Thoughts On Raising A Young Family, Safely

We have so much to be grateful for in the United States. Despite what may or may not be happening in domestic politics and no matter what your opinion on that may be, we’re still lucky enough to live in a society that trumps a robust and solid constitution and societies that still prize community values and that wonderful, warm hospitality that Americans are very well known for.

But, that doesn’t mean that we don’t have our issues, and this means that being parents to young children or worse - teenagers in a society that seems increasingly polarized on a range of topics can be difficult.  It’s not always easy to know what the right way of raising a young family can be.

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“Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.” ― James Baldwin.

Every parent knows how terrifying the role can be; it feels like your children go from newborn to driving their first car in a New York minute. While we all enjoy more excellent connectivity and broader access to information and systems that can aid in our personal safety, the singular most effective method in raising a safe family and switched on has always been and will always be - communication.

Maintaining open and free-flowing communication with your children that is at once age-appropriate and practical is the foundation for everything else. When your kids know that they can call you no matter what and that your number is always programmed on speed dial, you’ll sleep a little more securely. It’s never an easy tightrope keeping your family safe, but some tricks can help.


We live in the age of great entitlement where we’re all born with certain inalienable rights simply by being born. While this has led to a massively privileged society, it has not been without its issues. While we all want our kids to know what their rights are and how to access those rights, it’s equally important that they learn about responsibility from a young age. This extends to teaching them how to navigate their daily lives within that framework—teaching them and encouraging them to speak up when they’re ill-treated, whether at a grocery store or in the gym or how to access a medical malpractice attorneys if they’ve received less than satisfactory service from a healthcare provider.

It might seem trite, but when they understand how to challenge authority in constructive and mature ways, they’ll be far better prepared to make it into adulthood.


Teenagers always come with their unique and quirky set of circumstances. The transition from tween to young adult is fraught with all manner of new experiences, and we all know that not all of them are useful or safe. It’s here that you want to maintain openness and availability while still being the person that makes the tough decisions. But keeping your teens involved in decision-making (even if the result doesn’t go in their favor) goes some way to mitigate the potential risk they may face in the real world.

There’s never going to be a “cotton-wool” world that ensures the absolute safety of our families; the best we can hope for is that they remember what you’ve taught them and your telephone number.  The richness and diversity of life mean that we want the very best for our kids, but we can also provide them a soft landing space when it doesn’t always work out.

Photo by Brett Sayles from Pexels

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