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Giving Adult Children Money: Helping, Hindering, or Hurting?

In Child Development, Choice, Families, Family Planning, father, Grandparents, Marriage, Parental Rights, Parenting, The Family, Values on August 27, 2015 at 9:41 am

money 3by Rebecca Mallory

When is it a good idea to lend adult children money? As young marrieds, we never had money. There was a time when we had three small kids and were working four jobs between us. We borrowed $5,000 from my husband’s parents for a down payment on a house and eventually paid it back. But we never even thought about borrowing another dime from parents or family. Let me just say up front, that I am no expert on this subject. All I know is what I’ve experienced and heard from close family members, and friends. There are countless books and lectures dedicated to this sticky little family subject that might give you much better advice on the subject of money and adult children. However, you may find these examples helpful.

When my husband and I got married we were beyond dirt poor. Though we both had college degrees, we had no real job and scraped by. I was working part time for an orthodontist, and he was working at Wendy’s. Several months later we wanted to surprise his parents and go to their home in San Diego for Thanksgiving but Dave couldn’t get off work. We went anyway. By now I was 6 months pregnant. When we got back home Dave had been fired. Duh… Really? What did you think would happen? I’m sure his parents were indeed “surprised” to realize how irresponsible their kids were to make such a dumb move. He eventually got another job which turned out to be a blessing and the beginning of his 33+ year career. Still, it was a dumb move.

Fast forward to today where we’ve learned some difficult life lessons but are in a much better financial position.  So a few years ago, we decided that any extra money we had would be used to help our kids rather than having fancy cars, travel, etc. We’ve “helped” all four of them to some extent with interesting results. If we could rewind, we probably would not have made that choice. It’s been more stressful than we would ever have guessed. It’s a subject that I have discussed with many “empty nesters” recently. How do you handle money with your adult children? Especially married children?  Their answers have been telling. I’ll relate a few cases to you and let you make up your own mind. Perhaps you have your own story?

Couple #1: “We have three married daughters and one son with families of their own. I don’t know about your family, but sometimes we don’t think alike! We do things differently and have different expectations. Nothing is so glaring as when it comes to money. Lending our kids money has put a strain on our relationship because we both “assumed” that we had the same intent and goals. Not so! We don’t know if we’ll ever see that money again which also puts a strain on our marriage. We just thought our kids would respect us enough to see that we need it back as soon as possible. They think we’re thoughtless and stingy. It really hurts.”

Couple #2: “We offered to co-sign on a house for our kids. It was right after the big foreclosure fiasco and knew that they wouldn’t be able to qualify for a loan without us. Why did we feel it our job to “fix” their problem? If you can’t afford it, you can’t afford it. We would never have thought to go to our parents to help us with a house that we couldn’t afford on our own! They were grateful but seemed entitled to our money. They even alluded to the fact that they would have to live with us if we didn’t help them. We want them to have independence! Did we make the right move or are we just enabling them?”

Couple #3:  “We borrowed money from our parents when we bought our first house. It took us ten years to pay it back but we did. It felt so good to pay off that debt. So we lent money to our newly married kids, assuming fully, that they would pay us back. First mistake. They were shocked that we would expect them to pay us back. It’s been eye-opening to realize the different expectations. Reactions have been varied. From a “you owe it to us” attitude or “you can afford it so just give it to us” to a real extreme of ” you need to give us X per month” with no explanation of where that money is going and no accountability. It was shocking and hurtful. They told us that they were hurt and don’t want to see us. We haven’t spoken to them for two months and they live a mile away from us.”

Couple #4:  “We’ve given our newlyweds so much money that we’ve lost count. They just expect it now. Have we helped or hindered their success? It’s caused problems with our relationship with them and between my wife and me. I’m truly sick of it but don’t know how to stop for fear that they won’t let us see the grandchildren if we rock the boat in any way. We feel totally trapped.”

