I am Their Parent – Not Their Friend

parent not a friend

Find serenity by realizing that being a parent is harder than being a friend to your children, but it is so worth the effort.

It is always fun to listen to people give advice on how to raise children. I avoid it as much as possible. I share my ideas, thoughts and philosophies on child rearing, but I rarely offer unsolicited advice on parenting. Even in this article, I am not giving advice on parenting, but having a conversation with myself about an idea that I often hear from other parents.

I have no desire to be friends with my children. If they were not my children, I would not hang out with them. We would not meet for hot chocolate, go out for meals or meet at the library to chat. They are years upon years younger than I. We don’t share a significant interest in current literature, music, art or politics. This is not to say that they are not smart, brilliant, wonderful children. In fact, they are all that and more. My children are indeed fascinating children that any parent would be indeed fortunate and blessed to claim them.

However, my children are not my peers. We don’t have a shared volume of life experiences, professional experiences and personal experiences that would be the basis of a good and lasting friendship. My children are a blessing from God. The church girl in me sees my children as precious gifts from God that I have a responsibility to be a steward over and to raise to be good and productive citizens.

Stewardship is not a role that friends play for one another. Stewardship is commonly defined as management or care for something. As a parent, my job is to manage my children’s growth and development. It is my job to care for them. Fortunately for me, it is a joy to do the work I must do in order to raise my children. Parenthood is a joy and a source of great happiness. I am glad I have been blessed with the opportunity to be a parent. It is something my husband and I dreamed about for years before it became a reality.  In this case, reality has been far better than the dream and again, it is a blessing.

The following is a list of things I do for my children on a daily basis:

  • Pray constantly that they grow up to be the kind of people God would have them be
  • Prepare three or more meals a day
  • Wash and prepare laundry
  • Review homework assignments
  • Attend parent teacher conferences
  • Arrange play dates
  • Manage health care
  • Supervise activities online
  • Approve or deny requests to interact with friends


I have no responsibility to do these things for my friends. In addition, if I am to be honest, I must add that I have no desire to do these things for my friends.  I enjoy having friends and I enjoy having children. In my world, the two are not the same group of people.

Use Verizon FIOS to Help You Succeed in the New Year

While I thank my partner Verizon FIOS for sponsoring this article, all thoughts and opinions in this article are strictly my own.

As the new year begins, remember, you don’t have to do it on your own and Verizon FIOS can help you to succeed in the new year.

All over the world as people celebrate the end of one year and the beginning of another, all kinds of plans, resolutions and dreams are being made. It is a natural thing. After all the new year means new life, new start and new chances.  It is common to think that when you start something new you have to pull yourself up by your bootstraps, put your big girl panties on and jut go for it alone.  I encourage you to make smart plans and use Verizon FIOS to help you make your New Year’s resolutions success stories by the end of the year.

It all begins with SMART plans. When plans or goals are SMART, they are:

Time Bound


When a plan is specific, it has sufficient information to make it clear to the reader what is that is planned. It is the specifics that help make sure the action is moving forward in the right direction. By adding specific details to your plan, it is easier for you to start moving towards where you want to end the journey.


When a plan is measurable, there are indicators that permit one to gauge whether success has been reached.


When a plan is attainable, it is one that can be achieved with the hard work and determination. If a plan is attainable it can reasonably be accomplished. Attainability cannot always be determined in a vacuum. Sometimes we need to look at the other parts of the SMART plan to determine if a goal is attainable.


When a plan is realistic, it is logical that it will come to pass. When a plan is realistic, it makes sense that it will come to pass. Realistic plans give you ideas and information sufficient to make it reasonable to believe the plan will come to pass.

Time Bound

When a plan is time bound, there are clear and identifiable time barriers to starting and completing the plan. SMART plans do not have indefinite or undetermined start and end dates.

You may not be able to create a SMART plan on your own. You may have to do some research to make it happen. If you have Verizon FIOS, there is no reason to worry. The super fast internet speed will help you do all the research you need to make your plans as SMART as they need to be.

What if you do not have a SMART plan? No problem, Verizon FIOS is still there to help you. Check out characters in your favorite movies and television shows for inspiration. Verizon FIOS has several television packages so you can pick just the channels you want. There is no reason to pay for stations you don’t want or will never watch. Don’t forget the On Demand library of movies and television shows. If you are like me, the right movie can set the mood for making your kids behave, pushing you to get the work done in time to meet your deadlines or setting the mood for romance with your spouse.

If you cannot figure out what to do to make life better for yourself and your family in the new year, check out an old favorite movie and let the characters inspire you. The FIOS On Demand library is HUGE and youy are sure to find something that will help inspire you to do what you need to do to be successful in the new year. For example, Celine Dion’s song, “Because You Loved Me” inspired me to be a better and more helpful person in the new year. So of course I turned to the FIOS On Demand library of movies and found “Up Close and Personal” which features the song. I found the movie On Demand, but could not find it on Netflix, Amazon Video or any of the streaming video sites I normally use. So it was Verizon FIOS for the win.

Once you have created your smart plan, used the internet to revise it and even found a movie or television show to keep you pumped on and on focus, you can use the third wing of the Verizon FIOS package – the telephone service and accountability partners. So many people are stuck to their smart phone or hiding from their smart phones that they forget the power of the reliable landline phone. Use your landline phone to get an accountability partner to help you stay focused and on target the upcoming year.  Pick a couple of friends and recruit them as your accountability partners. Tell them that whenever they get a call from your landline number they are to encourage you to stay on target with your SMART plan. Set up times once a week for a two minute call about your SMART plan. Nothing else gets discussed during these calls. Make the calls two minutes or so. That is long enough to get on, push each other to move forward with your SMART plan and then hang up. You may be tempted to stay on the phone a little longer because the call clarity is excellent with the Verizon FIOS phone service. But don’t. Hang up after two minutes of accountability business and then call each other back to talk and enjoy each other’s friendship.

As you begin the new year, don’t forget:

1. Make your plans SMART
2. You don’t have to do it all on your own
3. Use Verizon FIOS’ amazing internet, television and telephone service to succeed in the new year