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Raising Kids With Healthy Boundaries (Part 2 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
August 12, 2022 6:00 am

Raising Kids With Healthy Boundaries (Part 2 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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August 12, 2022 6:00 am

Psychologist and author Dr. Henry Cloud describes how parents can strengthen their children's character by teaching them to take responsibility for themselves. (Part 2 of 2)

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You don't make up a strategy on the battle. You know what general ever said okay let's go fight the war and we get out there will figure out what to do and that's not what you do what you do is you sit down.

First of all the generals sit down and they figure out what's the war were trundling here and what battles do we need to make sure what kind of valves are we not identify because that becomes an very important part of any strategy which are not connected will takes a lot of thought and effort and energy and time to be a good parent and we got a great program for you today Focus on the Family with Jim Daly feature that man there. Dr. Henry cloud as he helps us define appropriate boundaries in our parenting.

Thanks for joining us today.

I'm John Fuller, Johnny.

The last time I learned a lot as a dad on things I could do differently and I hope all of you did as well. If you didn't hear the program last time, get the download you smart phone app whatever you need to do order the CD and that list of the program because I think there are a lot of great nuggets of wisdom that Dr. cloud brought to the parenting effort. Today we want to turn back to his book boundaries with kids in Dr. John Townsend wrote that book a few years ago, but there are so many good things in there were in a talk about the law of motivation today and several of the other laws that they uncover their for us as parents so I'm looking forward to the time and Dr. cloud is been here a number of times he is a well-known author and speaker, and he's a psychologist who was really offering biblical insight. I think that's one of the things I really appreciate about him Jim. He integrates the Scripture and what he says here about. You definitely Henry welcome back to the progress good at it with you guys in and one of the reasons I love this topic with you guys were all in addition, we all have and gives it that these ages is fun. It makes it fun.

It's kind like an experiment right. I loved what you said is our parenting support group everybody can listen in this but but it is you said it so well. Parent said to me, every stage is been other than the one before. So when you have the toddlers I've enjoyed it. I've seen those things. There's there's work in each one. There's some things that are little more troubling, but by and large I'm looking forward to the next two years. I've got with my boys before they go off to do what they're going to do college or vocation, whatever they might do and that I want to help them in that phase of both of our lives in a strong way because I want to launch them in a way that they are ready to go for the Lord for their future spouses and for their roles. Fathers and it's great to have you here talk about that talk about it.

It it if we can keep that that citizen mine.

Parenting is always about future. It's hard to keep it in my heart skip my will but when you're talking about whether or not your kid know it has done their homework. It's not about the homework. It's about the IRS 20 years from the IRS is going to want to know do they do their homework right and so that's what you're trying to teach them not about the math and science. Well it's so true those habits that you want to see one of the difficulties and again we talked about this in a variety of ways. Last time is in developing those habits. How do we have the right throttle emotionally as the parent to lay down the law and help them live to it and then not be to overwhelming when it comes to their failures but to use them as moments to teach them. Jim just gave an entire course on systematic theology, not no seriously I wish we could go back and hear this because what you said is lay down the law and help them to use it to live up to it without killing them in some way.

You know becoming overbearing or something. Okay, so in that this is the whole message of the Bible, sick is what a lot of parents do is lay down the law and then what they do is they watch for the infractions and they spank the infractions or yell at the infractions of this and then I called it parenting what you said was you lay down the law and you help them to live up to it so that is not only the way the Bible says to do life the way God did with us.

It's also the way you run companies is the way you run families is the way you run every aspect of life that God gives us ways and standards doesn't give us ways and standards in then just punishes every time we break it. In fact, he realizes he gives us the ways and standards that are above our ability to do them. That's what growth is. But then he comes down any helps us to live up to them. So, parenting is about all of that. It's about figuring out what are the standards were trying to live up to and he or she are kids are going to need help to live up to those that's parenting the other way is the law. The just, you know is false is the law never works anyway just land on the law and you don't punish people for when they don't do it.

It never works.

They need help to get there. That is really interesting in your book boundaries with kids, you and then again I did not say don't have any rules you clarify. You can have too many roles, but you must have rosewood you to figure out is this rules do not build the capacity in the child to live up to the well, let's talk about how you do that because one of the laws in your book is the law of motivation and that motivation is to help them live up to the rule. So, talk about the law of motivation.

How do I get that little guy or gal that live up to the rules, the law of motivation motivate them. Okay, very interesting sentence. Had I get that logo live up to the rules. What if we just said this.

How do I get that little guy to get that little guide live up to the rules that's better because that's what we want right and so what we have to realize is basically that we we had to drive to Nash know we have we have a drive for pain. We have a draft for pleasure and their different things feel good to consider center know what we know is that in all of us. There is a certain drive for what feels good. That's not good.

