Wednesday, April 02, 2008

You Don't Trust Me

From FOCUS ON THE FAMILY, Today, 02-Apr-2008 edition

 

YOU DON’T TRUST ME

By Dr James Dobson

 

If there’s a magic bullet that children, especially teenagers,

use on their folks, a perfect phrase that melts the toughest

resolve of a parent within seconds, it’s these four words –

You don’t trust me.

 

The instant a young person accuses us of being suspicious,

of imagining the worst about him, we start back-pedaling.

 

“No dear, it’s not that I don’t trust you being out with your

friends or taking the car, it’s just that I ...”, and then we

run out of words; totally flustered.

 

Maybe it’s about time we get honest as parents, and recognise

that trust is divisible. In other words, we can trust our children

in some things, but not others. It’s not an all or nothing proposition.

 

We do this in the adult world with business all the time.

Most of us are authorised, for example, to spend a certain

amount of the company’s money in certain accounts,

but not the whole corporate cheque book.

 

So let’s stop being taken in by our kids, and boldly state

that trust comes in stages – some of it now, and more later on.

 

Parents have the task of risking only what we can reasonably

expect to be handled safely. To do more is not really trust;

it’s foolhardy.

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