Keep the Door Open for Your Teen

by | Apr 11, 2013 | Man

“Dad, aren’t you going to open the door?”

One morning not long ago, I heard that from my fifteen-year-old son, Chance.

We have several routines we go through every morning before he leaves for school. One is sitting together for a few minutes to read some wisdom and maybe talk for a minute. We’ve been doing that probably seven or eight years.

But lately there’s another routine that’s been taking place not long after that, and it’s really no big deal … or so I thought.

So that morning, we finished reading and then Chance left the room to do whatever else he does to get ready. After a few minutes, I heard him say from the front of the house, “Dad…?”

“Yeah?”

“Are you going to open the door?”

I said, “What’re you talking about?”

And he said again, “Aren’t you going to open the front door?”

I was thinking, You’re almost 16; you’re as tall as I am now. I’m pretty sure you can open your own door!

I’d forgotten about the other part of our morning routine. He leaves pretty early, so I usually turn the light on there by the front door, open it, kiss his forehead, give him a hug, and say something like, “Hey, you’re a winner. And you have a great life and great responsibility ahead of you.” Some word of encouragement that’s on my heart that day.

I guess I flash back to my days playing football, and imagine giving him a positive word before he runs out the tunnel and on the field before a big game. In many ways, we do send our children out to battle every day.

Anyway, he reminded me about that, and it struck me as a sign that he places some value on it. He wanted his dad to open the door!

He didn’t need me to. He could have turned on the light; thank God, the electric bill was paid. And as I said, he could have opened the door … but he wanted me to. For my son, there’s something significant about his dad opening the door and sending him out into the world.

Maybe it’s a sign that he still needs me and wants me to be part of his life—even as he gets older and more independent. For me, it affirmed my role as a dad.

And often with teenagers we have to grasp for any kind of affirmation we can get. Teens might not say “I love you” or “Thank you” as often. But sometimes they do say, “Hey, Dad, can you help me check the oil in my car?” Or, “Hey, Dad, can you take me to practice?” “Dad, will you open the door for me?”

Maybe they just want some help, but sometimes I believe they also want our presence. They want to be reassured that we’re still watching out for them and taking care of them.

Adolescence is often a confusing time for teens and for their fathers. Sometimes it seems they don’t want to be seen with you or have anything to do with you.

And many times it would be easy to just give up. But don’t do it. Right now your teenager needs your love and acceptance—maybe more than ever before. And believe me, you might need a few good times to think back on as you navigate the ups and downs that often come during the teen years.

Action Points for Dads on the Journey

  • Find or come up with an encouraging saying or quote or Scripture verse to leave your child with as he or she walks out the door to school each day.
  • Want to be closer with your teenager? Flexibility might be a huge factor. You may have to participate in some odd-seeming activities—and maybe at odd hours—to be part of his or her world.
  • Really try to relax and bring humor to the daily interactions and challenges of having a teenager. It will make a difference!
  • Also really try to notice and point out the positives in your teen. He/she really needs your validation and encouragement.
  • Take the courageous, loving step of apologizing to your child. “Katie, I know I’ve been busy in my own world recently, and I’m sorry.” “Brandon, I know I’ve been under a lot of stress from work, and I’ve been short with you. It’s the wrong approach. Will you forgive me?”

We want to hear from you.What has helped you connect with your teenager? Please join the discussion below or on our Father’s.com’s Facebook page.

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Defining the Dangerous Good Movement of Spirit-Empowered Men

Defining the Dangerous Good Movement of Spirit-Empowered Men

Jesus told His disciples that men could belong to culture (the world) or belong to Him. He then proceeded to tell them He had “chosen” them out of culture and brought them intentionally into His community. He knew both communities were available to men and that each...

Kingdom Economics: Seek Wisdom, Knowledge and Understanding

Kingdom Economics: Seek Wisdom, Knowledge and Understanding

The BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) released the July consumer inflation report.  Consumer inflation moderated a little for July as higher prices for housing and food were offset by lower energy prices.  Consumer inflation was 8.5% compared to 9.1% in June and...

Abundantly Overtaken with the Blessings of God

Abundantly Overtaken with the Blessings of God

Our God loves to bless His children. In fact, this is one of the things that set the Israelites apart from all other people. The God of Israel loved His children and wanted to dwell among them and bless them. In return they were to worship Him out of a heart of...

Joyce Meyer: God Has More for You Than Meets the Eye

Joyce Meyer: God Has More for You Than Meets the Eye

Being a Christian and following God is a great adventure. It’s also challenging because, to people who don’t believe in Christ, we seem a bit odd in our way of thinking and doing things, like we’re upside down compared to how the world generally operates. But the...

Prophecy: The Josephs Are Stepping Into Their Suddenly

Prophecy: The Josephs Are Stepping Into Their Suddenly

“I have declared from the beginning the former things [which happened in times past to Israel]; they went forth from My mouth and I made them known; then suddenly I did them, and they came to pass [says the Lord]” (Isa. 48:3 AMPC). The promises that go forth from His...

Are Domestic Missions as Important as International Missions?

Are Domestic Missions as Important as International Missions?

Huntington, Indiana, is a small town that is witnessing a revival stirring within the youth. For 10 days, I was able to witness this firsthand by the opportunity to lead a trip to this town to serve with six other college girls. During this time, I saw how the Lord...

RECENT ARTICLES

Kenneth Copeland Ministries: 5 Things for Believers to Prosper in Tough Times

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJteJcC2Fr8 The Bible teaches us that God is our source of provision, no questions whatsoever. But have you learned how to dip your bucket in the well of His supply?...
8 Ways You Can Attract God’s Full Attention

8 Ways You Can Attract God’s Full Attention

We all want God’s attention, right? The best way to get His attention is to give Him our full attention, and pay close attention to what attracts Him. There are certain attitudes and actions which attract God and others that repel Him. We want to create an atmosphere...

Could Judas Have Been Saved?

Could Judas Have Been Saved?

The answer is yes. If Judas would have simply repented to God, he could have been saved. The Bible tells us that everyone can be saved. Judas knew he had sinned but he didn’t bring it to God. A person can feel remorse within themselves, but not remorse for sinning...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]