In other words, it feels good for me to not do my homework right it feels good for me to not have consequences if I do something wrong. What the Bible tells us is all discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful.

But in the end it produces the peaceful fruit of righteousness. So the question becomes for parents retirement how to motivate them what what were really trying to do is were trying to tap into the motivation that God gave all of us, which is for a good life right for because our brains are wired to were supposed to enjoy life. We have pleasure centers and all this kind of stuff but what we've got to do is we gotta make sure that we organize the environment around them to where doing good things gets them a good life and doing bad things.

I really like the life I get when I do bad things because I go to Tyler purgatory for a while and that doesn't feel good. And so what were doing is we we are entering an interrelationship and we are going to prevent them from doing what feels good to them that will produce death and were going to give them a lot of options to do what is good for them that will produce life now notice and there what I'm talking about is I want them to learn to make the right choices that produce life or death in their own experience.

Here's one of the biggest flaws I see out there parenting today. This whole emphasis on redirection is a total parenting strategy. I see it all the time. If your kid is upset over here doing this just you know if they would if they want that toy give him another choice in the end there always look sometimes one of the best things that any of us have to learn is we have to learn to salute the word know and realize that sometimes I don't have an option that I want. Sometimes I don't know I'm not in control because they're going to go to work and in the bosses because they want you to do this and they're going to throw a temper tantrum and you think the bosses I all got for that is upset it will limit find something else. He likes it. No, it's not like that you know obviously we want choices in their diversions in different chores. You do this you do that, but you know what one of the most important gift you give your children is to learn to live within a limit and like it when my kids were little I remember it it the parent Tyler preschool.

We had a great song they taught the kids you know it was you get what you get and you don't get upset and they learn that and sometimes can I go to this know they got what you say. Well, you get what you get.

You can use it and it normalized. I don't get everything I want and we don't have enough of that today. I think that's interesting.

You know the other toddler environment will be, especially if you have two kids close in age, which we did and do is the that's mine. You know the tallest thing that's mine. And how do you engage that to say well you know what sometimes it is sometimes a stream that sometimes is not, sometimes it's not seek. That's the thing is, is the whole concept boundaries are better property line boundaries or property line. This is your yard.

This is my okay so yeah right.

That is yours okay know what you can't do is use lecturers to step over the property line bottle because of a trespass.

Now you stepped in my yard with your little hammer and you can't go take your hammer break out the windows in the kitchen. That's not okay this is your hammer. You can play in your yard and you can do whatever you want to. In this circle of boundaries, but you trespasses when you step over the line into somebody else's property and that's the basic concept that that God is always outlined that you know this is such nuts and bolts advice so appreciated and in and just scribble and make notes for myself.

I hope all of you are as well because again, this is the right stuff it when it comes to the parenting expectation what you need to be concentrating on limit is not easy either is not its work yet because what one of the biggest boundaries. It that I've discovered about parenting not only pillow work it bit me is the first boundary is to set some boundaries on my own anxiety because you know it. At every stage there are things that our kids are going to do and actually sometimes things that they need to do that make us anxious, you know, in some way, and in one of the worst things that we can do one of the worst things we can do is use our own anxiety as the value system of what were going to say yes or no to.

Sometimes we have to say okay I don't really feel good about this data needs a timeout to go think about this right now judges going to their chambers right.

They don't have to make decisions all all of the know and go think about this, and in sometimes I get often reflect nothing. You know this, worries me a little bit what I think about it and I really think about it.

This is because I can kill them and this is something that they need to go do and if they make the choices certain things if they don't, it won't, but this is I need to loosen up here and I need to do my own anxiety. Okay. At other times I have anxiety about that and that's a really good anxiety because why my friend this because a BNC which ABC should never happen and that's where you set a limit, but we know our God gave us senses and feelings in the book of Hebrews. It says this is his solid food is for the mature, and we would all say that parenting is his solid food right solid food is for the mature, who through practice have had their senses trained to discern good from evil. See, God gave us senses. He gave us this feeling are no I don't like that or this you know there's some SC this and I don't like and I have this uneasy. But those senses have to be trained and sometimes you know what good parenting is about is our training our sensibilities in our senses and our insights and all this to sometimes we have to put off some of the patterns that were ingrained in us from the traditions of the elders. Jesus talked often about the traditions of the elders are not the ways of God and we can get things from our own dysfunctional families you know and I'll finesse an audience who came from a dysfunctional family and everybody's hand. Hello, we all did. Because raw from the family of Adam right from Adams family can remember. He has eyes like and so we've inherited this and and God tells us look you inherited ways, generational patterns that are not good and you must in this is something that we don't often hear about God told the people you know. Confess the sins of your father's intern from them.

