As a youth pastor, counselor and pastor who has worked with adolescents and their families for over 20 years, there is no issue that I’ve seen baffle more parents than the issue of how to establish and maintain appropriate boundaries for their teenagers. Almost every parent is concerned with whether their boundaries are too firm or too lenient. And those who aren’t concerned usually should be! Of course, the teenager will almost always push whatever parental boundaries are established, lobbying for the most lenient terms possible with statements like, “You just don’t trust me,” or “You never let me do anything.”
June Hunt, founder and CSO (Chief Servant Officer) of Hope for the Heart and radio host of Hope for the Heart and Hope in the Night, has written a great book for parents on this topic that I highly recommend. Bonding with Your Teen through Boundaries is highly relevant, having been born out of actual letters parents have written to her ministry or calls that have come in to her radio programs. The situations are real and the advice is practical and easily applicable. The book is easily accessible, with topics broken down into boundaries at home (such as back talk or breaking curfew), boundaries at school (such as missing homework and tardiness), personal boundaries (such as procrastinating and conflict over clothes and hairstyles), and social boundaries (such as lying, questionable friends, and sexual activity). In all, Hunt tackles 38 of these topics and provides hands-on “What could you do?” and “What could you say?” coaching strategies for each one. As anyone familiar with June or her ministry would expect, Hunt also provides relevant wisdom from God’s Word on each topic and information on where to find additional related resources through her ministry.
I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that the ministry I work with, TheHopeLine, is privileged to partner in ministry with Hope for the Heart, and I office in their ministry headquarters in Dallas. But neither June nor her ministry asked me to write this review. I asked Crossway for the opportunity to review this book because I believe in June’s ministry and because I know from experience that parents need help in this area. I am hopeful that parents of teens will pick up Bonding with Your Teen through Boundaries and use it to help guide their teens through one of life’s most complicated transitions.
[Disclosure of Material Connection: Crossway sent me a free review copy of this book. I was not asked to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”]