Couple #5: “Our situation is easy. We just don’t have it. Our kids have had to plain figure it out for themselves. Some did, some didn’t. It’s not our problem though. We honestly couldn’t help them financially. We just told each of the kids that we’d pray for them and hope for the best. Guess what? The ones who truly wanted to figured it out did, because they had to. It was often painful to admit that we flat out couldn’t help them. But as heart-wrenching as that was at the time, to see the lessons they’ve learned through hard knocks and struggles, has been rewarding in and of itself. Why did we try to protect them from those life lessons?”

Each of these couples have learned hard lessons with married children. If you listen to
Dave Ramsey or any other financial guru, I’m sure that in most cases they suggest to refrain from lending money to your adult kids. Obviously, there are extenuating circumstances but if you’re like me, YOURS are always the extenuating ones, right? It’s painful to watch your children struggle and suffer. Especially when they have little kids of their own. Sometimes I would like a “do over” with my kids which isn’t possible. But we’re all here learning together through the successes and the failures. Giving your children autonomy over their own lives seems to be a priceless way to handle sticky situations including money. There are no right or wrong answers. Only the ones that works for you. I would love to hear your take.

Speak Up for Family and Life

In Abortion, Abstinence, Child Development, Choice, Diane Robertson, Divorce, Families, father, Free Speech, Freedom, Marriage, Media, Parenting, Planned Parenthood, Prostitution, Sanctity of Life, Sexual Freedom, Technology, The Family, Values on August 26, 2015 at 8:47 am

Ashley Madisonby Diane Robertson

There’s this infamous company in Canada, Ashley Madison, which hosts a purportedly secret online dating service for people who are married or in a committed relationship. The company’s slogan is “Life is short. Have an affair.” Customers pay Ashley Madison to help them have extra marital affairs and one night stands.

On July 15th of this year hackers stole the company’s “secret” customer data—including email addresses, names, home addresses, sexual fantasies and credit card information. At the time, Hackers said they would release the information to the public if Ashley Madison did not permanently shut down. On July 22nd, the company released just the first names of the customers. When the company did not comply with the demands of the hackers, they released all of the information on Aug 18th.

The fall out has been huge with ordinary people to celebrities such as Josh Duggar being outed for cheating on their spouses.

The Toronto police department even reported that two people committed suicide because they were outed by the hackers. The Toronto police department blamed the hackers stating this would “not be tolerated”.

Normally, I agree that hacking is wrong. It’s typically used to gain access to personal information for financial gains. I feel like this situation is different. I agree with the hackers that the company is abominable. They make money while facilitating the breakup of marriages and families. I think justice has been served.

Most people are standing by the fact that hacking is illegal, and that what these hackers did was wrong because they have ruined millions of lives. I agree that hacking is illegal and should be. But I do not believe the hackers are responsible for ruining the lives of the adulterers. Rather, those committing adultery are responsible for ruining their own lives. They made conscious choices to do something they were very aware would harm their spouse, their children, and ultimately themselves.

I am going to speak as a Christian in an appeal to other Christians. I believe that as Christians it is imperative for us to recognize what is wrong and damaging to families and to society and call it out. We need to make judgments so that we can understand what is good and what is bad. Sadly, as a society we have been bullied into a place where we won’t say something is right or wrong because it might hurt someone’s feelings. We cower at the being called names, and our unwillingness to face the criticism of those calling us judgmental or bigoted or hateful has led to a whole host of societal ills.

Ashley Madison would not exist if there weren’t enough corrupt people willing to pay for it. Companies can only exist if there is enough of a market to be profitable. Along the same lines, Planned Parenthood and abortion clinics wouldn’t exist if there weren’t so many mothers and fathers willing to sacrifice the very life of their children for the sake of lust and convenience.

I look around me and see that as a society we have given our compassion to the people selfishly destroying life and family instead of those who have had their lives and families destroyed. The people who need our compassion are the husbands and wives whose marriages have been shattered by infidelity, the sons and daughters who are left without a mother or a father because of the resulting divorce, and the babies that never breathed because their parents did not want them.

