10 Rules of Parenting NOT Found in Books
by Debi Chapman
We’ve all dreamed of a magical manual for parenting with step-by-step answers that deliver instant results. I’ve yet to find one – but here’s a few suggestions from real life experiences.
A child’s home is their entire world. Their emotional stability is largely dependent upon the atmosphere we set in our homes. Are your children restless and acting up?
Start with these 10 areas and see if there’s a change…
1} Mom and Dad’s relationship ~ Is there tension? Actions speak louder than words. Even a baby can take on restlessness when parents are at odds. The looks on our faces, tone of voice and even our breathing patterns signal security or instability to our little ones. Check this one off of your list. √
2} Conversation in their presence ~ We all have issues to discuss – but our kids don’t have the grace or emotional framework to process our conflict. Spare your children the pain of worrying over life’s circumstances. Protect them, especially if they’re under 10. Life is good!
3} Don’t let them see you sweat! ~ That’s what a prayer closet is for. Our kids deserve a childhood void of unnecessary stresses. Our burdens are not theirs to bear.
4} Put on a happy face ~Years ago, we lived in a rental house with a wall of mirrors. I’d whisk by in my busy-ness and get a glimpse of my face. Ugh! Even though we all have seasons of serious focus, our kids deserve better. Stop and smile. Better yet – practice smiling on purpose. This isn’t fake – it’s gracious to those around you.
5} Private phone conversations ~ Whether you’re negotiating a hospital bill or discussing a sensitive issue with your mother – spare your kids the pain of listening. Especially for audio learners – their mind is like a tape-recorder. The words go in and may not come out. I know! I AM one!
6} Get outside ~ Take your kids outside and let them dig, run and breathe! A few minutes out of doors can readjust a little one’s spirit and calm the mind.
7} Hug! ~ Give the man of your dreams a hug – right in front of everyone! Don’t wait for him to initiate. Tender touch is pleasant to the soul – even the souls of those little observers. They’ll smile – I guarantee! The kids may join for a ‘group hug’.
8} Music ~ Do you have music playing in your home? The sounds of life around them can stabilize their soul. Fill their hearts with quality music to develop their taste and warm their little hearts.
9} Lipstick ~ In the old days, women put on lipstick before Dad returned from work. The concept is timeless while the application has changed a bit. Maybe a fresh t-shirt, combed hair or just a smile to greet your children’s father when he arrives. They’ll get it.
10} Scripture ~ Our grown kids tell me it brought them comfort to see me read the word. They can trust a mom who trusts the Lord. Recalling God’s word when we walk along the way, lie down and rise up calms an anxious heart of any age. Deuteronomy 6:7
As a college student, Debi asked the Lord to send her to the front lines of ministry. Armed with a newfound devotion to Christ and a Child Development background, Debi married her college sweetheart. Together they began to dream of what a family could become.
Thirty-six years later, Tim and Debi have eleven children, six grandchildren, and lives filled with front-line battle scars and victories beyond measure.
Presently, Debi has a houseful of teenagers in DFW and three sons in college. Her desire is to leave footprints for those who follow, and impart grace to mothers of all ages. Debi blogs at www.debichapman.com, can be found on social media, and speaks when invited – but her favorite place on earth, is home.