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Finley Robinson

Family Friday: Give Them Relational Insurance

published16 days ago
3 min read

Hi there, it's Finley 👋🏼 and Happy Friday.

Today's story takes 3 minutes to read

Flashback: If you want to understand the big questions that your kids are asking each year of their life, click here for a revisit.


Framily

When my wife and I had two of our three children we were in a stage of social reset.

We had become younger parents than a lot of our friends who didn't have kids yet, but ...

We were desperate for others who were struggling through nap schedules, potty training, and three year old meltdowns.

We needed people who understood us and would care about our family.

Those kinds of friends are much tougher to come by than some might think.

We found a group of young parents at our church and started getting together 2-3x a month for the next 4+ years.

That group of 8 couples started with 4 kids. By the time our group dispersed many years later, we had celebrated over 20 babies being born

There was never a month for 4 straight years where one of the women wasn't pregnant in our group. It was a wild season.

Those friends became a massive part of our lives, and more importantly, they were a part of our kids lives as well.

We knew about each other's sons and daughters. We celebrated their birthdays and accomplishments.

We joked with our friend's kids when we saw them on a consistent basis.

We cared about how they were doing or what they were struggling with.

A couple days ago I had lunch with two of my good friends from that group. This weekend I'm playing golf with two more.

I recognize that what my family and I experienced may be uncommon. It can be difficult to find parent friends who share similar values that you enjoy being around.

It's even tougher to maintain those relationships throughout the season you are in.

Looking back, I appreciate and value those friends more than ever now.

They care about our family's well being as much as their own.

Having a framily (friends like family) is one of the most impactful things you can give your children.

These kinds of friends will be another adult voice in their life. They can impart wisdom, give encouragement and provide a picture of another healthy family to model after.

They give relational insurance.

A few close friends, who care about your kids, can be the difference between a small hiccup and a big mistake.

There are more eyes and ears than just yours watching out for your kids.

And it works both ways. You provide that relational insurance for them as well.

So, if those kinds of friends aren't in your life, don't think yourself a failure. Instead, start pursuing them.

If you do have a community of parent friends, don't put off getting together.

Don't neglect asking them to be involved in your kids lives. Everyone will be better for it.

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Does My Son Know You?

​Jonathan Tjarks​

This past week I've been consumed by a story about a man that I have never met.

He was writer and podcaster for the sports and culture website The Ringer.​

He died of cancer this week at the age of 35, leaving behind a wife and 2yr old son.

Jonathan essentially lost his father when he was 12yrs old to Parkinson's, a terrible time for a young boy.

He wrote a powerful piece 6 months ago about his medical diagnosis, his father's passing and how he wanted to give his son something he never had with his dad, more time.

The most significant reflection he gave was what happened when his dad's friends stopped coming around. It drove him to find a community of people he could rely on.

He wrote:

Life group is a different kind of insurance. People talk a lot about medical insurance and life insurance when you get sick. But relational insurance is far more important. I didn’t need my dad’s money, but I could have used some of his friends.

Parents can give their children the advantage of "relational insurance." I've never thought of it in those terms.

It can be a life-changing gift that you can give your kids.

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