Just 60 years ago, compassion was given to the real victims and as a result more people considered the consequences before breaking apart their families or taking the lives of their unborn children. The pressure to live a chaste life meant that life and family were cherished. Now, individual choice is cherished, and life and family are discarded.

To Christians, I say, make a choice. Is what we say and how we judge saving lives and strengthening families, or is it promoting (quietly or openly) the destruction of life and the breakdown of families? Those who hacked into the Ashley Madison website, may have committed a crime, but they also made an important statement about marriage and family. They stood up for love and fidelity. We can to, and we don’t even need to break the law to do so. We just need to speak.

Take the Gender Out of Toys, Not Out of People

In Child Development, Choice, Families, father, Free Speech, Freedom, Gender, Gender Identity, Homosexuality, Parenting, Religion, Sexual Orientation, Values on August 25, 2015 at 7:00 am

IMG_0103by Annalise Jarman

Surprised as many of you might be, I actually think Target’s move to take gender labels out of their toy aisles is positive news. Of course gender is important. Of course the current push to live in denial about gender differences is harmful to individuals as well as families. Rigid gender stereotypes, however, can also be quite harmful.

Gender is more of a book than a box. Understanding gender helps us greatly to understand ourselves. It helps me understand why I have to deal with so many emotional roller coasters — horror-mones, as I sometimes call them. It also helps me understand why, try as I may, I still can’t run as fast as so many boys. Even on my high school cross-country team, as one of the top female runners, I was only as fast as some of the slower Junior Varsity boys.

Gender isn’t a box, though, and treating it like an exact box can also be confusing. Traditional gender lines certainly haven’t been successful at telling me everything about myself. For example, I’m good at spatial reasoning, and I struggle with multi-tasking. I enjoy rock climbing and woodworking. Until I had a baby, I never cried during movies. Not even when Simba’s dad died in The Lion King. All my friends cried at that part. I felt depressed, for about three days, but never cried. At the same time, I love a good pedicure and working on crafts.

Luckily I grew up in a family where this was all ok. I didn’t have to be a girly-girl, but could be if I wanted to be. Whatever my interests, I was still a girl and I was still ok. My parents helped me see this as they kept to the general gender roles at home but were not too rigid regarding what was acceptable for boys to do and what was ok for girls. My mom was a mom in every sense of the word. We were lucky enough to have her at home. She cared for and nurtured the family. My dad was the bread-winner and was good at teaching us discipline. But he also helped a lot with the laundry and the dishes. My mom also mowed the lawn and built some furniture for our home.

Katie Goldman and Layla Murphy (the Star Wars girls) are also lucky to have supportive families who aren’t too fearful about crossing a few gender lines. If you have seen their pictures, you know they are adorable girls, both of whom could easily pass as the next Princess Leia. Crossing the line over to the boys’ section for Star Wars action figures hasn’t made them boyish at all. They have the freedom to enjoy their hobbies and be girls too.

Those who grow up pressured to fit into a more rigid, boxy view of gender lines are not as lucky. People in these environments like to assume other things about those who cross gender lines, merely for the sake of their hobbies, that aren’t actually related to the hobbies at all. This is something I started to notice when I was about twelve, and I’ll be honest: I’ve always felt it was a little dysfunctional.

It was a conversation with my older brother’s girlfriend that struck me as odd. She was telling me about one of her guy-friends who told her that he liked interior design, cake decorating, and activities of that sort. She laughed as she said, “I told him, ‘Dude, you’re gay!’ And he said, ‘No, I’m not’, but I said, ‘Yes, you totally are! You have to be.’”

At the time I’m sure I just looked a bit confused. But as I grew older, I kept wondering, why does he have to be gay to like feminine pastimes? What if he isn’t gay, and wants to date women? Would he have to give up his hobbies for women to take him seriously in the dating scene?

No one has ever given me grief about my affinity for rock climbing, or wood working. When I took an Auto class in high school, people saw that as cool, not weird. No one told me I must be a lesbian. Can’t a man similarly like interior design and women? What do hobbies and sexual orientation have to do with each other anyways?

