynard 24:17
The biggest one I’ll just start with out of the gate is feeling like you’re being judged. I mean, that is a huge trigger in general and especially when it comes to parents trying to take care of their kids when you feel judged. I mean, people can go from Zen to complete crazed thinker in seconds and it’s because you know, there’s shame attached to it. There’s that feeling that you’re never going to get it right and that people you admire or people you actually care about are judging you and that’s just such a you know, vulnerable cornered space to be in and nobody likes it. So when you think about triggers and you can talk about this in your when you’re creating your power plan, you can name your triggers. I don’t like being judged. I don’t like being interrupted when I’m presenting new information about what’s going on with my son and daughter. I need you to wait at least a minute to ask additional questions because I’m thinking, like any of those things that really set you off like for me personally, when I’m working with my in laws and my own parents in regards to the kids, and they want to hear updates and all that, I always have to say, let me get all the information out. And then wait for me to ask you if there are any questions because I need to get all my thoughts out before we go into the discussion. Because I feel like if I’m interrupted, I’m going to lose my train of thought, I’m not going to be clear, and it frustrates me. So I always have to say that even now, I mean, my oldest is 17. So I’ve been saying this for a long time. But I have to say, let me get everything out. Before you get to ask your questions and wait for me to let you know, you can ask questions, because a trigger of mine is being interrupted like that when I’m trying to be clear. So when we are clear on what those triggers are, then we can put things in place to minimize them, they won’t 100% Go away, because it actually is a trigger. But having your own language around it to take care of yourself first, and then allow you to communicate with the grandparents is a really good way to not always feel tense when you have to talk with them, or interact with them or discuss what you want to do to support your son or daughter.
Debbie Reber 26:22
As you were going through the list of triggers. Another one that popped up for me that I’m wondering if you’ve had experience with is just having a grandparent making a decision or kind of stepping in and disciplining or doing something with your child that is against your philosophy as a parent?
Kanesha Baynard 26:41
Oh, yeah, yeah, that has happened to me, it’s a client. And that is a hard one in the sense of, I mean, you know, we’re super protective already as, as parents, and then sometimes when our children are having a challenge with whether it be just developmental or something that specific to their demeaned, tired, we are so sensitive to protecting them in those situations. And I had one client talk to me once where they were out at an event and her daughter was not feeling all the stimuli that was going on in the event, and she just had a meltdown. And what they would do in a meltdown is that they would just move her daughter to you know, a corner space and just stay really close to her not touching her not holding her and you know, not getting her out of space, not dragging her, but just guiding her to that corner and just having letting her have a space away. Well, they had talked about this with the grandparents, and they had a family function, a wedding, actually. And the daughter had a meltdown. And one of the grandparents, I can’t remember which one, the grandfather or grandmother but one of them grabbed her arm not aggressively, but you know, to pull her aside, and then it just only escalated. So then they ended up picking her up to take her out of the venue, because they thought it was too disruptive. And my client, just you know, the daughter was losing it, and my client was losing it. And then it turned into a yelling fest. And we were like, okay, that happened. You can’t do anything to change that. So all we need to do is talk about how we would have just done it differently. Not so much why it happened, when we could have up to our protocol and things like that, because then there’s going to be guilt, there’s going to be disappointment on everybody involved. And that just that’s not helped move it a little bit scored. And so I said the conversation is, let’s go back to what we agree to, why can’t we do that in the moment? How are you feeling, be honest about it? And then if it happened again, what do you think? How can we make sure it happens that way? It’s not so much that you didn’t do what I told you to do. I wanted you to be more clear about it. Because everybody panicked, and it happens. But the parents can be clear in my expectation is this is why as opposed to saying you’re not helping me. That’s usually what parents want to say: parents want to lash out because we are protective. We are mama bears at times, but that’s not going to help the situation. If you need to really lash out, I always encourage people to write it down in your journal exactly the way you want to say all the words you want to use all the language you want to app and then leave it there because then you can use that information to have the calmer conversation because all your emotions matter. If you need to get them out, I say get them out. But it’s not always within the conversation when you’re trying to strengthen the protocol around supporting yourself as a parent and supporting your child with the grandparents. That’s great. It’s hard though. Yeah. So hard.
Debbie Reber 29:38
Yeah, it is because especially in those I mean that situation that your client went through I can just imagine that I can almost feel the you know, the stress and anxiety have that in everyone’s eyes and this is a special occasion and you know when your child over what they’re like there’s so much going on. So I guess it really comes back to kind of taking care of yourself in that mode. And then also learning from that. So you can, again, have that clear plan.
