Is Your Family Holding You Back?

meme with a picture of a young woman sitting on a wall that overlooks at city. It says, No one can become a truly biblical adult without setting some limits, leaving home, and cleaving somewhere else.

When some individuals begin to develop boundaries, they say, “But my mother (or father, or sister, or brother) is my best friend.” They often feel fortunate that, in times of family stress, their best friends are the family in which they were raised. They don’t think they need an intimate circle of friends besides their own parents and siblings.

They misunderstand the biblical function of the family. . . .

How Happiness Can Hurt Your Marriage

I (Dr. Cloud) was talking to a young man one day about his girlfriend. He was thinking about getting married, and he had questions about their relationship. Several times during the conversation, he said that something she did or something about the relationship did not “make him happy.” It was clear that this was a theme for him. She was not “making him happy.”

When I asked, he said that she wanted him to deal with some things in the relationship. He needed to do some work that took effort. It was not a “happy” time….

Help Your Children Develop a Balanced View of Themselves and Others

When children come into the world, they are confused about the nature of their relationships. They do not think they are dealing with one person. In their minds, there are two mommies, not one. Or, two daddies, not one. There is the “good” mommy and the “bad” one.

The good one is the one who gratifies them. When they are hungry or needy, they protest, and the good mommy comes and relieves their stress. When they are gratified, they see this mommy as “good.” But if something they want is not forthcoming and Mommy frustrates their wish, she is seen as the “bad” mommy. . . .

How to Set Healthy Consequences for Your Child’s Boundary Breaches

meme of a child at the edge of a lake that says We give our children boundaries not to close them in and keep them under our control but to help them develop self-control.

As you navigate through life together, you’ll have ample opportunities to offer your child natural consequences when they cross a boundary or make a poor choice. For instance, you and your kid may agree that he can do his chores on the weekend, as long as they’re all done by bedtime on Sunday. If Sunday night comes and his chores aren’t done, the next weekend he’ll need to complete them before doing anything else on Friday night.

If you’ve mapped this out ahead of time, this won’t be a surprise because the two of you will have already agreed on consequences if he didn’t follow through….