I thought about this even more as I learned that one of my husband’s friends decided he was gay. We had been on a double-date with him when we were first dating, and he wasn’t effeminate at all. Later, we watched him perform in a play, and then after we were engaged he said he’d be happy to make our wedding cake for us. We took him up on it, and he did a nice job. A guy who likes to participate in community plays and make wedding cakes. Cool. I was still surprised when he announced on Facebook that he was gay. Honestly, since his announcement he has seemed so miserable, despite all the love and support he gets from friends and family. It is possible that he just feels torn between his newly-chosen lifestyle and his family’s religion. I have to wonder, though, if maybe he’s not actually gay. Is it possible that he was pressured into believing he was gay because of his interests?

True, men who engage in feminine hobbies aren’t always explicitly labeled homosexual. But they usually get some sort of negative or uncomfortable feedback, similar to the teasing Katie Goldman and Layla Murphy got from their classmates before their families and communities stepped up to support them. With a chuckle here and there, a friend once told me about her college-roommate’s dad who liked to crochet. She described a strong and active farmer, a good husband and father, who liked to crochet to stay busy during the winter months. He even gave her one of the scarves he had crocheted. (The scarf was actually the conversation-starter. She still has it.) I’m sure he got plenty of looks when people found out he liked crocheting, because even as my friend told me about him and his interests, her underlying tone was, “It was weird, but whatever”.

The key to remember is that gender is biological. Biology determines our gender, our interests do not. Have some confidence in that. Taking gender labels out of toy aisles won’t confuse people about what they are. It will just make it more ok to be a girl and like Star Wars, or to be a man and decorate cakes and date women. That’s a good thing.

Focus on the Next Generation

In Abstinence, Child Development, Choice, Drug Use, Families, father, Free Speech, Freedom, Grandparents, Marriage, motherhood, Parental Rights, Parenting, Sex Education, Sexual Freedom, The Family, Values on August 24, 2015 at 1:27 pm

couple in love 3by Erin Weist

I have four boys. Four wonderful, mischievous, wrestling, tumbling, occasionally smelly little boys. Someday they will be young men. Then they will go on to become men. I burst with pride at this thought, hoping with all my heart they become valiant, courageous, faithful, hard-working, responsible men. I think of this when I hear neighborhood reports of vulgar vandalism by boys as young as 12. I think of this when I read studies about boys near that same age who are addicted to hard-core porn. I worry for my boys and I worry for my daughter that these are the men she has to choose from as a potential spouse. I want my boys to be good men that someone else can entrust their daughter to and I want to entrust my daughter to a good man who will love her.

I spoke with my 97 year old grandmother this week. I told her I wanted to give my boys advice about how to treat a lady. I told her I thought a lot of those worthy traditions had been lost and that “old-fashioned” was considered a bad word. I loved hearing her stories when she recounted how respectful my grandfather had always been. He opened doors for her. He helped her with her chair. His language in her presence was above reproach. When they were courting they hardly ever spent time alone. My grandmother’s parents thought my grandfather was of a lower class and wouldn’t allow them to see each other, so instead they met at my great-aunt’s house, always chaperoned and usually helping with household chores. On the few occasions they went out it was generally with another couple.

With a twinkle in her eye my grandmother recounted to me (for the umpteenth time) how she was coming down the stairs at their high school and my grandfather saw her for the first time. He leaned over to his buddy and said, “There’s the girl I’m going to marry.” There was no temptation to engage in sexual activity while they were dating because the goal they had in mind was marriage. They wanted to spend time getting to know each other and focusing on the future.

Encouraging marriage and holding it up as an ideal in our society is a way to decrease the social ills that come from sexual promiscuity. If you want to start a fight online just dare to mention abstinence as a valid form of birth control. It wasn’t an issue for my grandmother because there was no social pressure; there was no public demand for birth control for young girls; there was, instead, a focus of marriage and family.

