How important are your children’s friends? How much influence do you think they have in their lives? As our children grow into teenagers and young adults, the friends that they select to spend their time, their life, with are the ones that will inevitably shape who your child becomes in these growing years. We hear it every day from families that call the PAYH looking for help for their child, “My son is a good kid. He just got involved with the wrong group of friends.” It is a sad story and one with dire consequences.
What can you do to help guide your child into creating friendships that will benefit him rather than harm him?
- Know your child. Know his likes and dislikes. Know what motivates him. Know what discourages him.
- Actively develop a relationship with your child. If you want to have any say in who your child’s friends are, you must first invest in your relationship with your child. Create an open and safe place for them to be able to come to you when they need to.
- Encourage your child to make wise decisions when making friends. Be his eyes and ears.
- Know your child’s friends. Get to know them and allow your home to be the place that they want to hang out.
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