Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Bringing up teenagers
Just when you thought you have it down pat, your child's teen years arrive and suddenly, everything changes. What worked before won't work now as your child tries to assert his independence.
I'm glad there are resources out there for parents of teenagers today. One of them is the book Parenting Teens written by Evelyn Ramos Pajaron with her husband Teody (published by Church Strengthening Ministry, 2009, 267 pp.).
In it, Evelyn and Teody of Campus Crusade for Christ go personal and talk about how they raised their kids Charissa and Hesedel during the tumultuous teenage years. Both of them write from the heart as they share lessons learned in communicating with their teens, handling boyfriend/girlfriend issues, talking about sex, dealing with teens' need for gadgets (they're the I.T. generation after all), setting boundaries, disciplining, having debut parties and celebrating their teen's passage into manhood (turning 21) and the clincher--letting go. What I like about the book is that the authors don't "preach down" to their readers. They just tell it like it is, the way you would talk with your close friend over coffee. Another plus: it's written by Filipinos and they wrote it with the Filipino culture in mind.
Some gems from the book:
* "Mothers cannot and were never meant to do parenting all by themselves. And this is especially more important during the challenging teen years. Fathers play such an underrated but extremely crucial role in the home."
* "He (God) is our partner in rearing and dealing with our teenagers... He loves them with a passion more than we do, and the love that we feel for our children is nothing compared to His love and His wanting the best for them."
* "If we don't take the lead in teaching our children the right view of sex as God's gift to be enjoyed within the bounds of marriage, they will acquire our hang-ups and adopt the world's view of sex."
* "If we want our homes to be a place where our teens hang around, then we need to loosen up, relax, and see humor in our everyday lives."
* "[Make] them feel they are loved regardless of how they behave... Try to get into their world once in a while. Listen more and talk less."
VERSE OF THE WEEK: Keep my commands and you will live; guard my teachings as the apple of your eye. Proverbs 7:2