Daddy, Are You Clapping?

The "Audience of One" that Matters to Your Child

Every child wants their father’s approval – a child of 3 wants this and a child of 33 wants this. It is an absolutely foundational element in building healthy self-esteem in the child. And that helps determine both how much the child later achieves and how happy the child is throughout life’s journey.

Here’s how one girl expresses this deep need in every child. “I stand before the mirror, a 15 year-old girl, and belt out a song. Alone in that adolescent haven, my bedroom, I shed the self-effacing posture that is my daily accessory, throw back my shoulders, toss back my hair, and sing my heart out. ‘I’m the greatest star, I am by far, but nobody knows it.’

Behind the singing teenager’s reflection, there is a silent audience of one, one who, unlike all others, appreciates my starlike qualities. Here, in the cherished privacy of my room, I entertain a fantasy, and acknowledge before the mirror my longing for his applause.

Sometimes, now that I am grown and speaking of such things, I still find myself wondering, at the end of a chapter for instance, ‘Daddy, are you clapping.’”

Every child wants to hear – needs to hear – father’s applause, no matter what age.

Daddy, are YOU clapping?

Who Is Raising Your Child?

Who really is?

Fact: the average American child spends 7.5 hours a day watching videos of various kinds. Fact: the average child spends less than one hour a day with dad.

Question dad: who is raising your child? Who really is?

One thing seems fairly certain. Children by default learn values today largely from the videos they watch – in essence, from the people in the entertainment world who are writing and producing the videos and video games.

Ask yourself: do these videos that your child watches show love, compassion, grace? It is little wonder that so many teens and young adults are longing and searching for these qualities in their lives.

Down through most of history, a child learned right from wrong primarily from their father’s training and instruction. This sense of right from wrong – values generally – are what will guide your child the rest of his/her life. Wouldn’t you want your child to have moral and spiritual values that you have imparted to them – rather than some entertainment writer/producer? If so, make the commitment today to start instilling these values in your child.

You can get a terrific jumpstart by taking our online training video Basic #5 right on this site which covers – Instilling Moral and Spiritual Values in Your Children.

And share with other dads how your child is doing in this area of daily video watching.

Building Character in Your Child – Part 2

it's not too late to make this key resolution

In the last few days of 2014, I wrote about building character in your children – and how that would make a great resolution for 2015.  The offer to you dad still stands.

Just ask yourself:  what more could I want for my children in 2015 than to have them develop good, strong character?

So you agree this is vitally important.  But what do I, as dad, do?

To have children of good character, dad, the most important thing for you to do is to model what you would like your children to become.

Day by day, our personhood sets the tone for our parenthood. Do you want children who can love unconditionally? Love them and their mother unconditionally. Do you want to raise hope-filled children? Be hope-filled.

In short, live a life and life-style worthy of your child’s emulation.

And be very committed in your efforts. The “heart” you have as a dad is infinitely more vital to your children’s future character, values, and spiritual beliefs than any child-rearing tactics or mechanics.

Dad, this is an awesome responsibility. But I can assure you that you will experience tremendous joy from seeing each child develop into a young man or woman of good character and great moral integrity!

Remember that If you are interested in helping your children develop good character, consider taking our online video training in Basic #5 “Instilling Moral and Spiritual Values”.