5 Principles of Building a strong friendship with your children

One of many moments of giggling and being friends

  1. Time and Availability Whatever the age, children develop better when they know I will make our time together a priority. People grow close not through monitoring one another’s behavior but by working together, playing together, talking together, celebrating together, weeping together. Relationships develop when people are there for each other—and that’s as true for parents and children as it is for anyone else.
  2. Acceptance and Unconditional LoveIn building meaningful relationships with my children, I must learn to accept unconditionally the person God made each of them to be—even with personality traits that differ from mine or that make me uncomfortable. I need to accept the “warts” and irritating characteristics that may never change. I have to love my children with a mature commitment that reaches past my feelings for them, which can change from circumstance to circumstance.
  3. Affirmation and EncouragementI believe most children are acutely aware of their limitations and their failures. While they often need correction for their mistakes and even confrontation for their sinful selfishness, they also need recognition for their real efforts and accomplishments and positive reminders of who they can be with God’s help.
  4. GraceOur children need us to give them the grace to grow. If we make them think that we expect perfection, then eventually they may give up trying to please us, because they know they will always fail, or they may spend their whole lives feeling guilty for their failures.
  5. Relationship TrainingWe need to consciously train our children in the skills and attitudes that will enable them to sustain positive relationships. A person can only experience true intimacy when his heart has been deepened and exercised in real love and commitment.From Mission of Motherhood by Sally Clarkson  :)

For more on A Mom--A Strong Friend go to Momheart.org today--lots of good stuff there! And a video from me!