# 3 Commandment for Making a Happy Child Into Your Lifelong Friend

III: Never make sarcastic remarks to a child much less say snide or ironic things meant to put them in their place. The worst parent (aside from a neglectful abuser) is a score-settling parent.

Mea culpa!

If you want your child to trust you they can’t be thinking you’ll put them down or make them the butt of a joke they don’t even understand. You’re not competing with them or trying to be the funniest person in the room.

It should never feel risky to be with a mother or father. You should be their safest place, not a standup comic picking on an audience member.

Be a smartass with other grownups if you must. Be serious and kind with your child.

(to be continued in this space tomorrow…)

To book Frank Schaeffer to speak at your college, church or group contact him at Frankschaeffer.com 

Frank Schaeffer is a writer and author of Crazy for God: How I Grew Up as One of the Elect, Helped Found the Religious Right, and Lived to Take All (or Almost All) of It Back .

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