Parenting

Tackling Tough Subjects

Tackling tough subjects really starts at age two.  Let me explain, because I see this all the time.  It’s cold and a two-year-old doesn’t want to wear a sweater.  She pitches a fit and her mom gives in.  Ten years later, the two-year-old is now twelve and doesn’t want to wear more than six inches of clothes.  Mom wants her to wear more but the daughter pitches a fit.  Chances are the daughter will win.

“It’s just clothes,” you might say about the above. “How is that a tough subject?” Well, follow this progression: what she wears will determine the kind of dates she attracts.  I consider dating a tough subject because who she dates will impact whether or not she has sex.  And, well, I can go on and on about the consequences of that path.

What to do?  Three things…

1. Parent with the future in mind.  Befriend women with older children or volunteer to teach Sunday school for teenagers. Be aware of what’s ahead.

2. Don’t give in when you know you are right.  If you do, the child will think you really weren’t right in the first place, or else you wouldn’t  have given in.  Then they will start thinking they are always right.

3. Talk to them about tough things even when you think they are not listening.  Get creative with your timing.  Look for opportunities in positive moments.  Be clear about expectations and consequences.  Don’t be intimidated when they are angry with you.  They will mature and one day appreciate the boundaries you set for them.

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  • This was short and sweet and so on target! Coming from a mother of 2 teenage girls. Young moms- go back and read the blog because it is important. As young moms it is hard to think so far into the future such as their adult and teenage years but you have to do it. Things that might seem cute or “no biggy” now will not be in 10 years when they are still doing them.

  • angie

    i am the mom of 4 kids now 3, 4, 6, & 8 – first off, let me say, that, like everyone, i have challenges and, by no means am perfect! however, on this note, i do try very hard to be cognizant now of how things will impact them down the road – i.e., parent for the right reasons now, which also includes keeping the future in mind. i am very intentional and draw my strength from the Lord, so will not stop, but… honestly, the biggest challenge there is other people/parents who tell me the way i do things is ‘too much work’ (you know, like being consistent, ‘making’ my kids help around the house, following through on discipline, etc) i just keep praying, knowing that someday it will ‘pay off’ and that i’ll be able to look back and not have regrets, but still… it would really help if more parents would back each other instead of saying things like ‘really,it’s ok, s/he can have it’ when i’ve already said no to something!! {vent over} 🙂