Parenting Your Teen in an Age of Social Media

As a writer, I like social media. I can appreciate the benefits it offers because it has opened up doors for writers by offering a quick, easy, and free way to connect with readers.Parenting Your Teen in an Age of Social Media

As a parent, however, I have mixed feelings toward social media. I hear stories about kids who have misused it, been hurt by it, or made a terrible mistake that went viral, and I panic because I’m raising daughters in a generation that’s still figuring out how to be smart with a smart phone.

It’s a complex challenge, to say the least.

Parents often say they wish they could do away with social media for kids, because the problems outweigh the benefits. While I understand this, we all know it’s not going anywhere.

With new apps constantly being introduced, and teens growing increasingly reliant on online communities, we parents are forced to deal with this reality and develop a game plan.

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Connecting With Your Teen Daughter

When I began writing my first book for teen girls, I was writing for mothers. So when I sent two sample chapters to my editor for review, she offered pivotal advice that helped shape me as a writer and a mom.

She said, “This is a good start, but if you sound like a mom, the girls will stop reading. Write it instead from the voice of a wise big sister. Channel your teenage self.”girls - erica kiani2

What her advice forced me to do was to put myself in the shoes of today’s girls. It forced me to go back in time and dig up memories of myself at their age – even the unpleasant ones I really don’t like to remember.

And when I combined my experiences with the realities of today’s teen culture (way harder than the environment I grew up in), I softened up toward these girls. I grew a heart for what they’re going through and the pressures they’re bound to face.

Instead of seeing myself as a parent with so much wisdom to impart, I began seeing myself as their sister in Christ, someone to walk beside them with compassion for what they face and hope for what God has in store.

I share this because I now understand how the approach we take in talking to teen girls determines whether or not they listen. Without compassion or empathy, they’ll inevitably tune us out. 

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12 Back-to-School Prayers for Your Child

It’s that time of year again, time to pull out the backpacks, get haircuts, set up alarm clocks, and make 20 trips to Target because school is about to start, and Mom is on a mission.

Wherever your heart is this season – whether you’re jumping for joy because you’re ready for some space, or crying on the sofa because you aren’t ready to let your kids go – you probably have mixed emotions about the school year ahead.BACKTOSCHOOL22

You hope it will be a great one, but what if it’s not? You want your kids to excel and be happy, but what if they fall and struggle in ways you never saw coming?

We moms like control, and not having control of the next nine months can make us feel a little, well, anxious. And since my favorite cure for anxiety is prayer, I’d like to share some prayers that might calm an anxious heart.

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