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Thread: Preparing children for real life

  1. #1
    I wanted to start a new discussion that spins off of an old one in Year 4. Marcia said this,
    Hey, Mary

    I know EXACTLY what you mean, and we adopt that approach as much as we possibly can with Grammar students using Year 4, but here's a thought for us all in considering what to teach our maturing teens.

    The evils of the world in which we live are real, and your kids are going to have to face them, sooner than you think possible. As your kids become post-pubescent (like, 14 or 15) they'll begin to move in ever-widening circles outside of your home. Within four or five years of that time, they'll be done with high school and start college, or move into the work force.

    The evils of our day permeate the Internet, the TV news and newspapers, talk radio, and the conversations of virtually all adults. Though it seems REALLY REALLY hard to introduce these sullying topics to our pure and holy children, if we do not, how can we best prepare them for the deluge to come?

    I am REALLY asking this question of you ladies. It's not gratuitous. I've asked it of myself, and came to the conclusion that I had to teach my kids about the evils of our society in order to prepare them to process it biblically. That said, I didn't dump it on them too fast or too soon. EACH of us HAS TO get before the Lord, who gives generously and without reproach, to find the answer to this question. And, as with all battles, the Lord may have different strategies for different ones of us. We need to share, trusting that each of us is prayerfully walking to the best of her ability before the holy God whom we all love.

    I would love to hear how everyone approaches this parenting quandary of our times. :]

    Blessings,
    Marcia

    No one can do me a greater kindness in this world than to pray for me.
    --Charles Spurgeon


    My oldest will graduate in 3 years and then be off in the "real" world. He is so much more naive than I was at his age and SO much more than his peers all around us. We don't have cable, he and his brother are the only teens without cell phones ( no I am not exaggerating and a lot of them have I-phones or I-touches) Technology seems like it has gotten so all consuming in this age. My oldest will be getting a phone for Christmas as I have starting seeing how it would be helpful as he is going more places by himself and will be driving in March by himself. He is a great kid and very responsible with chores and with his schoolwork. However, he has control issues and we have had some battles over the computer in the past with him over-riding parental controls and once going to sites he shouldn't have. I guess what scares me is that in 3 years, he can basically watch anything he wants on tv or look up anything he wants to on the internet. Yes, we have talked about all sorts of things regarding purity and such and the damage things can do, but still. It scares me. Preparing him academically is easy for me. Preparing to make sure they don't mess up morally... But maybe that isn't really my job. I guess it is God's to convict. ( MM..wonder where he got control issues????) Anyway, right now they don't have an appetite for all the movies their friends are seeing. They love to look at plugged in or listen to the podcast and we have lots of discussion of current events and music and such. So I guess we have lines of communication that are open as we talk about all sorts of things constantly. For isntance last night we were talking about how HOuston elected a lesbian mayor. HE brought it up. And I guess that is what worries me about the woman in Year 4 who doesn't want words like gay or lesbian brought up to a 12 or 13 year old. At that point, they have so many questions of their own. Yes, I want to keep them pure, but in just a few years they will be navigating the world on their own among people who know a lot more about those subjects. I want them to be wise biblically, so we talk a lot. No anwers here, but the future just scares me to death. I want ot make sure they choose well.

    Christine

  2. #2
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    DH and I have been discussing controlled exposure for the last year or so. Our oldest is 12 almost 13...we can not control every aspect of our children's lives. We can bring up the things they are likely to be exposed to in our homes at the dinner table and at other times though. We can talk to them about what we believe and give a sinopsis of what others believe and give them encouragement to think about those things.(while we pray for them) We figure if we bring things up (like sex,or homosexuality or lying and cheating etc) it takes the shock value away. They know we have heard of such things and will not shy away. Our hope is to become a safe place for them to process and ask questions. Divorce came up tonight...which led to choosing a marriage partner which led to staying pure emotionally and physically which led to trusting your family to see what you cannot. I don't pretend to know all the answers but this has helped us to grow with our children, and feel as though they won't be blind sided by all the world has to offer. Hopefully they will see the green pastures God has for them instead of seeking greener pastures elswhere. but only time will tell.

  3. #3
    I think what matters is a child's heart. You can shield them and keep them pure (unexposed) but when they leave home the leap into sin (all the good stuff they weren't allowed to do). They can also be more exposed to the world but have a pure heart that is repulsed by ungodly things. I think what matters is being able to lead your child's heart with the word of God so they are protected by his word and not your rules, as God will go with them into the world and you cannot.

    I have thought about this because it concerns me too but my children are young so I have no practical experience with this type of thing.

    I have no problem with anatomy nudity and I have looked at bladder control with my son and we have done the basics of what makes a male a male and a female a female. Sometimes I think it is better for us to discuss something as part of life than hide it so kids become curious and seek out their own answers. We have also been to a pro-life rally with the kids so they have a basic understanding of abortion. I'd love to shield them from it but if we don't take a stand it will never change.

    One final point, my sister and I were virgins when we married, my brother conceived two children out of wedlock (very early in the relationship). Why am I telling you this? Because no matter what you do, and how well you train them each of your children will make their own decisions. We train them the best we can and we place them in God's hands, but what they choose to do with their lives is between them and God.
    Kylie (Homeschooling in Melbourne, Australia)
    TOG Year 3
    C (12, D)
    D (10, UG)
    J (4)
    K (2)

  4. #4
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    midwest
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    If there is anything I have learned it is that coming from a christian home and or homeschooling them is no garuntee...all of us has fallen short...I keep hoping that walking out my faith truthfully and authentically(struggles messines and all) will help them and encourage them to choose well...none of us ever chooses perfectly...thank God for His grace and mercy.

  5. #5
    Amen to that. It is so important to let our kids see our failures and that they aren't fatal. I try very hard to apologise to my children when I have wronged them. How can I expect them to ask forgiveness of others and be forgiving if it's not modelled in our home.
    Kylie (Homeschooling in Melbourne, Australia)
    TOG Year 3
    C (12, D)
    D (10, UG)
    J (4)
    K (2)

  6. #6
    My oldest are 16 & 17 and we had a real life issue with language and this is how we handled it. When they were in their preteens and early teens it was obvious that many of their friends were starting to use inappropriate language. We certainly could govern what was said around us but not their friends. So we told them....do not use these words around us but it was their choice what they said around friends. In our mind...if they could contril their tongue enough to use appropriate languate around us then we at least knew that there was some self-control and some wise decision making on their part. They were going to need to govern themselves and make the choice to honor God with their language or not.

    There was no question in my mind that they choose to use inappropiate language with their friends. We talked about it here and there and my husband and I prayed. At this point in time it was up to our young men and God. We have taught them what is right and what honors God but now it between them and their Lord.

    God worked in an amazing way in one of my son's heart. About 7 months ago he came to my husband and myself and said that if he was going to go to Bible Study and do this Christian thing then he needed to start doing what was right in God's eyes and could we help him. He said he had been using horrible language and doing things away from us that didn't honor God. We have seen incredible growth in him.

    In our house it has always been about appropriate exposure and understanding that we train our children but their actions and heart issues are between them and God. As my children have gotten older I am realizing more and more that it is isn't about the do's and don'ts but about our relationship with God and their relationship with God.

    Blessings,
    Barb

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