Home / News / My mother-in-law challenges Christian-based parenting concepts – Chicago Tribune

My mother-in-law challenges Christian-based parenting concepts – Chicago Tribune

Dear Amy: I am the mother of a young teenager. I worked hard to develop a sense of trust and responsibility.

I asked my teenager to be open with me about the good or bad actions of her friends and acquaintances, and in exchange for their honesty, I promised not to “snitch” unless a friend was in a serious situation (threats, for example). suicide, hard drugs, guns, pregnancy, etc.).

Recently my teenage child shared with me that some of her friends have started vaping, experimenting with marijuana, and sometimes receiving sexually explicit material from other teenagers (or people pretending to be teenagers, I guess).

I am grateful that my child is open with me.

However, I never expected that my plea for honesty would yield so many credible examples of “good” kids doing bad things, including possibly falling victim to sextortion.

I want to run to these parents and tell them what happened, but I don’t want to break my trust in my child and turn that child into a “snitch” in the minds of the local youth.

Can you help me navigate a path that allows me to share what I’ve learned with parents without making my child the bad guy and breaking my trust in my child?

– Torn in CA

Dear Torn: What your child has told you so far is normal for many teens who experiment, push boundaries, and try things they know they absolutely shouldn’t. They are surrounded by messages that they should not vape, smoke, drink alcohol or use marijuana. And yet the “good kids” do these things.

So far “suicide threats, hard drugs, guns, pregnancy, etc.” You haven’t received any reports of it and so I don’t see any need for you to panic and warn other parents.

If your child is overly concerned about a particular person going down an extremely risky path, you should contact that child’s parents. You are the adult. This is a judgment call you must make.

The only issue you mention that has a concerning and long-term downside is the sharing, receiving or providing of sexually explicit photographs. These photos truly live forever. It is the concept of “forever” that expands the cognitive capacity of a typical teenager. They think they’ll live forever, but they can’t imagine their *** photos will live forever, even if they’re delivered and received through apps that promise quick deletion.

I encourage you to raise valid concerns about this matter to the school counselor without needing to provide details.

Schools must take it upon themselves to educate their students about the risks and negative consequences of sending or sharing sexually explicit photos, even among friends or romantic partners. This is a re-emphasis on the lessons and concerns you will discuss honestly with your child at home.

Dear Amy: My in-laws are good people, but they are very religious and tend to filter everything by their own religious beliefs.

My wife and I had our first child (their first grandchild). My wife and I are in agreement about our parenting choices and believe we are doing well. But their parents like to give us Christian-based parenting concepts they picked up on their YouTube channel.

I really love them but I want to prevent this. We do not intend to raise our child in their evangelical church.

What do you suggest?

– Curious Parents

Dear Wonder: Jesus may have walked on water, but he never had to try to guide a toddler through the grocery store.

Depending on the frequency of these suggestions and how they are communicated, it may be wisest to ignore them. Don’t click, don’t watch, don’t read.

If your mother-in-law asks you and your spouse about these sources, you can both honestly state that you do not follow these sources.

Your wife is probably the best person to communicate to her parents that you will not be raising your child in their church. It is your right and duty to raise your child according to your own values.

Dear Amy: “I wonder,” reports that relatives took some of my grandmother’s belongings before the inheritance was settled.

Years ago, my mother gave her children and grandchildren a pack of post-it notes.

After he left, we put sticky notes on the items we wanted to buy. Resolved all kinds of disputes.

There are sticky notes everywhere but hopefully there will be no arguments afterwards.

– No Sticky Fingers

Dear Thumbless: My mother is a smart person.

(You can email Amy Dickinson at askamy@amydickinson.com or write to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or on Facebook.)

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