A lot of the problems teens find themselves in, happen in a friend’s house. As a parent, it’s hard to determine if your child will always make the right choice. You may raise good kids, but peer pressure sometimes causes them to make bad decisions. It makes sense to train up your children in the right way because they won’t always be around you (Proverbs 22:6). That way, when they’re away, what they’ve learned will help to govern their decisions.
However, the more you can keep them around, the better. If you’re the parent with the cool hangout spot, you’re better able to control the amount of trouble they get into as well as some of their entertainment choices. Also, when you’re the host, you can be sure they won’t have any access to alcohol or drugs. In addition, you’ll get to meet and know your children’s friends. Don’t worry too much about the mess they’ll make, at least then you won’t have to worry about where your kids are and if they’re safe.
So, now you’re asking, “How do I make my house the cool hangout spot?” Here are a few entertainment ideas …
Food: Make sure you have a lot to eat. It seems God might have forgotten to put a bottom on the stomach of teenagers because they eat like crazy. Find out the type of snacks they enjoy and stock up. They’ll come by and stick around once there’s plenty of free food.
Music: Pandora is a click away. If you make music accessible to the kids, like on a computer or attached to a phone, then they’ll have access to endless songs. Because they’re in your house, they’ll have to listen to the censored kind. But don’t worry, they’ll keep coming back for the food.
Movies: Make movie websites, such as Netflix, available for them to watch. Young adults love options, they also love to binge-watch videos and TV shows. And as with the music, they’ll be right in your living room so you’ll be able to hear and see everything.
Video Games: Most of the video games today are brutal. They are filled with violence and negative values. But you can make an effort to hunt and purchase family friendly video games that everyone will enjoy. You can also allow them to bring their own, but be sure to set ground rules.
Entertaining your children’s friends is a great way to keep an eye on them; you’ll also get the added benefit of seeing the type of company your children hang around. The next time they ask if they can go to a friend’s house, suggest that their friend come over instead. Be sure to keep in touch with the parents and assure them that their child is in good care. Lastly, in an effort to keep their children safe, some parents may become over-protective. So, be careful not to smother your children by overdoing it (Colossians 3:21).
How else can you make your home the “coolest pad” for your teen’s friends?