I know we can’t romanticize earlier ages just because we want to think about the rosy things. My great-grandmother was forced to marry a man in his 30s when she was only 13 years old. Her life was frankly horrifying. But that mostly came from an unloving father who didn’t want to care for her. We have the same problem today in one form or another. Again, things are better when we focus on marriage and family.

Young men today: would you make different choices as a teenager if you were focused on one day becoming a husband & father? Young women: would you make different choices or be more selective of who you date, and HOW you date, if you were using it as a catalyst to someday becoming a wife & mother?

I understand that unwanted pregnancy is an epidemic, particularly among lower socio-economic classes. But rather than focus on picking up the broken pieces, putting band-aids on gushing wounds, our legislation, our public policy, our mission statement as communities and civic leaders should be to focus on marriage and families. Everybody wins when young men grow up to be responsible husbands & fathers. Everyone wins when young women are revered and protected as the next generation of wives & mothers. I’m working for that in my home and my community. Will you join me?

How to Raise the IQ of your Community and Nation

In Child Development, Families, father on August 14, 2015 at 11:48 am

IQWant to raise the IQ of the children of your community and your nation?   Encourage fathers to live with their children and be actively engaged in their lives.  The Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science recently released a study that joins with a multitude of other studies that point to the importance of fathers as a main ingredient in successful outcomes for children.   This time the study looked specifically at IQ and behavior.

Here’s some of what it had to say:

For both boys and girls, fathers’ positive parental control predicted higher Performance IQ and fewer internalizing problems over six years later. These findings add to the increasing body of literature suggesting that fathers make important contributions to their children’s cognitive and behavioural functioning, and point to the benefits of developing policies that encourage fathers to spend time with their children…

The study acknowledges the myriad of problems associated with single parent homes – over 90 percent of them headed by mothers – and the study also points out “that fathers’ presence in middle childhood and early control might be important for children’s later cognitive and behavioural functioning for reasons other than fathers’ income contribution to the family, even among socioeconomically at-risk families.”

In other words, fathers contribute far more than just a paycheck.

It would seem that if governments were interested in having students who are better behaved – not to mention having higher IQs – they would promote stable man/woman marriage and engaged fatherhood.  Why is it that the most obvious solutions are the ones that are so often ignored.

To read more on the study, go here.

For the Love of Children

In Child Development, Choice, Families, father, Marriage, motherhood, Parenting, stay-at-home mom, The Family, Values, working mothers on August 13, 2015 at 11:25 am

boy with blocksby Jodi Walker

According to the childstats.gov website, over half of America’s children are being raised in daycares. The first time I ever thought about a “daycare child” was before I had children of my own. I was with my friend at a park and a huge bus pulled up, her 9 year-old child exclaimed, “Oh no! The day care kids are here.” At the time, I thought, “what a funny thing to say.” Then the kids came onto the playground. Some were well behaved and some were a nightmare. What I didn’t like was that the kids that were not behaved were not reprimanded. The kids that cried because of the bullies were not comforted. Do I think this happens at all Day Care sites? No. But one thing I have learned over the years, “Nobody loves my children like I do.”

We live states away from family, and so when we had our first child, I tried to work weekends so my husband could tend our child instead of someone I didn’t know.  We quickly came to the realization that rarely seeing each other was detrimental to our relationship, and I chose to quit.

The consequence of that decision?  We have never had cable television. For the first eight years of our marriage we had one bathroom.  Most nights we have dinner “in house” as a family. My job of being a stay-at-home mom can be demanding, difficult, devalued by society, and very thank-less at times. However, I have seen the difference in my children’s behavior compared to others.

Now, just because I am home doesn’t mean I have the time to sit and watch TV. In fact, before the birth of my new baby…number four, I was getting up at 5:30 to find time to exercise and going to bed about 10:30 p.m. …and I still had things that needed doing.  Time for television?  Maybe a movie on the weekend with my husband…other than that, RARELY.  Teaching my children manners, work, religious principles, and educating them in the art of cooking and reading took all day. Being an involved and good parent takes A LOT of energy and time.

