Dear Kids, It’s okay to be mad at me…

Dear Kids,

It’s okay to be mad at me.

Sometimes we make decisions for you that you don’t agree with or understand. You feel voiceless and frustrated.

Sometimes I overreact and I misunderstand.

Sometimes you just have a bad day. It’s okay, I have those days too.

Sometimes you get scared and your reaction is anger.

It’s okay to be mad.

Here’s what I want you to know:

There’s nothing I care more about than you. There’s no one I’d rather protect from all pain than you.

If I could, I would command the world to hold still for you. I would silence every lie and I would tell every voice to speak the truth: that you are amazing, that you are great, and that you are unstoppable. I would chisel into stone the words: you are strong enough to do tough things.

There’s nothing in my life harder than letting you hurt and knowing I can’t fix it. I can walk with you and hold your hand. I can speak truth and speak truth and speak truth, and I can love you no matter what, but I can’t take your pain.

What I can do though is this:

I can make space for you to be mad at me,

and I can let you be and feel what you feel.

Sometimes I try and encourage you before you’re ready. I tell you the “bright side” and it’s not what you need; I’m sorry. I will try harder to sit with you in the feeling that you feel and be your safe place.

I used to think that anger and fear were bad emotions, something I could bury with ice cream and cheap TV. I told myself that there was something wrong in my heart when I felt rage rumbling. I used to think I was weak and insecure when fear would consume me, but it isn’t true. Sometimes we have to walk through the pain to come out the other side. If you do that my love, it won’t consume you, and it won’t consume your life…I promise.

I want you to know you can feel everything and anything you need to feel when you’re with me.

Burying it doesn’t work anyway; I know, I’ve tried.

If I could I would build a mile high wall around your heart and protect you from every hurtful thing, but it turns out I can’t, my love. It turns out that wouldn’t really be love at all.  You’re not going to like or understand every decision we make for you. Sometimes we are going to disappoint you, and sometimes you’re going to feel angry and not know why. I want you to know that I love you and I am WITH YOU every step of the way.


I don’t want to ever disappoint you or let you down, but the truth is I do sometimes and I’m probably going to keep doing that all of my life.


I’ve never had a better reason to be perfect than you, but even that’s not enough.

This life is messy. Sometimes your heart might be broken into a million pieces with recovery far out of sight. Sometimes the future feels dim and the past feels bright, but let me tell you something: you are going to make it, you are going to be okay. We are going to walk this road together, we are going to feel the feelings, and we are going to pass through to the other side.

The steps might be dimly lit and confusing, you might not always be fun to be around, and fear might sometimes dictate your thoughts and opinions, and that’s okay. That’s normal. I am with you. I am with you when the sun shines and when the sky darkens with thunder.

There will be both, and we will be together for both.




Jess is Mama to Malachi (10), Scout (8), Oaklee (6), and Haven (4). She writes about the joy and the craziness here at Her and her husband Graham are currently moving across the country with their crew. You can follow here, Facebook, and Instagram.


12 responses to “Dear Kids, It’s okay to be mad at me…”

  1. So true. We forget that kids are allowed to have feelings other than happiness and sometimes it’s best to just be with them and let them feel their anger or sadness or frustration. ❤️

  2. Love this so much! Working to encourage all the feelings is one of my greatest goals as a mama!

  3. I have learned that allowing my girl the space to be where she’s at provides more grace then when I try to fix it. But that is also one of the hardest things to do. You have such an amazing way with words!

  4. I am sure God will use the sweetness, in which you share with them your most sincere thoughts, as the salve to heal their bruised egos and hearts. AND it will make them as strong as Oak…in the end. Hugs to you for being such a loving Mama.

  5. This has become a huge part of our life lately! Being a blended family has had some major ups and downs, but we’re working hard to let everyone be heard! ❤️

  6. Beautiful letter, Jessica. It’s tough to teach them about emotions. We’re working on the flip side of this. Even though we might be mad at them we still love them.

  7. Thank you for this.

  8. I love reading everything you write. Love love love.

  9. Thank you 😌

  10. Thank you for that amazing text.That’s exactly how i feel about my kid and parenthood❤

  11. […] (18 months), but also love storing away little nuggets like this for when daughter is older. This letter from a mama to her kids allowing and encouraging! all the feelings. Love this. Sometime the emotional side of parenting […]

  12. This is such a touching letter. It is so important to tell them that we understand what they go through and it is ok to not be able to handle it.

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