Parenting Advice: Be a bridgebuilding parent.

One of the best pieces of advice I have received was The hours you put in leading to your child’s 11th birthday determine the strength of the bridge of communication you walk across in their teen years. One of the things I have seen to many times is parents that made no investment in their relationship with their child in the elementary year be completely shocked to find out in their child’s teen years they have no desire to have a relationship with their parent. The elementary years are the years you create that ebb and flow of relationship with your kids.

What do parents need to start building in the life of their elementary age child?

1. A healthy age appropriate view of sex
2. Healthy boundaries as to how and when to address mom and dad.
3. How to treat the opposite sex
4. Sometimes you just need to listen and say nothing.
5. You need to demonstrate to your kids at a young age they can tell you ANYTHING.
6. When your kids are young you need to prove to them you can earn their trust, when they are teens they need to earn your trust.

So in light of all of this creating opportunities to build relationships I want to take a quick second to plug my mom’s first book. Building relationship bridges with her kids is something my mom has always done well. In fact so well she has written a book on how Mom’s can build relationships with their daughters. I will blog about this book more after I read it. I just want to plug my mom’s book as much as possible because much of what I know about raising kids is because of the amazing example my mom and dad were to me growing up. If you are looking for a great book about mothers and daughters you need to buy my mom’s book Time Together.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

12 thoughts on “Parenting Advice: Be a bridgebuilding parent.

  1. Sam,

    Great post. I would add that I think #4 and #5 can be particularly difficult for Dads. I think many of us are "wired" to want to fix the problem. That's makes listening instead of fixing something that we have to be very intentional about both with our kids and in our marriages. As for #5, I know that in many circumstances (especially where the father is the primary disciplinarian), kids are a lot more comfortable talking to their mothers about "anything" than their fathers. As dads, I think this ability to talk about anything is something that we have to nurture. There was a chapter in the Collaborate book (I can't remember which one right now) about how one Dad set up something akin to a "safe zone" in his house where his daughters knew they could go to talk to him about anything. It paid major dividends as they got older and into their teenage years.

    Kudos to your Mom on her first book. I makes sense that you come from a lineage of a great thinkers. That's where you get the ability to come up with all these great articles.

    Take care.

    • So true Wayne. We men are easily distracted and impatient. Thank God for the women in our lives that make us better. I appreciate your kind words your a blessing Wayne.

  2. Sam,

    Great post. I would add that I think #4 and #5 can be particularly difficult for Dads. I think many of us are "wired" to want to fix the problem. That's makes listening instead of fixing something that we have to be very intentional about both with our kids and in our marriages. As for #5, I know that in many circumstances (especially where the father is the primary disciplinarian), kids are a lot more comfortable talking to their mothers about "anything" than their fathers. As dads, I think this ability to talk about anything is something that we have to nurture. There was a chapter in the Collaborate book (I can't remember which one right now) about how one Dad set up something akin to a "safe zone" in his house where his daughters knew they could go to talk to him about anything. It paid major dividends as they got older and into their teenage years.

    Kudos to your Mom on her first book. I makes sense that you come from a lineage of a great thinkers. That's where you get the ability to come up with all these great articles.

    Take care.

    • So true Wayne. We men are easily distracted and impatient. Thank God for the women in our lives that make us better. I appreciate your kind words your a blessing Wayne.

  3. As a mother of four daughters…I am looking forward to reading your Mom's book!!!

    Thanks for all the parenting info and advice it has prompted me to share more thoughts and resources with the parents I serve. Keep it coming.

    • Heather thanks. I think you will enjoy my moms book. She has a very unique childhood her stories are very engaging. My mom always amazes me with her child raising wisdom. She's the best.

  4. As a mother of four daughters…I am looking forward to reading your Mom's book!!!

    Thanks for all the parenting info and advice it has prompted me to share more thoughts and resources with the parents I serve. Keep it coming.

    • Heather thanks. I think you will enjoy my moms book. She has a very unique childhood her stories are very engaging. My mom always amazes me with her child raising wisdom. She's the best.

  5. Wow! My takeaway was this. When your kids are elementary school, you decide if you are going to have a relationship with your kids. When your kids become teenagers, they decide if they are going to have a relationship with you. Great word. Thanks!

  6. Wow! My takeaway was this. When your kids are elementary school, you decide if you are going to have a relationship with your kids. When your kids become teenagers, they decide if they are going to have a relationship with you. Great word. Thanks!