I'm sure you have seen in the news recently the attorney who attempted the "affluenza defense". In essence his defense was that his client's parents where too wealthy. Their son had not been forced to learn the lessons of the real world. While most of us would never consider such a defense, there are things we can learn from the "affluenza boy". Why did he not understand the consequences of his actions? Why had he not experienced normal maturity?
Dr. Tim Elmore (who as you may know is my favorite author on relationships) says the single biggest missing ingredient for maturity is ownership. Ownership means that my life is my own and therefore it gives me both freedom and responsibility.
Usually our kids want the freedom but not the responsibility. Maturity is realizing those two go together. As parents our job is to link the two. When a child asks for freedom, take the time to explain the responsibility that goes along with it. In this way they will grow to understand that relationship.
Of course in our own lives we need to ensure that we are also taking responsibility for our actions as well. As adults, that's something we have learned along the way and need to demonstrate for them.
Blessings on your parenting,
Tim Miesner, Principal