As our children grow up, they face new challenges and difficult questions, and they need guidance from their parents, especially on issues that are embarrassing, uncomfortable or awkward. But when they don't get that from us – or they feel like they can't talk to us – they start to look elsewhere, and the mire of confusion only gets worse.
That's why we want to equip you to have important conversations with your child before they're faced with difficulties and temptations. And where a child has already made poor choices, we want to help equip you to have grace-filled conversations so your child is assured of your unconditional love.
The following resources are designed to help empower you to talk to your child, tween or teen about issues that are often difficult and awkward – but ones that are crucial to talk about in order to guide them along a path of discernment where they can learn how to make healthy choices.
We live in an information-saturated world where a quick search is only a click away and misleading advice is common. That's why we want to equip you with the tools you need to start a conversation about healthy sexuality at every stage of development.
Our free PDF download The Talk includes 20 pages of helpful, practical information on what to share about healthy sexual development with your child and when, how to convey a positive, Biblical perspective on sexuality, how to remain your kids' first source of information, and how to safeguard your kids from sexual abuse.
In the two-part broadcast entitled "Returning to a Godly Perspective on Sex and Romance," pastor and author Levi Lusko not only addresses the very real issues Christian teens and young adults are facing in today's hypersexualized culture, but he also describes his own struggles with pornography and how we can protect ourselves from overt temptation and compromise by understanding God's design for sexuality.
In the spring of 2017, Netflix released a TV show that was quickly awash in controversy. 13 Reasons Why that took an unfortunately graphic look at topics such as suicide, bullying and rape. While this show is not recommended by Focus on the Family Canada and is rife with potentially harmful content (for our children and ourselves), it did teach us that our children have a desperate longing to understand these issues and are watching these shows to try and find answers.
A Parent's Guide to 13 Reasons Why will inform you on the issues addressed in this TV show (bullying and cyber-bullying, cutting and self-injury, sexting, rape and sexual assault, and suicide) in order to help you be proactive in talking to your child about these issues, and how to help your child if they or their friend have experienced this first-hand.
You can also listen to six episodes of a Focus on the Family podcast that unpacks these issues from the perspective of Christian counsellors.
One of the biggest ways the world is different for our children today is technology. From social media and smart phones to video games and hidden apps, there are a lot of ways for our children to misstep with today's technology. But it can be difficult to know how to help our children understand this world when we barely know it ourselves.
A Parent's Guide to Today's Technology provides a detailed breakdown of how technology affects brain development, understanding video game ratings and content, what you need to know about the different social media apps, how to find hidden apps on your child's phone, and how to prepare for, prevent and deal with cyber-bullying.
In the documentary Over 18, produced by an organization called Hope for the Sold, Joe tells his story. At just nine years old, he was already addicted to online pornography – a sobering reality for parents, but one that can embolden them to be proactive. If you haven't heard of the film, visit Over18Doc.com to find out more or to look into screening it at your church (for viewers ages 16 or older).
If you would like to speak with someone on our team and receive prayer support – or even get in touch with our counselling team for a free, one-time phone consultation – please call us at 1.800.661.9800, email [email protected]. Whatever you and your family are dealing with, we want you to know you don’t have to face it alone. We’re here to help.
Teens turn to cutting – a form of self-harm – as a way of dealing with painful thoughts and emotional stress
If you fear your child might be contemplating suicide, you need to talk to them right away to find out the truth