I have a good friend who drops her son off at daycare 5 days a week for 9-10 hours a day. He spends more awake time at daycare than he does in his own home. They have one child and their house is bigger than our home.  Am I jealous? No. We are building character, not a material dynasty. I love my friend. I love her family. But sometimes I think about the memories that she will miss because of allowing someone else to raise her son.

In this day and age, it feels strange to be so blunt, but I would urge any who can to spend as much time with their children as possible. Once a child starts school, they are gone from the home for a majority of the rest of their lives. I gently but firmly discipline my children. They are devoted to me. I believe it is because they spend many good times with me so when I do need to correct them, they are secure in my love for them. My husband comes home and plays with them. He can do this because I am managing the home and most days have things under control and a healthy dinner on the table. While Day Care is an easy option, I do not believe it to be the best option.

Nobody loves your children as much as you do.  Our children need OUR love, OUR time, OUR attention.  Let’s be honest. Those who watch children in a daycare setting want the paycheck.  They do not care if the children in their care are taught values, learn manners, develop self confidence, treat others with kindness, are hugged and comforted if hurt…need I go on?  I have heard “a Mother’s love is nearer to God’s love than any other.”  That’s why God sent these precious children to mothers….and not to day care.

What your child really needs for school this year

In Child Development, Education, Families, father, Parenting, Schools, The Family, Values on August 7, 2015 at 7:30 am

young child studying w: momby Kelsi Shipley

It’s one of my favorite times of the year: Back to School. As a child I always loved the smell of new notebooks, crayons, and markers. It’s no surprise that I became a teacher.

Right now, stores all around the country are advertising back to school sales. Some even have printed lists of what your child will need for the upcoming year. However, there is something that is vital to your child’s success that may not be on the list.

This school year your child will need a pencil to write, they will need crayons to draw, and they will need you to support them. You are a key factor to your child’s success in school. You are the keeper of their emotional, physical, and mental health. What happens at home, truly will affect the learning that will take place in the classroom.

You do not have to volunteer every week to support your child in school. As a teacher, I am grateful for the parents who volunteer. I am also equally grateful for the parents who help their children gain a love of education while at home.

Helping your child see that you believe education is important will make a difference at school. Your child will know that what they are learning is worthwhile, even if it takes time to understand a certain concept. Your child loves you, and wants you to recognize their good deeds.

You can help your child’s teachers at home by communicating with them. Letting your child’s teacher know if there is an issue you are concerned about, helps your child see that you are taking an active role in their education.

You can also help at home by making sure your child has a quiet place to do their homework. If your child has questions, try your best to help them. This may mean looking up information online, emailing the teacher, or taking your child early to school the next day. By doing this, your child will see that perseverance and hard work can pay off.

Your child will have many exciting times throughout the year. They will also have times where they feel discouraged or alone. Creating a loving and open relationship with your child will help them to feel safe during these times. If your child believes that they can work through their discouragement, they will be successful.

Education is one of the greatest blessings we have. Being able to learn, create, and initiate ideas generates positive self-esteem and success. I cannot wait for the upcoming year! As educators and parents, I hope we can all work together to make this year a successful year.

A Letter to my Children: Please Choose Marriage

In Abstinence, Child Development, Choice, Cohabitation, Education, Families, father, Marriage, Media, motherhood, Parenting, Sexual Freedom, The Family, Values on August 3, 2015 at 8:01 am

writing a letterby Erin Weist

Someday I hope my children make it a priority to get married. I know it will only get harder to keep the traditions of family-building alive, rampant as societies are with self-serving choices. I wanted to write a letter in hopes of expressing to them why I think marriage is important and why I hope they choose this path when the time comes.

My dear sweet babies,

I know you will only be babies for a little while. I know when this letter becomes really pertinent to your life you will be grown and moving into adulthood. I hope you are happy. You can do this by making choices that lead to overall happiness. Unfortunately the world around you is full of sophistries that try to lie about ways you will be happy. These ways are generally self-serving and focus on immediate pleasures rather than true, long-term happiness. One of the things that I truly hope for your futures is that you make it a priority to find a good spouse and create a family together.

