Parenting with rules and relationships

A friend was in a family relations class at BYU when the professor said, “Rules without a relationship create rebellion. Relationships without rules create chaos. Rules with a relationship create maturity."

This advice is applicable not only for parenting but for employers, missionaries and, most importantly, in obtaining an ideal relationship between us and our Heavenly Father.

In my youth, I believe we trended in the direction of "rules without a relationship." Parents were stricter, they believed in discipline and relationships often took a backseat to enforcing the rules. Over the last 20-plus years, we have watched as parents have become extremely permissive, attempting to be best friends with their children, in many cases even afraid of their kids and more concerned about alienating them than enforcing any rules or boundaries. Now the tide seems to be shifting; as parents are frustrated with the laziness, disrespect or chaos they have in their homes, rules are starting to take the front seat again.

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