Thursday, May 17, 2018

Westfall House Rules

Those of us raising kids are attempting this task in a much different environment than we were raised. The technology age has its upsides and....major downsides. Inspired by the book "Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters," my wife and I have organized and articulated our approach. I realize these rules might not jive with everyone's convictions, but they're a good starting point for us. If anyone has more wisdom/experience/feedback, we're open ears.

The primary principle I learned from that book is that our protective instincts are there for a reason. Our children might not appreciate the guidelines right now, but eventually they will find comfort in the fact that we are protecting them in love. It's a profound and noble responsibility.

"Authority is not a threat to your relationship with your daughter -- it is what will bring you closer to your daughter, and what will make her respect you more. In fact, girls who end up in counselors' offices, detention centers, or halfway homes are not girls who had authoritative fathers. Quite the opposite. Troubled young women spend most of their time in counseling describing the hurt they felt from fathers who abandoned them, retreated from their lives, or ignored them. They describe fathers who failed -- or were afraid-- to establish rules. They describe fathers who focused on their own emotional struggles rather than those of their daughters. They describe fathers who wanted to avoid any conflict and so shied away from engaging their daughters in conversation or challenging them when they made bad decisions."
- Dr. Meg Meeker, Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters

Westfall House Rules

  1. Love the Lord your God. You are expected to attend and be involved with our church family. 
  2. Do not take the Lord’s name in vain or use foul language. 
  3. Love your neighbor as yourself, aka ‘Golden Rule’. Treat others, including your siblings, the way you would like to be treated. 
  4. Electronics in rooms - used for music and audio books only. Only exceptions are when you are sick and quarantined. 
  5. Electronics are shut off at 6pm. Movies or TV sporting events with the family after this time are acceptable. 
  6. TVs are not allowed in rooms. Only exceptions are sleepovers - and the TV must be returned the family room the next day. 
  7. Shut off lights in your room, closet, and bathroom when unoccupied. 
  8. One sport or activity at a time. 
  9. You are expected to do your best and excel in school - Col. 3:23 
  10. Chores lists will be done. You will contribute to household projects and maintenance.

Down the Road: 

  1. No social media until 14. One app, monitored by parents. 
  2. No dating until 16 - just the two of you going to a movie etc. 

Revised 5/17/18