HOW DO I TALK TO MY 16 YEAR OLD SON ABOUT CHRISTIANITY
MOST HELPFUL POSTS
Ev - posted on 10/07/2013
And maybe you are talking about it way too much. You need to say your peace and then step back and let him think about things and figure out some stuff on his own and allow him to come back to you and ask questions. If you keep nagging him about it, he won't listen and will tune you out. There is so much any person child or teen or adult can take when being talked to death about a subject. If you have raised him with Christian values, raised him in that faith, and taught him what is important, you have to trust that. You have to trust he will come to his own conclusions about this and that they are the ones you want.
I have a 16 year old son myself. A few years ago, during a worship service when they did testimony time, he asked in front of ALL THE CONGREGATION about God and His Existence. I was not there as he was with his dad and step mom. My son wanted proof. At this age range, its important to know that the kids are going to question things and seek answers. It is also a need to know that they are trying to find out who they are and what they are in comparison to the rest of the world. His dad and step mom were appalled and proceeded to believe he was atheist. I do not believe that he is but he is trying to figure out things in his beliefs and so on. I am giving him the time to do this and come to his own conclusions. He is almost an adult, so my continued pursuing of the Faith and all is only going to be a nagging thing to him.
As with your son, he is almost an adult and its time to let him learn about things in his own way and on his own terms.
It is also said that a lot of us left the path and came back. Let him live his life.
â« Shawnn âªâ«â« - posted on 10/08/2013
You can't push your religion on him, even if he is your kid. He needs to make his own decisions in this regard.
If you're newly converted or "born again", I know that the urge is strong to have everyone agree with you, and be on the same page, religion wise, but it's not going to happen.
Back off of him. If he has formed an opinion, he's entitled to it.
My husband and I are both non denominational Christian. We encourage belief in God, we encourage helping others, prayer, and generally try to lead a good life. If our kids decided tomorrow that they wanted to disagree with us, we'd be disappointed, but would realize that they are not little "mini me's", and by forcing it down their throats we're more likely to turn them away than convince them.
Mary - posted on 10/08/2013
At his age, you need to take a step back from this, and stop trying to lecture him or force things down his throat. It's just going to make him even more resistant to what you are trying to convince him of.
Faith, by definition, is a belief in something that does not rely on concrete proof. It is not something you can force someone to have.
All you can really do at this point is to live by example. IF he asks questions, answer them honestly and openly - but let him be the one to bring the topic up. Otherwise, you and your husband need to just practice what your preach in your daily lives. Be kind and loving to everyone you encounter. Help those in need without judgement, qualification, or an expectation of reward. Accept and love your son unconditionally. In other words, BE the Christian that you want him to be.
Cecilia - posted on 10/08/2013
You do realize that pushing a subject on anyone is going to cause them to stop listening right? How about go ahead and try to listen to his side. You want him to listen but you aren't willing to do the same?
I was also raised Catholic. Around 12 I was really into my religion and faith, usually in church 3-5 times a week. By 17, not so much. By 25, not at all. The reason why? Asking questions about that religion gets finger wags. That made me feel a bit disrespected. I felt i was treated like a dumb kid asking stupid questions. Any idea I got in my head made me bad in a way, because a true Christian doesn't question. I was told things such as "it's called faith" "it happens for a reason" just isn't good enough for a teen mind.
All the shaming me for not believing the way others seemed to did was push me away. A few years ago a friend and I were speaking about religion. I asked her a few of the questions I had in my mind that never got an answer. She actually was able to answer some. She said she had some of the same questions but she had a very open grandmother who was willing to give her the answers.
Here's what I mean. I always wondered why it is okay to praise Jesus because isn't that putting another before god, thus it is bad. As a child people would tell me that isn't putting a god before him. It was his son. That still in my mind didn't excuse the fact. My friend said this, Jesus is part of the trinity therefore he is the same as god. It isn't like me and my children as humans.It's more like someone calling me by a nickname doesn't mean they aren't talking to me.
If you can't have the patience with him on his ideas and thoughts, you're going to push him away and out of the religion.
I have essentially become atheist through my experiences in life. I have learned to allow my children free thought and to explore their own religious needs. Out of my older children one is exploring Buddhism, and another Christianity. One is content not having not having a religion. It does make for interesting dinner conversation. They are allowed to question and think logically about what they believe and why. I will always put my relationship with my children above everything else, including my own religious beliefs, or lack there of.
Jodi - posted on 10/08/2013
Your son is entitled to his beliefs too. You know how it is FOR YOU, but you can't dictate to someone else how it is for them. That's the point of Christianity, it is about faith and belief, and for everyone, this is different. You need to allow your son to explore his own feelings, faith and belief or you are going to end up pushing him away. You can't tell someone else how to believe, including your own children. Your son is 16. He is almost an adult. He is certainly old enough to form his own views on the issue. My bet is that if you start to respect his opinion (that does not mean you have to agree with it, just respect it), he might start to respect yours. Part of your role as a parent is to listen. It seems you are not doing much of that.
Gena - posted on 10/08/2013
I know alot of people that cant stand when somebody tries to convince them into believing their religion.For me the more someone tries to convince me that their religion is the only way the more it honostly just puts me off. I believe everybody has the right to believe in what they want and not what their parents or anybody else want them to believe. My mom also kept going on with this subject when i was that age..she finaly realized that it was a waste of time talking to me about it all the time.
I dont mind if i get bashed for saying this.
All i can say is i am a happy person and i respect every religion,i have friends with all kind of religions and they all know that they dont have to try to convince me into their religion and they also respect that just like i respect their believes.
At the end of the day i am happy when i can go to bed knowing i didnt hurt anybody,tried my best to be kind and helpfull and respect people.I dont believe i am a bad person for not having a religion. Let your son decide for himself what is best.
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