So if I was parented in certain ways are good. I want to carry that forward, but sometimes have to ask myself what fit a different time or what was actually just wrong. That was not good that I've got to be the generation that breaks that, and that's one of the key things to parenting before we ever go into the parenting thing. We need our own training Yeltsin the soldier off to war without going to boot camp in training and we got to get our own senses and our own our own issues. First, the best parents are the ones of know their own issues, so they don't passable well that's where the resources and tools from your efforts and John Townsend in Focus on the Family. That's where were all trying to help.

I think in this area. Parenting and it's a privilege to be able to do it. Let me get to a specific again in the book you warned parents not to.

As an example of what not to do.

Not to over identify with our child's pain.

I mean I think that's one of the big issues today owe Ashley for moms not to pick on moms but moms have such nurturing spirits and then you can identify with your child.

You don't want to talk about the danger of that in the book we have much laws apparent in height and one of them is the law of evaluation of pain and it goes like this. Just because someone's screaming doesn't mean that something bad is happening and what that means is that in parenting. Sometimes you are going to set some limits or you're going to have to push them to do something or you're going to require something and you're going to get some screaming and it can be in the passive version of that tears and pain and woundedness and soul. In this and all this kind of stuff, and in the aggressive version of that it can be anger and pushback. And you know kind of fighting both of them have to do with that a kid is learning a very important lesson their learning.

I'm not in control of the universe that something that you want them to know for their bosses for their spouses for the traffic laws for a bunch of stuff that they aren't God. Now when you do that they are going to not like it okay, but that doesn't mean something bad is happening when you push them to do so. I had a an example of this. Recently my my youngest daughter Lucy signed up for camp in and she's been the And a lot of times, but she does have a little thing sometimes and looking for things that are out there in and a lot of separateness is to be away from home and not she should get a little anxious and then she found out about camp that there was going to be no one there in her grade as a church camp and there were going to be no eighth-graders. There were all going to be either seventh graders Northridge, which meant she didn't have any friends. She is a go to camp with a bunch of strangers. And when she first found that out. It was total meltdown. She did want to go out and I'm not going I'm not going I'm not going all this so you know when the car because it found out a church and is just drama and you and always comes to its out just that when we specify now because you didn't scare you know just can empathize with it in didn't didn't do anything but just know will will go think about it you know will know you can't know what we know. I know it's upsetting to worry a thing that is so, so I don't do it then, but I already know she's going to camp and the reason she's going to camp is because I want her to have to learn to go to situations that are unfamiliar and to use her skills to make friends and to learn how to cope with that right she's going to do this, so there was an outcome you were looking there is an outcome I was looking for now. What I did was gonna have to you know you do this in stages right and what you don't like to get that across her when she's freaking out and Oliver drama, but ultimately thrall the discussions you know what I told her was a said lose. I understand you don't want to go and it is going to scare you, you know it's going to be going to be sort of scary. But I also know this. You know what if you were unable to make friends and people didn't like you in your walk and so was this can be awful's last thing I would do is to send you into it but actually I believe that you can do this because you always do. And I know it scares you, but I think you're going to have a great time and what I want to do is I want you to go and I want you to make a bunch of friends in which you have a great time and when you come back here and tell me how that went, and ultimately, I mean she had to adapt to the limit. But you pay for. You signed up you don't so sometimes we have to. And she did not like it, especially in the beginning but we got there and as what this is interesting as we were praying about it. She gets an email from one of the counselors at the camp that said Lucy I just saw your name is going to be in my cabin and I can't wait to do the music studio thing with you that we did last year and all of a sudden you know God provided a way so she got more interesting and she got little little more interested. But the point was I knew my job was to push her into discomfort and not allow the regression and parents have two things you have to guard against one is your children are winning and can want to do things they're not ready for don't give a cop a toddler.

The keys to the car okay you know they want to drive so were to guard them from their omnipotence, where they want to have more control than they should have, but the other thing is we gotta guard them from their regression because each new step is going to be anxious and we gotta put a limit behind them so they can't go backwards and they have to go forward to learn the next ability. And that's distressing to kids when it's true it is. The example is a simple example, but I remember when Trent was probably five I signed him up for T-ball for the first time so he's my firstborn son.

I'm thinking okay this is that the beginning of the sports dad activities. So we go and no balls are gone by uses, looking around he doesn't want to go to all and I notice he just has zero interest in this. It's not that he was being defined everything he does, didn't want to be there and that so I can looked at him. I said would you rather go get a chocolate shake and he's like yeah, let's go do that and so you know we went and did that. He's never had an interest in in baseball.

