Balancing Trust with Wisdom
It is typical for growing children to complain that their parents do not trust them. It’s actually often true because parents usually have good reasons not to trust their kids. Kids face a lot of temptations that they are not prepared to deal with on their own. They need parental guidance and experience in order to make good choices and gain their parents’ trust. This is not a trust based on who our children are but on our confidence that they will make good choices when questionable situations arise.
We have had these conversations with both of our children and, as they have shown trustworthiness and responsibility, we have broadened their boundaries. Responsibilities, as much as children complain about them at times, win children’s respect. Giving your children responsibilities shows them that you as their parents have confidence in them and trust in their abilities and character. Admittedly, often the oldest child grows up with more rigid guidelines, but we parents are learning as we go along too.
One of my girlfriends has just discovered that her middle child, a daughter, has been missing school for three weeks. She would come home after role call and do her schoolwork but would not tell her parents. After discovering the truth and investigating further, it appeared that the girl was skipping class because she was being bullied terribly at school. She was overwhelmed and did not know how to cope with this daily crisis.
Fight for Your Children
Children can be cruel, and it is incredibly difficult for a lot of children to deal with this kind of treatment on their own at school. In this situation, once mom and dad became aware of the problem, they were able to put some structures in place and help their daughter fight battles that were too big for her to fight alone. Children need their parents to parent: to stand and fight for them when the task is too large rather than to have them to fight alone.
Boundaries and instruction provide security. As much as a child loves to laugh and spend time with a fun mature person, in a dilemma they will find the people that can give them safe and reliable guidance. This should be their parents.