Being a teenager in 2015 can be beyond challenging and confusing. Over the last decade, it seems like everything has been put on steriods — sexuality, technology, alcohol and drug use. The iPhone, Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram didn’t exist — or were in their infancy — just a decade ago.
Parents of teens can feel like they are drowning in a sea of confusion right along with their kids. As mom to two teens, I know firsthand how difficult it can be to navigate these tricky and ever-changing waters.
Candy Gibb’s new book Rescue: Raising Teens in a Drowning Culture gives us a much-needed life preserver.
As a mother of three — two teenagers — and Executive Director of the CareNet Pregnancy Centers in Amarillo, Texas, Candy has a fair amount of experience with the challenges young people face.
In Rescue, she doesn’t shy away from tackling hot-button issues such as homosexuality, abortion, sexting and pornography. Candy uses her real-life experiences with teens to shed light on the dangers we see (and some we don’t), as well as the thought processes and inner struggles today’s teen faces.
She also brings us the voices of real-life young people, called “Lifeguards,” throughout the book, who give their honest, unfiltered opinions and insight on each subject Candy addresses.
Each chapter ends with “Treading Tips” — practical advice and tools to help parents navigate these difficult issues with their children with honesty, compassion and wisdom. I love that her advice is not “pie in the sky.” These are tools that can be used in the real world — with the very real teens that live in our households.
From encouraging mentoring relationships to healthy communication, Candy helps parents work toward laying a foundation that can withstand the crushing tide of peer pressure, sexual temptation and technology.
One of the things I appreciated most about this book is her emphasis on helping your teen make their relationship with God their own. After all, that is what is ultimately going to be their Life Preserver, not only through the difficult teen years, but throughout their entire lives.
I love this quote from the book:
“Don’t we all wish that we could download certain life lessons directly into the hearts of our children? I know I would love to spoon-feed them their decision on drugs, sex outside of marriage and texting while driving. I wish that I could take all of my life experience and all the moments I’ve shared with the Father and allow my kids to benefit from them, to nurture their spirits in the same way they did mine … The fact of the matter is that decisions become our own and we take them seriously when they cost us something. And we must arrive at the destination on our own, one step at a time.”
I have found that to be so true in my own life — and in my teens’ lives.
If you are a parent of a teen, this book is for you. If you are a parent of a preteen or younger, this book is for you. I so wish I would have read Rescue years ago. It would have been such amazing preparation for the choppy seas ahead.
We’re excited to be able to give away a copy of Rescue to one lucky reader!
To enter, simply leave a comment below telling us what you think is the biggest challenge teens face in today’s society. We’ll choose a winner on Monday, June 15th!