Help Your Children Develop Lasting Relationships

littlekidsbookWhat are you and I  teaching our children about how to develop healthy and lasting relationships?

I asked my friend, Lori Wildenberg  of FirstCorinthians13Parenting  to share on my blog how we can help our children have healthy relationships and a lasting marriage someday. This is her advice:

Parents set the stage for how their children view marriage and family life.

As our kids grow, we want them to develop healthy and lasting relationships. Most of us hope to be in-laws and grandparents someday. We pray for our kids’ future mates.

If you asked me if I wanted to positively impact my child’s future relationships, my answer would be YES! I’m guessing yours would be too. That’s easy. But how am I really doing on a day-to-day basis? What subtle messages am I delivering to my children about family life and marriage?

 I’ll be the first to admit, my nonverbal or verbal communication can be negative, even nasty at times.

When my kids were younger, there were days I would compete with my husband for Who Had the Worst Day. (Truth check: He really didn’t enter the contest, this was a solo game.)

Why would I do this? Did I feel a bad day meant my mom job had value? Would a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day be the reason for extra me attention? Did I want to make my husband feel guilty for working outside the home?

If I’m honest, some days, probably yes on all counts.

bigkidsbookBut…Do I want my kids to think being a mom and a wife is drudgery, hard work? (Okay there are those times, but mostly those two jobs are the BEST jobs in the world.)

As parents, if we want to make a lasting and positive impact on a child’s future relationships then we must be deliberate in romancing our spouse’s heart and a by-product will be a softened child’s heart; a heart that is open to offering and receiving love. A heart that is tender to God’s beckoning.

Here are a few subtle messages that pack a punch:

  1. Be selfless. Focus on your husband or wife rather than yourself.
  2. Be a servant. Do nice little things for your special person.
  3. Be supportive. Encourage your mate.
  4. Be sensitive. If it isn’t true or kind – don’t say it.
  5. Be sincere. If you haven’t treated your loved one well, own it. Then change.
  6. Be sold out for your spouse. Think of your partner as the All-Time best ever!

How a man treats his wife day after day, a son will copy. And… how a wife treats her husband, a daughter will emulate.

Our children are watching.

During the LOVE Month, February, 1C13P is celebrating. The FirstCorinthians13 Parent Series: Raising Little Kids with Big Love and Raising Big Kids with Supernatural Love and their companion study guides, is being formally launched. My co-author, Becky Danielson and I are so excited; so much so that we wanted to spread a little love around. We are giving away over $400 worth of gifts: books, jewelry, and one-on-one parent coaching with either Lori or Becky, both licensed parent and family educators. To be eligible for the gifts, comment on this blog post or on an article over at during the month of February. Winners will be randomly drawn each Friday and notified via email. Thank you for sharing in this special month-long event!


lori 2014Lori Wildenberg loves to encourage and support parents in their quest to be the mom or dad they want to be. Lori and her ministry partner and co-author, Becky Danielson, are licensed parent and family educators, authors of three parenting books, speakers, and founders of For more information or to connect with Lori go to or visit the 1C13P facebook page

About me

Cindi McMenamin is an award-winning author and national speaker who helps women find strength for the soul. She has nearly 30 years experience ministering to women and inspiring them to let God meet their emotional needs, grow stronger through their alone times, and pursue their dreams with boldness.


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Reply March 21, 2015

This is great! A subject near and dear to my heart:-) It was nice to read the 6 subtle messages as I do all those. I wish I had had this resource "back in the day", but I guess it all turned out well. Our family is very loving and tight knit. Our children put God first, are of great character, are choosing well in life and communicate with us beautifully. They both desire a marriage like ours. God has richly blest us! Back when I taught parenting classes, I used to tell the young Mom's, "Don't worry that your children don't do what you say, worry that they are watching you every step of the day." Our actions need to speak louder than our words!

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