When Jeff is picked up by one of his friends, I often give the rules to them as well. So, several teenagers in our community have heard them too.
But just in case you haven't OR if you want to share the rules with your teenager, here they are.
No breaking any laws.
No breaking any hearts.
And no doing anything that will embarrass your mother.
We have other rules too. If you're going to live in my house, you're going to church with me. I'm not a real stickler for this one as long as I know he's going to church. But usually, he does go to church with me. I love that!
This is not our only rule that's based on a commandment. Absolutely no cursing at each other and if you're saying the Lord's name, you'd best be starting a prayer. I'm ashamed to say that we had a time in our past where we yelled a lot in our house, but no more. Home is once again a haven...for both of us.
Oh and then there's the one that is abused ALL the time. The driver is in charge of all vehicle controls, including the radio station and the volume. Jeff HATES that one. That's probably why he disregards it at will. But my car has radio controls on the steering wheel. So when Jeff gets too comfortable messing with my radio, I subtly change it back to where I want it. He gets the hint.
I found the following rules on CNN.com. I thought they were pretty interesting and thought-provoking. Enjoy.
1. You can't be in the room when I'm working unless you're working too. It's ideal because you're giving them the choice to either help with the chores or to leave. I don't know about you, but I HATE it when I'm working and the boy just sits there watching me.
2. I don't work past 8pm. Yeah, right! This one is supposed to get your spouse and your kids to help you get everyone ready for bed BEFORE bed. I don't have that issue with my 17-year old. But let's be real -- so, I don't necessarily have to work at getting my young'un settled into bed, but I work...either on things that I should have left at my day job, on one of those things that I volunteer for, on my latest writing assignment, household chores, etc. Yeah, I would totally fail at this rule.
3. You get what you get, and you don't throw a fit. It takes the old adage "life isn't fair" up a notch by spelling out both the essential truth of the inequities of life while dictating the only acceptable response...get over it!
4. Take that show on the road. Sometimes it's loud. Sometimes it's annoying. And sometimes I'm simply not in the mood to have to listen to it. So, it's fair to say, I've listened until you made your point and now I'm done listening for awhile. But the wording of the rule may work better for kids.
5. We don't argue about money. The basic point of this rule is to cut short any begging or pleading for things. When your child asks for something, you reply with a yes or a no, but you don't discuss it. If they press you, simply remind them about the policy...we don't argue about money.
6. I can't understand you when you speak like that. No whining. No screaming. No being rude. The trick is to not reciprocate your child's behavior. Simply whisper this rule until they change their way of speaking.
7. There is no such thing as boredom. My version of this one...it is NOT my job to entertain you. In this day and age, if you can't find something to do (work OR play), then you're just being lazy.