Lisa Heffernan and her family
What would you tell your younger self – when your kids were babies/toddlers and then school age, that you wish you knew then?
Mary Dell: I would try to let my children be more independent and push them to be a little more self-reliant. When I stopped working and became a SAHM for a decade, they were in 5th and Kindergarten and I did so much more for them than I needed to because I had the time I never had before.
Why is it important to still be “all in” as a parent, even when your kids seem to need you less?
Mary Dell: The high school and college years are some of the most consequential years in parenting and the ones where we gradually move from telling our children what to do to acting more as a coach or mentor. They really don’t need us less, they need us in different, hugely important ways.
How has parenting older kids/young adults changed since we were that age?
Mary Dell: Research shows that our older kids/young adults come to their parents for advice on careers, finances, relationships and that is different than when we were their age. We were more likely to ask a friend than our parents.
What’s next for Grown & Flown?
One of the biggest issues facing parents of teens is the college admissions process and paying for college. It is the second biggest expense for most families after their homes. Most college counselors have a heavy load of students and families turn to the internet where there is much speculation and misinformation. We have created College Admissions: Grown and Flown
to help parents with access to some of the best known admissions experts and former admissions officers in the US. It has been an exciting project for us and families have found it invaluable.
Anything else you’d like to share?
We are always looking for incredible parenting stories, or parenting experts to share. The Grown and Flown website is very much a collaboration of over 700 people dedicated to making sure parents feel seen and have access to high quality in formation. We love meeting new writers and experts and sharing their insights!
We love to support local businesses. What are your favorite places in your area to:
Go for girl’s night:
Have fun as a family: At home!