A couple of years ago, a parenting expert spoke at a training seminar at St. Michael Catholic Church in Wheaton. The statement was about communication between parents and children. The statistics were flooring!
What this person stated for a fact is that parents of today communicate – really communicate – with their children for 20 minutes PER WEEK!! At the time many people present thought this was hard to believe.
If you look around you, though, take a look at all of the other ‘important’ things there are in our lives that prevent us from creatively pursuing the most important position that we will ever hold – being a mom or a dad! The choices are many but none of them should even be in the realm of consideration when it comes to family and family time.
Sports are one of the biggies that distract families away from one another. Colleges have the right idea by encouraging kids to be diverse and to pursue many avenues, but this should never be at the expense of spending time together as a family. The adults driving these programs should understand family better than anyone, because most coaches have a family that they tend to put on the back burner in order to be a suitable coach.
It is understandable when some people will take advantage of a system and want to play but never show up for practices. It is another thing altogether when a kid is going to see family for a weekend one time per season. That kid should not have his or her position replaced simply because family is more important. Family should always be a viable excuse – as long as it is not just an excuse.
Parents, if you want your children to be successful, you must put your foot down, set a good example and do everything that you can keep your family unit on track by being ‘present’ in their lives. If you continually choose someone or something over your children, you may as well step back as a parent, because something else will surely take your place.
How hard is it really to get involved and stay involved in your child’s life? There are so many things to think about and to discuss with your child. Set aside some time to relax – and just be together.
When you take the time, you will be rewarded over and over again. Having children at home to care for may seem like it takes a lifetime when you are in the throes of it, but childhood is fleeting. Don’t blink or it will be gone!