Wednesday Wisdom Tip – How to Start an Advice Sharing But Not Preaching Conversation

There is a painful reoccurring story; you’ve probably heard it too.

Good girl falls for bad guy.

I can’t tell you how many times I have received prayer requests from moms, broken-hearted over their daughter’s new boyfriend. The type of guy she had always taught her girl not to go for.

And her daughter agreed…for a long time; or at least it seemed like a long time to the girl. Then the waiting for the godly type of guy got too long…and she went for what was going for her.

With two daughters now 18 and 16, not to mention a son who is 21, have I either felt the pain of relationships that were less than best for my child or have had the fear of one.

But you don’t just march into your daughter’s room and dive right into a conversation of this sort.

“Don’t fall for a bad guy” just isn’t a great conversation starter.

So how is a mom to go about beginning these important but difficult talks?

Begin by asking for her advice.

“Why do you think this happens to girls?”

“What can a girl do to prevent falling in love with a guy that isn’t good for her?”

Then listen.

You might just find yourself surprised! Your girl might pull out of her heart truth and you’ll be the mom who feels comfort.

And if she doesn’t seem to know how the Bible would answer the question you have posed, be ready to give her the answer, from God’s perspective.

When you show respect for your child’s opinions and you demonstrate value in what they say, in time, you’ll find that respect and value coming right back at you.

Now…off to the DMV so my youngest can take her driver’s license test! These monumental days seem to be coming too often and too fast!



  1. Thanks for the great advice! I often find it hard to trust my teen, or take for granted she may have absorbed some amount of wisdom from her short amount of years.
    Good luck at the DMV! We are close to that stage, and I just don’t want to go there! lol

    1. Lynn Cowell says:

      She got it! My last one…now they’re all driving!

  2. This is so relevant to the stage I’m in right now! I too have a 21 yr old son (in college), 18 yr old daughter (getting ready to graduate hs) and my youngest daughter will be 16 in less than a month! Thank you once again for sharing what God has put in your heart. You’re truly a blessing.

  3. Thanks for this tip. My mum is struggling with my teenage younger sister who has now been expelled from school because of drugs (weed). She’s at her wits end and I believe this tip may just help her get through to my sister who is hanging out with the ‘bad boys’ and getting into all sorts of bad situations.

    1. Lynn Cowell says:

      I hope it helps, Bianca!

  4. It is sooo important to talk to your daughters about guys. I grew up in a wonderful Christian home, but my mom never talked to me about guys, etc, and in craving acceptance and love, I fell for one wrong guy after the next. Now I’m married to one, and I can tell all the young girls, that “bad boys” seem like fun to be with until you have children. It is not fun to be a mature mother, home raising your babies, and have your huband still acting like he’s 21, staying out all night with friends and wasting your hard earned money on beer and partying. It is no fun to sit alone in church year after year, and have to make excuses to family and friends as to why your husband never joins you for activities because he would rather be with his friends than his family. You see, we grow up, and until they surrender to God, they stay back where they were when you fell for them. So moms, please teach your daughters how they should be treated and what to look for in a man. You will save her plenty of heartache…

    1. Lynn Cowell says:

      Thank you so much for sharing, Laurie! Lord…help our girls to hear us!

  5. Lynn, I especially liked your idea of asking their advise or opinion on :

    “Why do you think this happens to girls?”

    “What can a girl do to prevent falling in love with a guy that isn’t good for her?”

    You can learn a lot with open ended questions like this. These kind of questions open the door to response.

    1. Lynn Cowell says:

      Julie has always said you were the best at this, Linda!

  6. Thank you! My daughters (13 & almost 15) aren’t dating yet or interested in it but a friend of my older daughter is. She talked to me about her sisters recent breakup and I wasn’t sure how to handle it. Especially since neither girls are believers. I love the idea of asking them and not just advising. It’s really hard to do sometimes but I really appreciate the specific questions.

  7. In Hi school, I chose wrong guy and wound up pregnant at 18 yrs. old. It turned my life upside down ! I grew up in the church and I ruined my family name. There was some horrible years to follow.(yes, I received forgiveness..but years later) I have not seen the father for almost 20 years now. But God did bless me with a good man. We got married a few years after my pregnancy crisis and are celebrating our 20th anniversary. Marriage in general is hard, life is hard. I want my kids to make good choices so they don’t have to pay consequences like I did. Our kids are exposed to so much these days. Its difficult to talk about these delicate topics, especially when you feel so uncomfortable. Sometimes I lack the words and am worried about their response. So thank you for your encouragement. When you share specific concerns, it really helps give me the courage to have the talks I need to have!
    I have sons (24 & 16) … daughters (14 . and 12).

    1. Lynn Cowell says:

      Shelly, I am so glad this post was helpful to you. So often, I feel like the Holy Spirit just gives me what I need (questions to ask, etc.) right on the spot. Other times, the words just don’t seem to be there. Holy Spirit, we need you so much in helping to raise these precious children!

  8. Thank you so much for this post. I am in the midst of a time where a chat with my 15 year old is necessary. Not just about chatting with the ‘wrong guy ‘ on Facebook but also the wrong friend, someone that is exposing her to things she does not need and questioning her values. I was at my wits end to how I was going to approach this topic without her feeling I don’t trust her, which I do but being exposed to friends and ideas and certain types of conversations for long enough could be a bad influence. you have given me a beautiful way to start this very delicate conversation. Thanks again.

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