Talking About Current Events With Your Kids
Christian moms discuss how they teach their children to have faith and trust in God when kids are getting bullied and they hear violence in the news.
Mariel: Hello, I’m Mariel Gutierrez. Welcome to Faith and Family. We are a Christian family community that aims to provide Christian values.
There’s a feeling when you first find out that a child is entering your lives. It’s the highest joy, by God’s grace you get through the three trimesters that bring you your bundle of joy. And then you’re faced with the reality that danger is out there. Just turn on the TV, scroll through your Facebook, watch the news, you’ll know what I’m talking about. If you’re like me, once in a while it crosses your mind. It was much safer when they were in the womb. With me today to talk about the news is Jewell Buenavista and Emirik Haro. Hey, moms.
All: Hi, hello
Mariel: Doing well. How are you guys?
Emirik: Good. Good.
Jewell: This is a very interesting topic.
Mariel:Your kids are younger than mine, right? Mine are nine and six. So you have?
Jewell: Three, six, and eight.
Emirik: And then I’m on the other end of the spectrum. I’ve got nine, twelve and fifteen.
Mariel: Yeah. What’s the scariest thing as a mom that you hear in the news? Is there a kind of news out there that makes you want to shove your kids back into the womb? As painful as that sounds?
Emirik: You know, I guess terrorist bombings and shootings. Those are always very sad to hear about.
Mariel: Yeah. And it’s been one thing after another, right.
Jewell: Yeah, I had a recent experience talking about the news. You know, a lot of active shooting. It actually happened [in] my own neighborhood. I got sent home from work not too long ago, about two weeks ago, because there was a drug bust or something. So Harmony was there with me–my husband, and I said, “Okay, mommy was sent home early because there was somebody that was shot near mommy’s work, and they’re still around and the police is trying to find them.” So they were like, “What do you mean? What happened? What happened?” You know, so they’re just like, “What do you mean? What does that mean?” So this is their first time hearing something like this. I said, that’s the reason why it’s important that everybody stays inside the house until they find these people. Right?
And so I said, “Well, so what we should do right now is let’s pray so that God will protect us.” So that’s what we did. We prayed. I actually had one of them pray. One of them pray and say, “God, please protect us from these bad people.” So we prayed. And so then me and Harmony, we acted like everything is back to normal. We’re here, let’s prepare dinner and all of this.
But I did notice that my daughter, she’s older so she could comprehend a little bit more. She was asking lots of questions: “What do you mean mommy? How come? Why are they shooting people?” So she was asking all these questions. And so then, I did explain to her, but at every single explanation I always ended it with, “But girl, you know what, don’t worry. God’s gonna take care of us. God is gonna make sure those bad people will be caught by the police.” Then we went to bed, then the following day, fortunately, they caught all five of them. So the following day, the first thing that came out of my daughter’s mouth was, “Mommy, do you think the police caught those people?” It made me think about like–
Emirik: It’s still on her mind.
Jewell: She’s really thinking about it, but again, it’s the way me and Harmony. We really try to make it like it’s not a big deal. Like we need to create awareness, like they’re out there. That’s why everybody stay inside. Don’t go outside to play, you know, create awareness. But at the same time, not to panic and not to be afraid and scared. You know what I mean? It’s a hard balance, it’s a hard balance. And I’m like, “Sweetheart, do you want to pray again?” And then when I looked at the news and I saw that they caught all of them. I said, “See, sweetheart, I told you God’s gonna take care of that.” We always bring it back to God. I told her bad people get caught by God. So she was happy, and then we’re back to normal. But it was it was just the thought of–
Mariel: A good gift of faith too.
Jewell: Yeah, reality is we’re humans, we are going to be afraid, but we just have to kick it back to like, okay God’s gonna protect us. And so we have to remain calm.
Mariel: Right? Yeah. Yeah. I mean being brave essentially, like fear is still an aspect of that. Right? You have to face a fear.
Emirik: Just because you’re brave doesn’t mean you’re fearless.
Mariel: Right, exactly.
Jewell: See the challenge is we have to be careful but at the same time you don’t want them living at home 24/7.
Mariel: In a bubble, right?
Jewell: You know what I’m saying?
Mariel: Obviously scary things out there. So how do we protect them from news? Or do we try to be ahead of media? Or I mean, obviously, we can’t keep our kids in a bubble. So how do we control it?
