Bible Reading: Ephesians 6:1-10
Key Words: provoke not your children to wrath
The website “Troubled Teens” states the following.
More than 3.3 million teens are exposed to domestic violence, especially at home where they are physically abused and neglected at a rate 15 times higher than the national average. The effects of witnessing or experiencing violence at home vary tremendously from one teen to another.
For a teen growing up in a violent home, it can be devastating and a life-long effect whereas they are forced to grow up faster than their age group, lacking real teenage-hood due to the major responsibilities of cleaning, cooking, and taking care of their younger siblings. They are given limited freedom which will likely result in isolation. They might not be allowed to bring friends over due to the chaotic environment. They also find themselves trying to fit in while keeping their family problems a secret.
It has been my experience that physical abuse causes anger, fear, poor grades, and lying to cover bruises and cuts. Teens who are physically abused handle disagreements by abusing others. The old saying goes: “Hurt people hurt people.”
For parents, let me offer some suggestions on discipline for children before their teen years.
You never discipline in anger but out of love.
Do not use your hand to spank.
Have a set number of “licks” to give (never over three or four). (If you can’t make your point in that number of strokes, then you will never make it anyway.)
After disciplining, always hug them and pray with them. Assure them of your love.
If you do things God’s way, you will find you won’t have to fight with your child when he becomes a teen.
Remember, whether you are the parent or the teen…love never fails.