There has been a lot in the news lately about kids who have made incredibly poor choices. From fighting and bullying to neglecting others in need, the media has had a field day dragging the details of their behavior across the airwaves. I would love to shield my kids from those types of behaviors indefinitely, but that’s just not reality. They’re going to come up against things that make them question what they believe, struggle to make the right decisions, and test their courage.
So, I decided it was time to talk about some of the lessons I want them to learn.
Every day I see our sons turning into the compassionate, caring, strong young men I knew they could be. Since I can’t always be there to guide them in making the right decisions, I want to make sure they know a few things that will serve them well in life.
Lessons I want Our Sons to Learn
- Don’t Let Anyone Bully You Into Doing What’s Not Right
There are going to be times in your life when you encounter bullies. It’s hard to stand up to someone who is intimidating, I get that. But hear me clearly, if someone is telling you not to do something that you know is the right thing to do, you must stand up to them and do it anyway. You could save your life and someone else’s.
- Respect Goes Two Ways
If you want to be respected, you have to respect others. It’s really that simple. If you’re disrespectful, pushy, and rude, you won’t gain anyone’s respect. For others to respect you, you must be a person filled with integrity and kindness. I know you have that in you; don’t forget it when things get tough.
- Get Enough Sleep
When you’re a teenager, there are going to be plenty of times when I have to wake you up to go to school, so I get the irony of telling you to get enough sleep. Here’s the thing, sleep deprivation can impact your memory, attention span, ability to make decisions, reaction time, and more. It’s dangerous and, if you’re driving, can have deadly consequences. Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep each night – no matter how old you are.*
- Don’t Mistake Kindness for Weakness
People sometimes think that being kind or showing grace is weakness. Son, they’re wrong. Being kind, offering forgiveness (even when someone may not deserve it), and showing compassion are signs of great strength of character. Making those tough decisions in the face of adversity is when your strength truly shines through. Keep your heart open.
- Your Mom & I Will Always Love You
No matter where you go, no matter how old you are, no matter what you do, I will always love you. There will be times that I may not like your decisions, but I will stand by you. If you make bad choices and have to face the consequences, I will help you be brave enough to face them. When you just need someone to talk to, you can always come to me. You’re my son and I will always, always love you.
I hope these lessons help them. I want our sons to know that they will always have our support. They were born with a purpose that is theirs to figure out. We will be here to help them, however we can, to fulfill that dream & purpose.
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