You’ve probably heard this a thousand times, but the key to being a good spouse AND a good parent is communication.
In a marriage, communication is important for the obvious reasons. When making decisions that effect the family, communication is needed with the family and especially between spouses. Compromise, as I mentioned before, can only be done with communication. I could preach communication all day, but I know you guys have heard it all before.
What about with parenting? Well, yes, commercials tell you over and over that it’s important to talk to your child about drugs and that it’s important to know about your child’s friends, which is accomplished by communication. So again, you’ve heard it all before.
However, I’m going to present an example of communication to you that you may not have heard before, and this one is important for parents. When my daughter was less than 2-years-old, she asked me that very cliche question of why the sky is blue. I proceeded to explain:
“Gas in the sky lets light through. However, some light, such as blue light, gets absorbed by the gas and scattered. So it’s coming from every direction. Since blue is all over the place, that’s why the sky looks blue on a cloudless day.”
My mother-in-law looked at me like I was stupid.
“How can you expect her to understand that?” she asked.
“I don’t expect her to understand it. Yet,” I responded.
About a week ago my daughter was on the phone with one of her cousins. He asked her why the sky was blue. Remember, she’s 7 right now. We haven’t had this discussion since she was less than 2. Here’s what she said:
“My daddy says that there’s stuff in the sky that bounces the light all over the place. Blue light gets bounced more so you see it more.”
I smiled of course.
So my point is that you should NEVER talk to your child like he/she is a child. Always give your full knowledge. They soak it in like a sponge. Which means it’s also ok to start early with the drug discussions. Don’t put it off because “he won’t understand that right now.” Maybe not, but later they’ll remember and they WILL understand.