“He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm” (Proverbs 13:20).
Friends are one of the most important parts of any teenager’s life. A teenager’s main source of self-esteem and confidence comes from his or her friends. Even more than parents, friends are a strong influence in molding the thought patterns and actions of a teenager at this stage of life.
What do you do when your teen’s friends are not good for him or her?
Forbidding your son or daughter to see close friends probably just entices them to see these people secretly.
Here are some things you can try instead:
Make it easy for your kids to see the friends who are good for them. As much as possible, say yes when your kids want to be with these young people. For instance, make sure your teenagers have pocket money for youth group activities at church. Give them more freedom when they are with this kind of group.
When your teens are with the friends you do not like, be certain that all of their activities take place in your home or someplace where you have control. Maybe your influence will encourage this teenager to change. Or, your son or daughter may finally see your point of view as they watch you being kind to their friends.
Pray that God will direct your child’s relationships.
The Bible acknowledges how important godly friends are. Proverbs 13:20 states it plainly: “He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.”
Kimberly Snider is a missionary to the Philippines.
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Copyright (c) 2005 Women’s Ministries of the Assemblies of God.