Emirik: I am a firm believer of being upfront and honest with your kids. And preparing them for the life that’s to come. When news comes out, we talk about it. “Did you see that on Facebook? Do you hear about what happened?” And we do, we have these discussions about things like that and we do. We always bring it to God. We talk about how we have to be prayerful, and no matter what you know, trust God, because that’s the–
Mariel: Emirick, I love how you said, you let them know ahead of time what to face in life because I’m a believer of set expectations. Yeah, it’s not a surprise.
Emirik: I let my kids fail. I let my kids experience pain. My kids you know experience what it’s like to have to burn the midnight oil to get a job. You know just all that stuff because that’s life.
Jewell: Because you know one of the things that’s always in the news now too for children is bullying, you know what I mean? And I hate hate hate–what I don’t know if that’s too much of a strong word, but I dislike very much how we’re raising our kids to be such like, they complain about, “Oh they’re bullying me for–” I’m not saying bullying is good. But at the same time, you got to toughen up.
Mariel: Versus now
Jewell: Like when my kids complain about, “Oh, Ate or Jasmine called me this or Hayden called–” I said, “So what are you ugly?” Yeah, I was like, “Why are you offended? Don’t let it get to you.”And here’s Hayden, “Ate called me this.” And I said, “Are you that?” And then he’s like, “No.” Okay, then get over it, then don’t let it bother you. Yeah, I mean, because our society today it’s so like, Oh, this protector, their feelings and all this stuff. And so for me–
Mariel: Society coddles them.
Jewell: Yeah. People must think I’m again– I’m going back to being a monster. And it’s because I really want to raise my kids to be fearless.
Emirik: Resilient. Yeah. I see what you’re saying. Because the same thing, right? Kids will tell, “Kuya said I’m a liar.” “Are you a liar?” And all that he’ll say, Are you a liar? And he’ll be like, “No, who cares what he says then.”
Mariel: You know what, my kids will say things like the other is an inanimate object. They get so offended. Like I remember my daughter who’s almost ten mind you, okay? She’s like, “Massimo said that I’m an electric fan.” I’m like, “And now you are right?”
Jewell: So like speaking of like bullying, right, so then I really believe in self depth. What is it? Self deprecating humor. Okay. So then Jasmine has really bad eczema and then Hayden will make fun of her eczema. And then she’s like, “Mommy, Hayden is calling me–making fun of my eczema.” I’m like, okay. We make fun of our obvious perfections you know, so Jasmine had eczema, Hayden at the time was stuttery, I have really bad bunion feet. Harmony hasn’t really–
Mariel: He’s bald!
Jewell: No he had lots of friends. So then I started with jasmine, what do you say when somebody says, “ooh, what’s wrong with your skin?” And then she’s like, “What? I got eczema. You got a problem with that? And then we all start laughing like haha you got eczema.” Because we have to be ahead of people making fun of us. You know what I mean? Like, you have to have self deprecating humor, because if you let it get to you, it’s like–
Emirik: If you can laugh at yourself first and then no one else can like affect you. That’s pretty cool.
Jewell: The whole bullying. I’m not promoting bullying. I’m just saying at the same time, we cannot raise a society of kids that are super sensitive, every little thing.
Emirik: Many times when we do take a look at what’s happening in the world. We relate it to a lot of the prophecies that are in the Bible. These happen because that’s how it’s supposed to happen.
Mariel: That means it’s the end.
Emirik: Yeah, it’s getting close. So you know, then we remind my kids, my husband so you have to be all the more vigilant in protecting your faith. You know, there are tricks out there, there are evil people out there, that don’t have love in their hearts. And then there are tricks that the devil puts out there for you. The whole moral decline of society where it’s, it’s actually more popular than following God’s will. You know, that’s a trick. So these are tricks that are gonna happen as the end gets closer. So don’t, don’t let yourself be caught off guard.
Mariel: Well, we’re gonna tie it up right here. While we live in this world is true, anything can happen. We’re humans just like everyone else living in the human world, but the difference is we have God and He has promised us His love protection and most of all his salvation. So though yes, anything can still happen. We have the tools to overcome it all. If and when it does. Tired moms, we understand you. The moments when you’re human and you worry for your kids and their safety. We’re here for you. If you ever need a sounding board, talk to us in the comments section of the INCmedia Facebook posts of this podcast. Remember to celebrate your babies, cherish them, hold them tight, and then let them go. Let them run, love, laugh, live fearlessly. Yeah, that’s the point, right? All right. [I] want to thank my fellow tired Mama’s here. Thank you so much Jewel, Emirick, for being with us.
Jewell and Emirick: Thank you for having us.
Mariel: Aside from finding us on INCmedia.org you can catch these podcasts on iTunes and Google Play. Hang out with us again Tired Mom’s next time here on Faith and Family.