Kanesha Baynard 30:05
And if something like that happens, it’s okay to take a break, you know, let the parents know, you know, we’re just gonna go on and communication break for one day for five days, whatever the case is because we do need to regroup and refuel after things like that. And it’s okay to say that a lot of times people I have to power on, I have to be strong, I’m an adult, adults need breaks to grandparents need breaks, kids need a break, it’s okay to take a break.
Debbie Reber 30:30
That sounds so mature, like I love that, just say, hey, you know what, we’re gonna just take a little communication break, so we can regroup. And then we’re gonna come back together and figure it out. I love that
Kanesha Baynard 30:39
You know, well, it’s hard. Sometimes when you don’t have your protocol that you know, you need that. A lot of times, we don’t know what to do, because we haven’t articulated to ourselves, if you get clear on your power system, I promise as you work through it, you will have more language to advocate for yourself to advocate for your child to build your relationship with the grandparents and the in laws.
Debbie Reber 30:59
It’s great. And one of the things I hear from a lot of parents in the tech community is that either their parents or their parents in law don’t totally buy what’s going on with the differently wired child. So there might be like, Oh, well, you were really willful as a child and you turned out fine. Or, you know, he seems fine to me, you’re being overly sensitive. So there’s a lot of dismissing that can happen. And hearing those types of comments from a family member can be especially difficult, because a lot of us are already feeling that, you know, I hear I still hear things like that all the time. Like, people doubt that there’s anything differently wired about Asher, I’m like, yeah, when he’s sitting reading and being pleasant, you know, there you would never know. But that can really like D legitimize our experiences. And when it’s coming from a family member, especially a parent, that can really be tough to take any advice for how parents with differently wired kids can kind of take care of themselves emotionally in that situation, while being true to their child, and respect their parents at the same time.
Kanesha Baynard 32:07
That is so hard just because it’s just not needed, that those kinds of conversations do not help. And what else often tell parents are if you are going to a book study, specifically around what’s going on with your differently wired child, if you’re going to a lecture, if you’re watching a program, you know, any type of education you’re doing for yourself, I would say invite the grandparent. And this is the time when adult kids can appeal to their own parents in the roles of parent child. You know, if I was talking to my mom, for example, saying, you know, Mom, I’m gonna go to this lecture about ADHD. And I would really like to have another lens on it, I would love to have your parenting lens, and your grandparenting lens on this when I go because I’m looking at it from parent. Will you attend with me. And it’s about our relationship together, our roles and our expertise. Know it’s about the child, but we’re just talking about our role together. So it’s a small invitation on that. And then when you have some common information in place, you’ve had this common learning experience. If a grandparent was to say, well, you know, you turned out well, or back in my day, this is the case, you have this reference point. To go back to you have this conversation to say, well remember when we both heard this, or remember, after the lecture, we discussed this, it’s a nice place to recenter the conversation, and have the grandparent do a self check before you will have to dive deeper in letting them know that when they potentially are wrong, and what they’re saying, they’ve hurt your feelings, they’re not being supportive, and this dismissiveness of what you’re dealing with, is very hurtful. It’s good for them to kind of do this self check the self evaluation, without you having to go fully there and kind of create a chasm in the middle. And the other piece too, I’ve been really happy to see this. You know, there’s the, you know, meetup.com and I’ve seen a growth in the types of meetups that are specific to grandparents in multi generational and caregiving situations where they’re creating their own meetups, specifically around being in, for example, a granny nanny, or they’re creating a meetup around being a grandparent to grandchild who has autism, or whatever the case may be. And they’re kind of creating this space, to have their own conversations around it and to support each other as grandparents so they can speak their own language. And some of the groups also extend to families working with that. And I think that’s another resource that really helps grandparents get on the same page with the adult kids, because it’s good to have the peer to peer conversations because as grandparents and as adult children, we are not in a peer to peer situation. That can often be tricky.
