Some common responses that are typical when you actually lean in to listen.
- I don’t know?
- When do we get do what I want to do again.
- Where does water come from? (Fresh water)
- When can I get more money?
- Why do you always have to come home late?
- What happens when you die?
- When are you going to bring me lunch at school?
- How many days until Christmas?
- How do seasons occur?
- Can you leave the light on?
- Can you leave the music on?
- How does electricity work?
- Where does lightening come from and thunder?
- Which one comes first again?
- When can I have another sleepover?
- When can I get more V-bucks?
- Where’s Mom or Dad?
- Why can’t I just change schools or go back to my old one?
- Why when you cut a pumpkin it rots and if it’s not cut it last such a long time? (It protects a gift trapped on the inside)
- Can I watch one more show?
- Can I build another project?
- Why is that man living under a bridge? Can we help?
- Where do babies come from? No seriously.
- Why do we have to leave?
- Will I grow out of this?
- When can I get a phone?
- Where did grandma go? Is she in heaven? Can I go with her?
- Why do I have to go to bed?
- Why do I get so scared, I can’t even raise my hand to use the bathroom?
- Why don’t I have any friends?
- Why can’t you just live in the same house, like before?
- Can I have more cake?
- Why does Dad have to move? That means I have two rooms?
- When or why will I ever need to use 5 > x+2/3 ?
- Are we there yet?
- Is Santa Clause real?
- What does blood do?
- Do you think there is life on other planets?
- Can I have a ……………….?
- What are angels?
- What do I do if I am in trouble?
- How can I get rich?
- Why do I need to go to school?
- Why are my eyes blue?
How many of these can we effectively answer as parents? Answering these and many other questions are essential as our kids grow. Keeping them directed on the right paths is essential to who they become because learning truly begins at home.
We should avoid going the way of what do you think? When a child has questions about the fundamental questions about who they are, where they come from, what can I do, and why are we here, what do you believe, and many more questions like these. Kids tend to get very confused when they don’t know what to believe, with so many families moving away from Sunday school, stories about their family history and other general discussion that can help ground a child in the values that are needed. I am aware of the need to allow them to explore but I wanted to make you aware that the exploration we once knew can prove to be difficult when we have chosen to exclude the same beliefs we received. There is simply to much variance that may conflict with what you truly believe even though you were raised traditionally and now prefer a more open system. This can be hard for kids when they enter school and the social dynamics have changed along with many other factors that lead to greater fears.
As parents, you are leaving things to chance when you don’t secure the safety nets that you have but sometimes ignore. Imagine what you would do when tragedy strikes, like the lost of a job, a parent, a sibling, a home, a limb, eyesight and so many tragedies too difficult to imagine. Now, imagine what kids do when tragedy comes to their life? I know, most parents would say they will be there to assist with those questions. Well, most families work and have little time to help with all that goes on in the world of a child at school, on social media, in relationships, if they do bad on a test, or anxious for a test, when they are offered a drug that almost the whole class tried. Kids become extremely lost and frightened, with no sense of which way is up, as if it was as serious as an adult tragedy. I am sure there are countless arguments to these points I have made but take it from a person who understands a bit about behavior. For many of these stresses our bodies don’t know the difference and is only waiting for the mind to pull from things it knows. Things like who is truly the Source of all things?
Hopefully this helps someone to understand where all the anxiety we see in our youth today comes from. Their identity is tested and hammered daily, their sense of security is questions from the moment they leave the home and even in it when they cannot even close their eyes to sleep due to fear.
My plea is to listen closely and be intensional about your beliefs. Imagine that if we cannot share what grounds us then we may need some assistance with our own foundation that can be tested as we grow. To be Man, both Male and Female is to become! I can only share who anchors me in my darkest hour and it’s the name above all others. Jesus! With all the love, joy peace and forgiveness no one can manufacture or sell.
Kidstrive for belief of who they are and the values they hold to be anchored in truth. Especially in the things that we cannot see.