Many voices around the world say that marriage isn’t important, that it is too binding, that people need to be free, that relationships should be fluid. Please don’t listen. Your mother (who loves you more than you will know until you have your own children) begs you to turn away from these ideas. Marrying your father was the best decision I’ve ever made and has brought me some of the single greatest blessings in this life—especially all of you! Many people will also say that you don’t need a spouse to have children, that you can co-habitate with multiple partners of any gender at any given time, even simultaneously. Again, please don’t heed these selfish lures. They may tout happiness and freedom but they are meant only to ensnare and enslave. Women & men were made to be together—mating for life, as it were! When you follow the ends of these purposes you will find happiness!

I love your dad so much and I know he loves me, but these are only words. Real love also comes through actions, not immediate pleasure. It’s the support of one another through difficult choices or trials. It’s encouraging each other to set lofty goals, both individually and as a couple, and seeing it through in attaining those goals. It’s intimacy on a much deeper level than can be found anywhere else. It’s putting the needs of another human ABOVE your own. This will be preparation for becoming a mother or father to your own children.

As an example, while writing this letter I have been interrupted several times by one of you when it is way past bedtime (no, I won’t tell you who) and each time I have been stern and annoyed at the disruption. Finally when it came to tears I realized that I wasn’t practicing what I preached—putting someone else’s needs above my own. So I asked my sweet child, “what do you need?” The reply, “a hug,” was a sweet reminder of the lessons I’ve learned as a mother about selflessness and how those actions truly bring peace and happiness. Now he is in bed and we are both filled.

Family life may not be the only place to learn these important lessons but it is specially created to be the most intensive course in learning and joy that we can ever have. I want the best for all of you, I hope you want the best for yourself and never settle for any counterfeit. I hope your father & I present to you a positive image about the joy & benefits of marriage and that you’ll want that life for yourself. We love each other and we love you. Don’t ever settle for anything less yourself.

Love, mom.

Do Parents Matter?

In Abstinence, Child Development, Cohabitation, Courts, Families, father, Freedom, Government, Marriage, Parenting, Same-Sex Marriage, Sexual Freedom, Single Mothers, Supreme Court, The Family, Values on July 31, 2015 at 11:21 am
parents with adult sonby Mekelle Tenney
Do children need both mom and dad? This has become a very controversial question. Do children do best in a home where both the mom and dad are actively involved in their child’s life? This question has been brought up several times in the debate on same sex marriage. However this concern has been dismissed in most cases based on the lack of evidence to support the claim that children do best with both a mother and father. Due to the fact that same sex marriage is a fairly new concept in America it is safe to say that perhaps that is true. We don’t have enough data on same sex couples to conduct the proper research, at least here in America. However the question of needing a mom and a dad has been asked long before the same sex marriage debate came around. Society has been dealing with the effects of the broken family long before this issue came up.
The state of the family in America.
Currently 40.6% of  babies born in the United States are born to unwed mothers
According to the US Census one in three American children grow up without a father present in the home.
Divorce rate in America is between 40% and 50%.
Over 40% of cohabiting couples have children.
48% of women cohabitate with their spouse or partner before they marry.
What difference does it make?
The following are just a few of many findings surrounding parenting and child development.
Toddlers with involved fathers are better problem solvers and have higher IQs by age three.
Children with involved fathers are 43% more likely to have mostly all A’s in school.
Children with involved fathers are 33% less likely to repeat a grade.
 Girls with involved fathers have higher self-esteem and are less likely to become pregnant as a teenager.
Studies show that by 8 weeks of age infants can notice the difference between a male and female interacting with them.
Fathers encourage competition while mothers encourage equity. Many psychologists believe that it is dangerous to have only one of those parenting styles. In order for a child to develop healthy socially as well as mentally they need both parenting styles.
Psychologists have also found that mothers and fathers communicate differently with their children. They have also found that children need both forms of communication for healthy social development.
Mothers naturally care for and nurture their children while fathers tend to play and interact. Again, both are needed in a child’s development.
What now?
With the legalization of same sex marriage The number of children without mothers or fathers in the home will continue to increase. The social science surrounding the issue of child development and the need for both male and female influence will continue to be ignored. And the children are the ones who will pay the price. What a selfish generation we have become.
Continue to support the family!
Though the statistics shared earlier about the state of the family may seem very discouraging it is important for us to remember that the family still needs advocates. Though we lost the battle on marriage there are still many other battles to fight and our involvement is critical. We must continue to stand for the family, be aware of what goes on in congress and how it affects the institution of the family, be informed, and speak up! The family needs you and your voice.

