The Gift of a Listening Dad

This week we’re focusing on Father’s Day. Sadly, the experience of many teens indicates their fathers fail to listen. Research shows that mothers are far more likely than fathers to discuss problems and have close personal talks with their teenage children. As a result, both teenage boys and girls say they feel freer to go to their mothers, rather than their fathers, to “talk about anything,” to “talk openly,” “and to “tell her my problems.” When asked to choose the most likely option out of the four choices of mother, father, close male friend, or close female friend in response to the statement “This person and I always talk openly to each other,” only four percent of teenage sons and one percent of teenage daughters chose “father.” Kids will stop trying to talk if they aren’t being heard. Psychologist Paul Tournier wrote, “Every human being needs to express himself. Through lack of opportunity for it, one may become sick.” Are your kids healthy?