I Want My Children to Be Happy And That’s Ok

Welcome to TUESDAY TALK!

*I’m so glad to have you join me this Tuesday for our weekly Tuesday Talk Link-Up! Before linking up, let me share with you some things I’ve been learning from one of the best parenting books I’ve read in awhile!

rgk logo by Kristen Welch

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In this brand-new book by Kristen Welch, discover how saying “no” can lead to life’s biggest “yes.”

One of the most challenging things I face is making my children happy. I really want to make them happy. My husband and I were talking the other day about this. We were reflecting on our childhood and all of the happy moments. We said: “We just want them to have a happy childhood.”

Can I tell you a secret: ITS OK! Its ok to want to make your children happy. (Quick disclaimer: You won’t succeed 100% of the time). I realize happiness isn’t the end all either. We’ve given up on the idea that our children will always be happy. Its just not going to happen. They will get mad. Or sad. But that’s life. We can’t keep them happy their entire lives. But, wanting your children to have joy is not wrong. There. I said it. Don’t feel guilty for wanting your children to be happy. Its how you go about making your children happy that’s important.

After reading Kristen’s book, I realize happiness isn’t going to be found in giving them things. I will not create happiness or joy when I buy them whatever they want. Or succumb to all of their wishes. Happiness will be found when they give. I know that. But do they? I will have to model it for them. I will have to show them how I deny my wants in order to give.

As my children get older, we want to encourage (maybe push/force) them to step out of their comfort zones and serve. Yes, simple service begins at home. The best thing to give someone is your time. I want to teach my children to give their time, money, and energy to others. Service can start now. My children are 7, 5, 3, and (almost) 3. They can begin to serve even at a young age. I’ve started letting the youngest ones set the table. I make her take her brother’s and sister’s plates to the table first. She would love to carry all of her stuff in and sit down to get ready to eat. But instead, I make her carry in everyone else’s first. I used to make them each carry their their own things to the table. Now, I have them carry someone else’s to the table.

Its small. But that’s ok. Service starts with small steps.

If I want my children to be happy, I need to teach them to give, not get. Things will not make them happy. Good experiences will not make them happy. Serving God and others will make them happy. It might make them uncomfortable, but it will not make them sad. It might make them hurt, but after it is all said in done: joy will come.

Read more about this in Kristen’s book!

I’ll be giving away a copy of the book at the end of the month! Enter to win here:

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I’m linking up here.

*Affiliate links are include in this post. Read my disclosure here.

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  1. We discuss gratitude a lot and the fact that so many in our world don’t have the most basic needs met, let alone fun extras. I love your thoughts on teaching your kids service to one another! I think we may implement that here.

  2. Thanks so much for your insightful post and for linking it up at #LMMLinkup! I am entering the giveaway because I’ve been reading so much about this book that I really hope I win. You are right when you say that desiring our children to have happiness is not a bad thing. The problem is when we choose their happiness over their holiness. It sounds like you have a great plan in place for preventing that. Blessings!

  3. This sounds like such a good book, and what good advice to have your children focused on giving rather than receiving. I hope to teach that to my son as well. I love the idea of having them set the table, because kids are such natural helpers anyway. Even my 2 year old could help set out napkins and silverware!

  4. How beautiful ♥ It truly does start with what we model to them… And I’ve gained far more by sharing experiences and talks with my son than in just giving him stuff : ) Thanks for a great reminder and a suggestion of an awesome book it sounds like!

  5. We struggle with this. I have a seven and four year old and we are going through a difficult time in our life so we live with my parents and sister. This can be very challenging at times and I have to learn to be grateful because I tend to forget how good I have it. Even though my husband is in prison and we live with my parents we are still lhealthy and have a roof over our heads. Please pray for me as I try to more grateful and hoping my kids will see the good. I try to teach them that we may not have the new or best things but we have each other and that is all that matters.

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