Category: Children

Teens Need To Be Loved By Their Parents

It is essential that teenagers feel loved by parents. I remember Ashley, who at 13 was being treated for a sexually transmitted disease. She said, “When my father left, I thought it was because he didn’t love me. When my mother remarried, I felt she had someone to love her, but I still had no one to love me. I met this boy at school. He was older than me, but he liked me. I couldn’t believe it. He was kind to me, and I really felt loved by him. I didn’t want to have sex, I just wanted to be loved.”

Do you know your teens love language? I wrote my book: The 5 Love Languages of Teenagers to help parents love teens effectively. Does your teen feel loved?

Q&A: Guns In The Home With Kids Around

Q: What are you feelings about having guns in the home? My husband has a collection and sometimes it makes me nervous with my children also here.

A: I certainly understand what this wife is saying because for some people, guns are very fearful. To other people, who grew up in homes where the family was involved with hunting, target practice and that sort of thing, guns are not all that fearful. It has to do with whether you’ve been trained in safety with guns; likely your husband has and you probably have not. So I would suggestion that you expose yourself to the guns and learn the safety issues of the gun. I’d also suggest that the guns be locked up so the children do not have access to them.

Viewing Marriage As A Covenant

When Dr. Ross Campbell and I were writing our book: How To Really Love Your Adult Child, we discovered research data that indicated that when single adults, ages 20-30 were asked to describe the kind of marriage they would like, 87 percent said, “I want to have one marriage that will last a lifetime.” They have seen their parents divorce and that is not what they want. However, many of them have no idea how to have a life-long marriage. I’d like to suggest that it begins by viewing marriage as a covenant, not simply a contract. A covenant is initiated for the benefit of the other person. “I love you so much, and I believe that I can enrich your life.” That is covenant language.


When Dr. Ross Campbell and I wrote our book: How To Really Love Your Adult Child, we discovered many parents who were frustrated with their young adult children. They were anticipating an empty nest, but the young adult is not ready to fly. So, what’s a parent to do? They must give the child more freedom and more responsibility. Freedom and responsibility are opposite sides of the same coin. If they are going to live with parents, they need to assume responsibilities in the areas of finances, chores, and common courtesies. In our book we suggest guidelines. It’s the only way to have a peaceful household. Responsibility is a part of becoming an adult. Love holds children accountable.

The Need To Have Plans

I thought that when children turn 18 they were supposed to get a job, go to college, or join the military. It seems like it’s taking longer to get the kids out of the nest these days. Many young adults are choosing to remain at home while going to college. Or, they want to take a year to travel, or just relax. What’s a parent to do? The mother eagle picks her young up and drops them in open air. They either fly or she rescues them a time or two. But eventually they fly. How do you do that for your young adult children? It all starts when they are in their early teens. You plant the idea that at 18, when they finish high school, they need to have plans. Without plans, they flounder. It’s the loving thing to do.

Serving Others

Adults and youth alike are attracted to the young man who goes out of his way to serve others. True greatness is found in serving. No parents challenge their children to be like Hitler, while thousands challenge their children to be like Jesus. The hallmark of Jesus was service to others. Peter said of Him, “He went about doing good.” Would you like for that to be said of your children? It all begins at home. If your children hear you ask, “What can I do to help you today?” They will learn to ask the same question. As they see you experience the satisfaction of serving, they will follow your model. Service will become a way of life and your children will bless the world.

Building Block Of Parent-Teen Relationship

The most important building block of parent-teen relationships is love! Most parents sincerely love their teenagers, but thousands of teens do not feel loved. For most parents, it is not a matter of sincerity, but rather lack of information on how to effectively communicate love. We are so concerned about the teens behavior that we often come across as condemning. And, the teen feels rejected. When you need to instruct a teenager, make sure you speak love before you give the instructions. Give affirmation before you give information. For example, “I really appreciate the energy you spent in washing your car. It looks nice. Now, let’s be sure to keep that shiny car below the speed limit; otherwise, it will be my car for the next two days.”

Loving Your Teen

You would be surprised to learn how many teens feel unloved by their parents. It’s not that the parents don’t love them. The problem is that the teen does not feel loved. When teenagers feel unloved, they are far more likely to become sexually active, start using drugs, and get involved in trouble with the law. The answer? Learn to speak the love language of your teenager. What are the five love languages? Words of affirmation, acts of service, gifts, quality time, and physical touch. Out of these five, your teen has a primary love language. If you speak it, your teen will feel loved, if you don’t the love tank will be empty. Much of the teens miss-behavior comes from an empty love tank.

How Can I Serve My Spouse Today?

Did you wake up this morning and ask yourself: “How can I serve my spouse today?” If you did, you probably live in a healthy family. Nothing stimulates a positive family atmosphere like an attitude of service. And, if you have it, it’s contagious. Your children will pick up on it and your spouse will begin to reciprocate. Everyone takes delight in serving. Jesus said, “Whoever will be great among you, let him be your servant.” Jesus set the example. We are His followers. Tonight, let your family report on ways in which they served others today. It will focus your family on what is important. Your family can impact the world for good, and it all begins with an attitude of service.

Learning To Serve

The most essential ingredient in a healthy family is learning to serve each other. Jesus said about Himself, “I did not come to be served, but to serve.” In a healthy family, that will be the attitude of the husband, the wife, and the children. Young children want to serve. What mother has not heard these words, “Mommy, can I help you?” If the child is allowed to help, and affirmed for helping he/she will develop an attitude of service. This attitude is fostered by the model of the parents. If the child hears the father ask his wife, “How may I help you?” And, hears the mother reciprocate, the child will learn that “serving others is important in our family.” Teach your children to serve and they are on the road to greatness.