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7 Crucial Things To Tell Your Child Before You Die

7 Crucial Things To Tell Your Child Before You Die

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This is not another, ”If you don’t do this, you are a bad parent” kind of article.

Because I’m sick and tired of being bombarded with such messages everywhere.

I think we parents get more criticism than we get support.

So, this is not another of such criticisms, but just a list of suggestions of things our children will benefit from hearing from us. 

As parents, one of the most powerful legacies we can leave our children is the wisdom gleaned from our own life experiences.

This isn’t just about leaving a material inheritance, of course, that’s important; it’s about passing on emotional, moral, and spiritual riches that can guide them through their own life’s journey.

And the aim is not to instruct but to provide a lantern of wisdom that your child can carry forward into their own lives.

Here are 7 essential conversations I think every parent should have with their child:

7 Things To Tell Your Child Before You Die

1. Tell Them The Things You Are Proud Of About Them

things you should tell your child before you die

”I am proud of you, or I am proud of ….” is one of the most powerful statements your child can hear from you.

Expressing pride in your child’s achievements, character, and the person they’ve become is an empowering and affirming act that can build their self-esteem and confidence.

It’s about more than accomplishments; it’s about who they are as individuals.

So, tell them you’re proud of the unique qualities they possess.

Maybe it’s their unwavering kindness towards others, their resilience in the face of adversity, their ability to find joy in the smallest things,  or their inner strength and determination.

No matter what it is, telling your child you are proud of them will stay with them for a lifetime because it shows you’ve been observing them, and you also know their strengths and weaknesses.

Most importantly, tell them that you’re proud simply because they are who they are.

Your pride doesn’t come from their achievements or strengths alone; it comes from a deep love and appreciation for them as individuals.


2. Apologize for Your Mistakes

things you should tell your child before you die

As parents, we strive to do our best, but we’re only human, and inevitably, we make mistakes.

As a mom of two kids under 6, I make an effort to say sorry to my kids whenever I’m wrong.

Thankfully, my older child is learning from that.

She says sorry so easily, and it gladdens my heart every time.

So, acknowledging your mistakes and apologizing to your child is an act of love and respect.

It teaches your child about responsibility, humility, and the power of a heartfelt apology.

You may want to apologize for times when you were too harsh or misunderstood their actions.

Maybe there were instances where your expectations were too high, or you compared them unfairly to others.

These might have caused unintentional hurt or pressure.

If you weren’t as present as you wish, maybe work kept you away, or personal struggles consumed your time, you can apologize for those missed moments and the times you didn’t give them the attention they deserved.

Don’t assume your children don’t remember these things.

They do!

The day my mom told me she was sorry for not supporting my career path and that she’s now grateful I didn’t listen to her and my dad and stuck to my decision anyway, I was so happy.

She’s still alive, and I’m glad I got to hear that from her.

It meant a lot to me.

When expressing your apologies, be sure they are not just empty words but ones that come from a place of deep reflection and understanding.

Also, express your love and your intention to do better.

You’re not only mending past wounds by apologizing, but you’re also showing your child that everyone, including parents, can make mistakes and that taking responsibility for those mistakes is an act of courage and integrity.


3. Things You’re Most Proud of 

things you should tell your child before you die

These days, we find it easier to share our proudest moments with strangers on social media than with our own children.

It’s essential for your child to know about your proudest moments, as these can serve as real-life examples of determination, accomplishment, and joy.

It’s not about boasting but showing them the rewards that can come from hard work, resilience, and perseverance.

Maybe you’re incredibly proud of a degree you earned while working a full-time job, a business you started, or even a toxic relationship you quit.

I look forward to sharing with my kids how I changed my career path against everyone’s counsel, and it paid off.


4. Share Your Life’s Regrets

things you should tell your child before you die

Just as your proudest moments can serve as positive inspiration, sharing your regrets can provide cautionary lessons that help your child make better decisions.

Being open about your regrets shows your child that it’s human to err and that it’s essential to learn from mistakes.

We all have different things we regret in life.

I regret not taking savings seriously early in life, not enjoying my single life enough, and a few other things.

Perhaps you regret not pursuing a passion because of fear or societal pressure, not saying “I love you” enough to the people who mattered most to you, not taking care of your health earlier in life, or even choosing the wrong partner.

Sharing your regrets will teach your child that it’s okay to make mistakes as long as we learn from them.

It will also guide them toward making informed decisions, thereby helping them to live a life of minimal regret.

Some parents’ regret is actually having kids.

If this is your case, I hope you don’t tell your children that.

There are things you should never say to your child, and this tops the list.


5. Share How Being a Parent Shaped Your Life

things you should tell your child before you die

Becoming a parent changes everything.

I mean everything.

It’s a transformative experience that brings forth love, joy, challenges, and growth.

Sharing how parenthood has shaped your life can help your children understand the magnitude of taking on such an important role.

Many of us weren’t told by our parents how parenting changed their lives, and we can use this as an opportunity to break the cycle.

I was particularly shocked by how distressing pregnancy and childbirth can be!

I wasn’t told.

I wasn’t warned.

So, in turn, I’m telling my children the truth.

My experience with pregnancy and childbirth was challenging, but I came out a stronger person afterward.

I hope to pass this strength on to them so they know that parenting will have its trials, but they can come out better in the end. 


6. Your Most Valuable Life Lessons

As you go through life, you accumulate a wealth of experiences, some wonderful, others challenging.

Each of these experiences offers unique lessons.

Sharing these invaluable lessons with your child is one of the most enriching gifts you can give them, honestly.

Don’t take your life’s most valuable lessons to the grave!

Share them with your child and watch them grow into a better, more mature individual

It’s a reward like no other. 

For example, tell them about the time you took a risk to start your own business.

Even if the venture didn’t succeed, the lessons you learned about courage, perseverance, and adaptability are incredibly valuable. 

You know, it’s easy to forget the power of our own experiences, and at times it may seem like they don’t matter.

But your child will be grateful for the insight you provide them. 


7. Share Your Faith and Your Journey with God

things you should tell your child before you die

This is probably the most important gift you can offer your child: a strong sense of spirituality.

It’s easy to take for granted the times we’ve turned to God in prayer or the moments of grace we’ve experienced. 

But these moments have shaped us into who we are today, and they will shape your child as well. 

In fact, as a Christian, you should introduce your child early to faith, prayer, and the idea of having a relationship with God.

Don’t wait until they are formed in their ways before introducing them to THE WAY.

‘Train up your child in the way they should go, and when they are old they will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6.

Encourage your child to explore their beliefs through Bible study, worship services, youth programs, or mission trips. 

Share your faith journey with them and encourage them to find their own path toward a closer relationship with God.

Discuss how your faith has shaped your decisions and values.

Share the rituals, traditions, and practices that are part of your spiritual journey.

Lastly, express how your faith has brought you peace and fulfillment.

When you depart, you can trust God to continue the work you have started in your children’s lives. 

Trust that God will guide and protect them on their journey and be there for them when they stumble. 


Remember, these conversations don’t have to be saved for the last minute; start them now, and continue them as your child navigates the journey of life.

And if you found this blog post useful, share it with others who might benefit. 

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things you should tell your child before you die


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