When I was a single mom of toddlers and young kids, there was a whole set of challenges to overcome. Whose class would I visit for the Thanksgiving party? Who would watch the kids when I went to parent-teacher conferences? Who would stay home with the sick kid while I drove the other two to school? All of those questions and more plagued me on a daily basis—but, even though they weren’t always easy, they were things I could handle.
Then… my son hit the teen years.
I realized that a whole new set of challenges was descending upon us, and I’d better re-think my concerns. Peer pressure, bullying, dating, sex…those were the issues I needed to worry about now. I immediately saw that I had better catch up in hurry.
So I devised a system for talking to my kids about tough issues before the issues came up—before the peer pressure hit. I crafted it like a game in that I put my kids in the middle of a tough, fictional situation and gave them four choices of responses. They would choose the responses they thought they might pick in the heat of the moment, and then we’d discuss the possible outcomes.
It worked so well with my kids that we continue to do it to this day. In fact, it has been such a great way to talk about issues and prepare my kids to face peer pressure armed with the tools they need to say no, Kregel Publications and I decided to put them in book form.
Each Hot Buttons book begins with a real look at the temptations and situations teens are faced with, including current statistics and advice for parents to consider before launching into a discussion. The most unique and practical aspect of each Hot Button book is the strategic scenarios—short stories that allow parents to introduce certain challenges to their teens in a creative “what would you do?” question and answer format. Each Hot Button scenario is followed by a few choices from which the teen can choose to resolve the situation. Parents are then guided through a discussion to help prepare their tweens and teens for real-life Hot Buttons situations.
And, if you want to try it out, take a look at the Hot Buttons 30-day challenge. I posted 30 days of Hot Button scenarios you can use with your tweens and teens. It’s totally free—so why not check it out?
No matter what your current worries are: babysitters, “me” time, sick kids, peer pressure, bullying, drugs, etc…You don’t have to carry those worries alone. You might be a single parent, but with God, you’re never on your own.
“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
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.
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