We get questions all the time about when a parent should allow a child to experience certain freedoms such as having a smartphone, going to parties, or dating. The answer is not clear cut, because all children mature differently. How is a parent to know what to do?
The analogy that we use a lot is teaching a child to swim. When kids are young and aren’t familiar with the water, you keep them close. As they learn you let them go a bit farther. The ultimate goal is that you are standing on the shore, watching them swim alone. When kids are young, it’s our job to protect their innocence. But as they grow, we need to help them build Christian maturity. Through this process of forming them in virtue, parents learn when to give children the chance to try and sometimes to fail.
We think it’s wise for parents to teach children how to handle certain freedoms when they are under your roof. Then you can be there as a trusted guide to help them navigate the turbulent and occasionally confusing waters of young adulthood.
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