Parenting that addresses emotional ‘sins’

A few commenters asked me to give some advice on how to avoid the emotional ‘sins’ described in this post.

Easier to point out a problem than provide a solution, isn’t it?

Here are a couple of thoughts - but please give your own suggestions:

  1. Set an example in your own life - these aren’t just ‘sins’ that kids commit, are they?!

  2. Call them out when you see them. Develop some of those infuriating parental slogans that drill into their heads what is wrong with these ways of responding.

  3. Figure out the opposites and celebrate them when you see them: “Well done for telling us clearly how that you are feeling crabby!”

  4. Deliberately provide a running commentary on your own emotional life, and their emotional life, to help them become more emotionally intelligent: “Can I explain to you what might be going on here?”

  5. Do character studies of TV shows and movies and books - both Franklin and Arthur are character-rich programs that seem deliberately designed to assist with this.

  6. Explore their hurtful behaviour of friends/family/teachers through this grid, where relevant. An upside to this is that it helps kids show sympathy to those who have unfairly hurt them.

  7. Not in the heat of the moment, but in preventative contexts, talk to them about these matters and unpack what is wrong about them.

  8. Explore the personal, practical, ethical and spiritual reasons why these are so bad.

  9. Talk often about God’s sovereignty over all things and build a spirituality that embraces all the ‘givens’ of life: our context, limitations, sufferings, feelings, as gifts/tests from God that can be joyfully received from his hand.

  10. Model prayer when in the midst of the kind of emotional turmoil that sometimes leads to these ‘sins’.

via Blog - Christian Reflections (NB: to comment go to