He did pick up football and basketball but I felt like I didn't want to push and write regard.

Well, let me say so… Because here's the principle what you want is you want to kid that is an involved kid in life. Okay baseball not might not be life-giving to him. But I want music is. Or maybe basketball is now if he were the kind kid that I'm I do need the news was little guilt for the rest my life. That's not okay right you want to that you know we would limit the not doing anything but they should have choices, just the way that God gives us choices that go with our makeup and giftedness and all that they should have have choices to be go do that. What were not going to allow is a disengagement from life.

We are going allow is exactly what proverb says a person's path comes from their heart and God directs their steps. So in your heart. There is his path and one kid loves this and they don't like this now in the beginning just like vegetables. What I want to do is I want to expose him to hold menu and then see what they like, what you can't do is not eat anything but you do get to choose. You know whether you want to block the green being sometimes so so it it's both and is not either or not it's really good and you know were at the end I think. Again, people can see the value of this tool.

This resource boundaries with kids. You've done a great job of identifying the core things that parents need to be mindful of and worked on and folks guess what, yet parenting is a job that's work with things I one more thing about that identifying with the pain. You know it's not just that we require them to do something it's hard for them and not have empathy for that. It's hard because you said some earlier look I'm in a require her to go to camp. In this instance, but I'm not to be harsh as I shut up you gotta do it.

I don't talk about anymore will revenue is going to require it and have empathy for how hard it is heard say okay so let's get a plan.

What can you do when you get there. How can I help you and and so were building the ability to perform the law that were requiring. And that's the difference God gives us the law, but he gives us the ability and the power and the body and the help and the strengthening to get there yet.

It's a very good point. Let let's end with this one. I'm sure there's a parent who's listening who feels that maybe it's too late. There in the 15 1617-year-old stage and they just have never heard this, they haven't thought of. About it. These are new concepts for them and their feeling like the relationship with their teenagers already so wounded, so brittle that they don't even know if there's hope to speak to that parent directly about what they can do to begin to change that ship even though they may only have a year or two years left. Well get some really good news for you and the good news is that you used to hear things both from scientists and psychologists as well as you know from the laypersons and and and is sort of like well it's set in its formed early and wants is formed, you can change right this character thing in all this. Brain research has come up with a term for the Bible I think refers to sanctification and there is always growth in in and what we know is that it any age. New patterns conform is called neural plasticity and that it any age we can change because if there is life brought to something if you take a plan that's wilted and you take a plant that is as long as it's not dead and you start to water it and you start to fertilize it and you start to do what it needs, what will you see, you will see growth. So, enter into your child's world and here's the other concepts which are unified in that €15 where you feel like it's too late is development gets arrested, so you might find some toddler maturity and that 15-year-old and you might need to realize. Gosh, you know, sometimes I'm not dealing with a 15-year-old I'm dealing with somebody much younger and that it is a €15 costume on, but I've got to understand that Anna got appropriately do with them what they need in the moment. Well that is really good stuff Dr. Henry cloud author the book boundaries with kids. I think every parent should have this in their arsenal. Thanks.

Always good to be with you as God bless what you did what and formative helpful conversation than me a lot to think about. In my role as a dad and if you feel the same. Get a copy of this excellent book boundaries with kids, which covers the 10 boundaries that your kids need most to become healthy adults, but we couldn't cover all of the content in our conversation the past couple days John. This was one of those eye-opening and important conversations. It's so vital for us to remember his parents. The impact we have on our children. We may not want to look like the bad guy by implementing strict boundaries with her children but sometimes boundaries are necessary to help guide them on their way to becoming godly responsible adults and we hope you'll request a copy of this book and would love to get it in your hands if you make a monthly pledge that really helps us out here focus to do ministry together.

But one time gift is also appreciated and in either case will send you a copy of the book as our way of saying thank you, when you make that contribution yet donate today. As you can and I request a copy of the book boundaries with kids phone number 800 K in the work-family show notes have all the details on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team. Thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family I'm John Fuller inviting back as we once more help you and your family thrive in Christ. I was shocked when she gave me the divorce papers. I was so died I had reached my breaking point.

I was desperate for a shred of hope. So I called the hope restored team at Focus on the Family they they listen to me and they asked about what was happening in my marriage. They encouraged me and my wife to attend one of their marriage intensive's for couples in crisis and they prayed with us. They help me believe that my marriage could be saved agreed to go but was skeptical that anything could help us but the whole environment was so safe and nonjudgmental, high-tech and open up as we went with the counselors. Both of us still have work to do in her marriage but for the first time in a long time we have hope again Focus on the Family's hope restored marriage intensive program has helped thousands of couples who thought that their marriage went over find out which program is right for you and hope

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