More than two Parents: Not so New and Not so Enlightened

In Abstinence, adoption, Child Development, Choice, Cohabitation, Courts, Diane Robertson, Families, father, Feminism, Free Speech, Freedom, Government, Marriage, Parental Rights, Sexual Freedom, The Family, Values on July 29, 2015 at 3:10 pm

child 3by Diane Robertson

In 2013 California made it legally possible for children to have more than two parents. More states will surely follow suit. The diversity-in-family-structure-loving-liberals think this is enlightened. They’re working hard to bring society out of the dark ages of Married mother and father families into the “Brave New World” of many parents.

Except this idea isn’t so brave and isn’t so new. Some children have already had a similar experience through divorce and they are speaking outThe Ruth Institute is collecting stories from children of divorce. As it turns out divorced couples, remarried couples, step families, broken families, and shared custody don’t actually feel so enlightened to the children who grew up in these situations.

One such personal story, told by Jennifer Johnson, illustrates what it actually feels like growing up with 5 parents. Johnson’s parents divorced when she was about three. Her mother remarried once and her father remarried twice. Johnson explains what her life was like growing up with five parents:

“it means going back and forth between all those households on a regular basis, never having a single place to call home during your most tender and vulnerable years. It means having divided Christmases, other holidays, and birthdays–you spend one with one parent, and another with the other parent, never spending a single holiday or birthday with both parents. Imagine having each of your parents completely ignore the other half of you, the other half of your family, as if it did not even exist. Meanwhile, imagine each parent pouring their energy into their new families and creating a unified home for their new children. These experiences give you the definite impression of being something leftover, something not quite part of them. You live like that on a daily basis for 18+ years.”

So why would so many adults push for this type of family brokenness and even make it possible for many adults to have legal control over a child? It’s called selfishness. Adults want this so they can have children and have sex with whoever they please and at whatever stage of life they wish. They want this sort of life legal so their partner can make medical and educational decisions for their children. They want convenience for themselves, but not their children.

Johnson writes about a woman, Masha Gessen, a prominent LGBT activist, who grew up with a married mother and father and speaks frankly about how her children have 5 parents. Gessen bemoans the fact that there, as yet, isn’t a way for her children to have all of their parents legally:

“I have three kids who have five parents, more or less, and I don’t see why they shouldn’t have five parents legally… I would like to live in a legal system that is capable of reflecting that reality, and I don’t think that’s compatible with the institution of marriage.”

Johnson’s replies to Gessen simply calling out the truth of the matter:

“If what I had is so great, then why don’t they want it as children? Here’s my conclusion: they want it as adults but not as children. They want the benefits of the socially conservative family structure when they are children. But as adults, they want sexual freedom, or at least they want to appear ‘open minded’ and ‘tolerant’ about others sexual choices, even at the expense of children, even though they themselves would never want to live under what they advocate. It’s a bizarre sort of a ‘win-win’ for them, I guess.”

Children don’t need more than two legal parents. Society doesn’t need diversity in family structure. All children and all of society needs responsible adults who marry before having children, work daily on a loving relationship and together raise their children in stable, happy homes. It can be done and would be the source of a truly “enlightened” society!

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