06 Connected Families Part1: Becoming an Emotionally Safe Parent

In episode 6 of The Mom Podcast, family experts Jim and Lynne Jackson of Connected Families share invaluable wisdom for truly connecting to the heart of the young people in our lives. Married for over 30 years, Jim has been a youth pastor, and has spent 12 years working with high risk youth. Lynne has spent 16 years as an occupational therapist in a pediatric clinic, and has experience working with sensory function in young adults. Together, they bring an honest and authentic perspective that is transformational for parents at any stage of life. As parents, foster parents, or anyone who nurtures young people, we all struggle with successfully instilling both love and accountability into our children’s lives. We want them to thrive and feel emotionally safe in our relationship. Yet, in the midst of the tensions and challenges of parenting, how do we get to the heart of our own thoughts in order to help the hearts of our children? Tune in today to Part One of “Connected Families: Becoming an Emotionally Safe Parent,” and subscribe to The Mom Podcast to get updates on the release of Part Two!



Connected Families

Connected Families Podcast

Empowered to Connect


 “Emotional safety is really about kids having the basic understanding that I am for you, not against you, as a parent. And kids can so easily get that feeling that ‘mom is just trying to control my behavior to make her life more easy’...and even if we have…good intentions to help the child calm down, or share a toy, or something like that, but if the message that they get is, ‘What’s important to you isn’t important, and your emotions aren’t important, but just this correct behavior is important’…that’s not emotionally safe. Because the child feels invalidated, they feel managed, they feel like they don’t matter, and they don’t have the opportunity to develop true wisdom versus just have their behavior managed.” Lynne

“It starts with emotional safety, and then as we are safe with our kids, we can communicate love and affection for them even in the midst of misbehavior, and that is the launching pad to helping them be accountable for their behavior and learn wiser choices.” Lynne

“Love sandwich… we need to hold our kids accountable, but if we make accountability our supreme goal, our kids detach from us, and they attach to us less. And so let’s make a love sandwich when we have to deal with their misbehavior, which is to start the interaction by saying I love you- now accountability- and then remember, I love you- so it’s like a sandwich… To start and finish with this message of love is so critically important.” Jim

“It’s about getting your heart to the place where you love your child and you’ve… asked God to guide you to, ‘How can I communicate that?’ And it might be ‘I love you’, it might be a smile, it might be just holding your arms out for a hug… some way that you reconnect and you establish that child’s value before you ask them to change what they’re doing.” Lynne

 “What’s important here is my heart of love for my child, and there are various circumstances in life that make capturing that heart, being in touch with that heart, harder than others… but if the judgment is in the heart, kids know that judgment for what it is. They don’t hear the words, they receive the judgment. So are we taking our thoughts about our kids captive to Christ’s obedience? Are we allowing our hearts to be formed into the image of Christ and the heart of Christ, even for our children? That’s hard work.” Jim

“What am I believing about myself? What am I believing about my child? And when I got in touch with those kinds of things, it was transforming.” Lynne

“When we encounter difficulties with our kids, we tend to put most of our energy to solve it into pointing our finger at the kids, and at the problem, and strategies for making the problem go away…but what’s needed first is for me to turn the finger around 180 degrees and point it here, and ask those questions of ourselves: What’s going on in me? What are the thoughts that I continually have?” Jim

“These things that we believe- we can often notice them as recurring thoughts in a conflict… to realize that they usually take the form of what we call a toxic half-truth. So there’s a coating of truth that gets us to swallow this appealing looking pill…underneath that truth is a lie…and the lie is usually about our identity and our future… We have been given an identity in Christ and we have been given a future in Christ and it is all full of grace and hope.” Lynne

“It is about taking the lies captive to the freeing truth of Christ, and that is a whole different perspective and is one that absolutely changes your parenting.” Lynne

Kaylin Quella