If you’re a single mom of teens, you likely already know that teenagers learn by example more than by a set of rules you hand down. That’s so very true on the issue of purity. Your teenagers are watching every move you make and are formulating their own expectations for life, love, and their own choices.
Are you a dating single mom?
Do you bring lots of new boyfriends around your kids? Consider setting a time limit like, you won’t introduce a boyfriend to your kids until you’ve been dating for six months.
Are you always looking at men as potentials? Try to avoid allowing your kids to pick up on any desperation from you. Send the message that you’re patient, waiting for God’s plan and timing in your life.
Do your dates ever spend the night? This is probably the biggest red flag. Please realize that you can’t ask your teenagers to strive for purity if you’re not modeling it.
Are you not a dating single mom?
Do you talk badly about men? Consider that the words you say will get into the hearts and minds of your kids. Your girls will have an unhealthy outlook on men and your boys will wonder if your words apply to them, too.
Have you sworn off marriage for good? Try to avoid sending a message of doom and gloom for what God created as a beautiful covenant. Speak words of hope into your teenagers’ future marriages.
Do your have alone time? Even if you’re not dating, be sure you get out for some adult time. You need a break—and your kids know it!
As single moms we carry the burden of steering our children away from dangerous things. We can pass down all kinds of rules and parent from a place of fear, but if we, instead, parent from a lifestyle that proves we believe what we preach, we stand a much better chance of pointing our teenagers to God’s very best for them.
If you need some help talking to your kids about their own sexuality, check out Hot Buttons: Sexuality edition.
What are some of the area in your life that need some attention in order to come back in line with God’s best for you?
Nicole O’Dell, author of 21 books since 2007, is founder of Choose NOW Ministries and was recently endorsed by Focus on the Family. Visit www.nicoleodell.com for access to her bustling blog network and other resources.