QUESTION: I’m 12 going on 13 and every time I ask my parents to do something, it ends up in a fight. We just can’t seem to talk anymore. Help!
ANSWER: Thanks for your question! Asking for help tells me that you are mature and aware. Here are some suggestions to think about:
1. Talk to Godabout your attitude and your relationship with your parents. Let him speak to your heart by his Holy Spirit. Ask him to show you YOUR part in all of this. If you are humble, open to correction and honest, God really will speak to you!
2. Pick a good timeto talk to your parents with your request. Make certain they have time to listen. Don’t spring your request on them right when they get home, are tired, have gotten bad news, or have just finished arguing.
3. Have a plan. Think about what you want to do and how you want to say it. Make sure you have thought-out your plan well. This will show your parents you are responsible, thoughtful, and grown up.
4. Try to figure out what your parents might object to and answer their objections CALMLY. If you lose your cool, chances are your parents will lose theirs too! Staying calm will show your parents you have self-control and can discuss things like an adult.
5. Be willing to compromise. Getting some of what you want is better than nothing. Decide ahead of time what compromises you are willing to live with. Being willing to compromise will show your parents that you are reasonable.
Remember that your parents are accountable to God for how they raise you. Parents have the last word. When you honor them with your obedience, you please God and show them you are trustworthy, spiritually mature, and on the right track in life. Before parents agree to your request, they must be convinced that you are mature enough, smart enough, and godly enough to handle whatever it is you are asking. Trust that your parents are loving you just as much when they say no as when they say yes…probably more when they say no. When your parents know you have a plan, have self-control, are willing to compromise, and accept their answer, they are far more likely to hear and agree to your request. Prepare for a whole new relationship with them!
Jack Lipski, M.A.
Shepherd Christian Counselor
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