How to Offer Criticism to Your Adult Kids

Deal with the tension instead of ignoring it

Chatting with friends and gym buddies, Cathy Sikorski, the mother of two 20-something daughters, began hearing a common confession: The moms were afraid to say anything critical to their adult children because it might anger them.

One woman didn’t want to suggest to her daughter that the deck of her new home needed to be power-washed. Another hesitated to discuss a game plan with her boomerang daughter who was at loose ends. Sikorski had angered her bride-to-be daughter when she shared some wedding gown photos without getting permission first.

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