Are you raising a teenager? Do you know someone else who could use some parenting/ caregiving advice about teens? Please read today’s fascinating interview.
For parents/ guardians/ grandparents/ caregivers of teenagers:
Today’s post is one that I am so thrilled to prepare for you. I could not find a more upstanding man, who has a heart for teens, to answer the following questions. Coach Carl West is not only a coach, he is also the area FCA rep for the entire county of Gwinnett, GA.
Residents outside of Georgia, and outside of the United States, will not understand the enormity of Gwinnett County. Carl has influenced the lives of hundreds of teens, and likewise been privy to the inner workings of teenage dynamics and complexities. Carl is someone I greatly admire, because of his passion for teens and his countless hours of tireless service to them.
I am thrilled to share Carl’s answers, with you, in his own words. Carl did not just type up answers to the three questions I asked him. He went above and beyond by also providing us with a bonus segment that you do not want to miss. Be sure to read the end of this post, where Carl tells us seven areas we need to have ongoing conversations with our teens.
Struggles with teenagers:
This week, I received several upsetting texts from friends who are dealing with challenging teenager situations. To top it off, I was introduced to a woman whose teenager is dealing with difficulties far beyond anything I could imagine.
I was at such a loss for words when it came to these precious mothers. I knew I needed to present them with more than my mere words. These ladies wanted conclusive facts, not my mere opinions. Carl is just the person to answer our questions. Below are the three questions I asked him, along with his expertise advice. It is my hope that these answers will help my friends and my new acquaintance.
Answers to tough questions about teens:
What are the Challenges that today’s youth face?
Everyday our youth are faced with the negative influences to do drugs, alcohol, commit crimes, be bullied, suicidal thoughts, pressure to join a gang, pornography, and having sex before marriage.
Many loving, caring parents are watching as their children are falling into destructive patterns. What can parents/ guardians do to help their teens transition into law-abiding adults?
It has been said that “the family who prays together, stays together”. I believe that prayer must be the first line of defense for our children. Paul said, “We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12). As Paul states, in this verse, all negative influences come from the evil spiritual realm, and only the Spirit of God can help our children overcome these evil forces.
My second advice, to parents, is to find a Bible believing church, with an active youth group, and get their children involved.
My third advice, to parents, is to follow the “Tips for Parents” put out by the National Runaway Safeline web-site. These tips are the best that I have ever come across, that address how to raise your children in today’s culture.
How do you feel about the way social media is impacting teenagers?
Unfortunately, social media has had a very negative impact on our youth today. Parents should have social media conversations, establish rules, and set boundaries concerning all types of social media. For more detailed tips, see the National Runaway Safeline web-site.
Jesus Christ is the answer for all life’s problems.
After answering my questions, Carl expounded with the following:
There are seven areas that parents should have an ongoing conversation with their teens about:
- Love & Forgiveness
- Peer Pressure & Social Media
- Drugs & Alcohol
- Respect for themselves and others
Further reading about navigating challenging situations:
Carl left us with a website to follow up on. Please check the site he advised. Additionally, if you need specific prayer about your rebellious child, click here. To share more about your personal struggles, please click here. Click here if you would like to read about other parents who are in a place they do not currently want to be.
Below is Coach West’s mailing information, if you enjoyed Coach West’s advice, like I did, and you would like to partner with him in his many activities. Please visit his website: www.fcacoachesgwinnett.org
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