Debbie Reber 34:52
Yeah, I love that suggestion. All right. So say a parent listening to this conversation is really struggling in their relationship with their own parents or with their in-laws. And they want to implement this power system and kind of get started in shifting things. And maybe things are really not good, you know, because oftentimes, if we don’t address these things head on, they can deteriorate. Do you have any, like suggestions for how to begin that conversation to get things back on track,
Kanesha Baynard 35:24
I think one of the things that adult parents have to remind themselves is that in this whole game of parenting, you don’t have to do all this by yourself. So when you’re trying to build or rebuild the relationship with the grandparents, specifically around what you’re working through as a family and supporting your differently wired child, it’s good to get an outside party to help you facilitate these conversations, whether it be a workshop, or have a mentor come in and do it, maybe somebody within your spiritual organization that might have some expertise on that. And I feel like a lot of families have a lot of comfort with that choice. And then also getting a coach or spending some time having family meetings that are structured, where you list a topic per month, and you all agree to work on it. And you use any tools and tips that have worked for you, as the adult child parenting your differently wired child, and you spend time working with the grandparents on that. There are so many ways to have the conversations, but you have to think about how people communicate how comfortable they are with sharing their thoughts and feelings, and who can be the best person or what can be the best method to facilitate that. So having a mentor or coach doing a workshop, having someone from your religious organization, and or doing it yourself, those are ways to really get started and to have it be a fruitful conversation as opposed to just lip work.
Debbie Reber 36:50
Such great advice, can you share, this is brilliant, I just have to say I have loved this conversation. I’m so excited that we’re bringing this to the tilt community because it’s not the kind of conversation we’ve been talking with a lot of parent coaches about specific challenges that our kids are facing. And these kinds of conversations I think are so important because of our experiences as parents, it’s really critical that we take care of ourselves and figure out how to navigate this in a way that is more peaceful for us. So our kids can benefit from that. So this is just fantastic. And I want to make sure people know how to get in touch with you. What’s the best place that parents can connect with you online and just kind of learn about all your work? Oh,
Kanesha Baynard 37:35
Yes, I am really happy we’ve been able to have this conversation. Because I often feel this whole multi-generational conversation, people kind of leave it off, because they haven’t really thought of it as being a true thing. And so I write a lot about a lot about it on my blog, and you can find me at Bold living today.com or Kinesia, bainer calm. And I have a lot of resources and tips and some podcasts on different things about relationships in law dynamics, and really how to be the best parent you want to be. And then how to extend that with your support crew or your bolt squad, as I like to talk about. And then yes, because we all need help. We need a bold entourage, a squad, a group to support us in doing the things we want to do well for ourselves and for our family. So it takes a huge group of people to do that. And you want specific people on your team. So I really support people in having information and how to do that, and having systems and how to create that. So you can find that on my website and blog. And then I also have a book, it’s a workbook, which I love. And it’s called the self love playbook for bold thinkers. And it’s really designed to help people create their own self love curriculum so that they can take better care of themselves, they can understand their essential expectations, and really create a mindset that allows them to be loving and nurturing to themselves so that they can then extend that to family members into their lives into their work and things that really make them tick and make them happy. So having the playbook would be a really good tool for families to use as they’re thinking about their power system as they’re putting their family protocols in place. Or maybe as they’re building their own mission statement and how to be a fully functioning and healthy multi generational family team and supporting their child. So fun resources that are easily accessible, and a really way for people to be creative and connect.
Debbie Reber 39:32
That’s great. I will for listeners, I highly encourage you to check out Kanesha’s stuff and I will make sure all the links to everything we’ve talked about are on the show notes. And I totally want a bold entourage. I love that. Yes, I’m building a bold entourage. Hopefully you will be a part of mine.
Kanesha Baynard 39:50
Absolutely I’m already in. I promise you Debbie, I am in your bold entourage.
Debbie Reber 39:55
Excellent. Thank you. Listen, thank you so much for being on the podcast again. This is going to be so helpful for our community. And we as parents have differently wired kids, we have a lot of opportunity to explore all of these issues. So now we have all these great tools to make it easier. So thank you again for coming on the show.
Kanesha Baynard 40:15
My pleasure, Debbie, thank you for having me. And thank you to the Tilt community as well.
Debbie Reber 40:21
Thank you so much for tuning into the tilt parenting podcast for more information on Kanesha. A link to her website bold living today, and all the resources we talked about in this episode, visit the show notes page at tiltparenting.com/session34. I wanted to take a minute to thank those of you who filled out the podcast suggestion form and shared with us what you want to hear about for future episodes. We’ve got lots of great episodes coming up, but we want to make sure we’re bringing the kinds of guests and topics that you want to hear about to share your idea with us visit tiltparenting.com/podcast and click on the suggestion form link. And thanks again for listening. For more information on Tilt Parenting visit www.tiltparenting.com
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