It has been more than 10 years since I wrote the first version of The Dad Connection. I’ve recently re-written and edited some portions to be more relevant and current. Its now published by Floating Heart Press. And so, with this new edition comes a new blog – that important opportunity to share specific relationship elements that are building blocks and supports for strong parent/child relationships. I’ll drop by with some thoughts every couple of weeks. I hope you will respond, and we can continue the conversation.
Generating respect from our kids is a process. It has to begin with respecting them first!! This starts at the very beginning. I now witness my boys building their own lives based on their evolving values and preferences. It is very interesting to see the differences between each of them and me, some fairly significant.
Some values which I ushered into their young lives have been well established and others have retreated to the background. What is most interesting is that they are choosing their own foundational values for themselves, which is good and satisfying to see.
For the first 15 or so years of witnessing their little personalities emerge, I was never quite sure which of the hundred interactions and exchanges that we had together would impact them the most. As their own understanding and perceptions start to take shape in their early 20’s, many of their operating values become identified. I have to respect this for it was a big part of my ‘teaching’ when they were young. And let’s face it, we are ‘teachers’ when they are young.
Today as they move into their young adult lives our conversations focus on their relationship challenges which are more and more important to them. This is great for me because I can refer to my book regularly and apply the same kinds of ‘relational-ship’ understanding that I had with them when they were young. It is not foreign, and they can remember the referred experience personally and directly. I do not want them to just do it because I said it. I want them to form their own opinion and feelings using our long and genuine relationship as a guide. The most important thing to me is that they truly understand and respect that “Relationships are built . . . they just don’t happen”. This understanding is the principle and foundational take away from my book. This newer version has more of that perspective. I hope you enjoy it.