The following might be a painful exercise. Carefully answer each question truthfully. YOU are doing no one, least of all your adult child, any favors by SUGAR-COATING the painful reality. If you are unable to be objective, ask someone close to the situation to help. HOWEVER, don't get angry with the person if he or she tells YOU things YOU don't want to hear.
1.) Truthfulness: Does my adult child tell me the truth about his activities? (Or have you caught him in lies on more than one occasion?)
2.) Temperament: Does my child have an even temper? Or is he prone to mood swings? Does he often display irritability, annoyance, and impatience? Does he withdraw from interaction with others?
3.) Empathetic: Is my adult child able to empathize with the hurts of others or is he most likely unaware of others' pain or unable to identify with their plight?
4.) Personality: Which word best describes my child: warm or cold? Is he often personally cold toward other people....or is warm and inviting to people he meets?
5.) Selflessness: Which word is more accurate in describing my child, "humble" or "prideful"? Is he egocentric? Cocky? Does the world revolve around him and his own desires, or is he able to give himself to others to help meet their needs?
6.) Emotionally stable: Is he able to handle his emotions maturely....or do his emotions (anger, depression, guilt) drive his actions?
7.) A healthy conscience: Is my child able to feel the appropriate guilt for his wrong actions? Or is guilt something he rarely feels or tries to rationalize away by placing blame elsewhere?
8.) Independent: Is he more independent or dependent? Does he consistently see that his needs are met through his own efforts or must he rely on others to supply his needs?
9.) Physically responsible: Does he treat his body with respect....or is he careless about his health?
10.) Responsibility: Is my child assuming full responsibility for his life? (Does he follow through on promises made? Are bills paid on time? Does he show up on time for work?)
Hat Tip: Setting Boundaries With Your Adult Children
Next Week: Painful Exercise Part 2