Motherhood

Culture War

Recently, Kara asked me how she can survive the culture war for her family. If I understand her question correctly, I think she is asking how she can keep her family together while there is a war for the souls of our families. For me, Kara, it’s to keep the lines of communication open. My husband and I are very open with each other. We talk about everything. We want this attitude to filter down to our children so we talk with them. Our desire is that when issues arise in our sons’ lives that they don’t understand and possibly even know to be wrong, that they won’t even think twice about coming to us. It’ll be like second nature. Example. My 9-year old son came home after attending an event with his friend recently. He informed me that there were several inappropriate things there such as pictures and cuss words on stickers. This information he offered was a natural response for him. He knew he could and can always come to his dad or me with anything. We know that we cannot shield our children from all of the things begging for their attention so we combat it with communication. Communication is key. Anyone else got anything to share with Kara?

17 thoughts on “Culture War”

  1. I agree that communication is key. We have (finally) just started doing “family night” every week at our house. Sometimes, we let the kids plan family night. It could be something as simple as a picnic in the living room watching a classic Disney movie or playing games or going out. No matter what, it’s about engaging each other. We hope that these things build a family dynamic that creates a safe place for our children. So, when pulled in directions that are not Christ-like, they not only share these things with us, but they want to.

  2. Build her family up by speaking positive words over their life.. I hear so many olympians lately say…”My parents told me, I could accomplish ANYTHING if I put my mind to it”…and I think it is a simple testimony to the power of our words!

  3. I love all these answers. I would add setting the standard of what is acceptable for your family BEFORE they encounter it. That way (hopefully) it takes away the shock factor a little and instantly sends up a red flag for them when they come across those things we wish they wouldn’t have to deal with

  4. I agree 100%! It’s all about communication. I try to shelter my kids as much as I can, but more importantly, I want them to always know that they can come to me with anything.

    So far, it’s working! πŸ™‚ I think it’s important to remember too that our response is key when they come to us. Not freaking out and tripping up over what they say. But calmly responding (not reacting) to their issue at hand.

    Great stuff!

  5. I think breaking down things for them to understand why things are bad is very helpful. If you just tell them that it is bad and leave them guessing as to why they just don’t get it

  6. Well I think the media provides plenty of opportunities to speak truths into your kids. Explain what was wrong and how it is not showing redeeming behavior.
    We talk about things all the time with our kids. Especially when they go somewhere new we discuss possible scenarios as well.
    Talk talk talk. Thats all I have to say πŸ™‚

  7. One thing that I learn from my dad is that if you encouraged your kids to be open to you, don’t punish him/her for opening up later.

    I can talk to my mom and dad pretty much about anything and while we maintain the ‘dad and son’ respect and hierarchy, we can still talk about a lot of things and get each other’s perspective and free to disagree at times.

    The reason why this happens: My dad had a very controlling-I can do no wrong-father and he vowed to himself that his children will not receive the same treatment.

    Yes, I got the most awesomest dad.

  8. Mary….amen on “not freaking out”! Our kids will only come to us with the things they BELIEVE we can handle. If we come apart at the tiniest infraction they will NEVER bring us the big stuff.

    I’ve also learned to show grace and acceptance for their friends when they make mistakes. Children watch and remember those reactions from their parents and use it to gauge how much grace they think mom and dad will have with THEM.

    We also tell our kids things that are a little above their current age level in anticipation of what they will be facing. Prior to starting 7th grade we told our daughter that by the end of the year some kids in her grade would be experimenting with sex.

    When it happened we looked like prophets (hold the applause) her trust in us skyrocketed, and SHE COULDNT WAIT to tell us about it.

  9. I totally agree with Roger that explaining WHY things are bad or not right for our family is important, because what we want to happen is for our kids to learn to make right choices on their own someday.

  10. love what jenn said. our words are indeed very powerful. i love what the bible says…’never withhold a kind word when its in your power to give it” i take that with me everywhere i go. its something that can be offered anytime – we can always find something positive to say..even in the midst of differences…and often times, it is those things that create common ground.

  11. What would your advice be on developing that kind of communication with a husband that doesn’t want to have open deep communication?
    I want to have that with my husband but he seems to have this “man battle” within him telling him that it is “unmanly” to open up.

  12. Although I am not a parent we work with youth and I’d like to say that you should be spending more time with your kids, pouring into them they are spending in the “culture” (friends, video games, ipods, with friends, etc.). One rule still applies…garbage in, garbage out. If you are putting the right things in, then you can expect for the right things to come out.

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