When People Don’t Agree With How You Raise Your Children


The Fundamental Home

I posted a picture with Briana and me on Facebook.

Someone told me that I shouldn’t allow my children to use the peace sign.  I also has someone say that I shouldn’t encourage Briana to make a poochie face, and I definitely shouldn’t be doing it with her.  Then, they said that we could take the picture for our fun, but we shouldn’t post it to Facebook because my husband is in ministry, and it would reflect poorly on him and the Lord.

Le sigh.

I have been reading blog posts, and it seems that a lot of folks had issues with acquaintances, friends, and family (and sometimes, strangers) that didn’t agree with how they raise their children.

There’s the homeschool mom whose extended family felt that they were sheltering their children too much with their educational choices and were vocal about the dangers of this “extreme” option over the turkey dinner, even calling them names in front of their children.

There’s the parents who allow their children to listen to certain types of music or watch certain movies that another member of their church does not feel is acceptable.  The children overheard someone criticizing their family over their entertainment, and now, they don’t even want to go to church.

There’s the family who is vegetarian, and every person who meets them that finds out about their diet feels the need to tell them the dangers of not eating meat (or gives them “helpful” Bible verses).  That one’s for you, C.O.

Maybe you have seen some of the same posts I have.

Maybe you have even experienced critical attitudes from others.

It’s pretty hard to deal with when it is happening to you.

We’ve had our moments.  I have bitten my tongue.  I have also neglected to bite my tongue, and later, wished I had.  When people don’t agree with how I raise my children and feel the need to tell me, I struggle with extending them grace, but that’s exactly what I need to do.

Extending someone grace isn’t simply a matter of biting your tongue, though.  It is also a matter of the heart.  It means not thinking ill of them.  It means letting hard comments pass by without even inflicting pain.  It means compassion and understanding on your part.

I should have two goals when dealing with people who don’t agree with how I raise my children.  I want them to leave the conversation feeling as though they were able to effectively communicate with me, and I want to leave the conversation with feelings of love toward the other person.

So, here are a few ways we try to handle it when people don’t agree with how we raise our children.  Maybe it will help you to extend some grace when you need to do so.

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