Why did we make a Family Rule Book? (Family Rule Book pdf)Adoption . Family journey . Family Rule Book . Katie . Parenting
Recently, my husband and I made a family rule book. This idea isn’t new, in fact, we based our book on one we saw on a youtube vlog. We have had family rules for a long time, but we had never considered making a book.
Why make a family rule book?
Growing up my parents took in hundreds of foster children and adopted 14 of those foster children. When Jeremy and I got married, we also became foster parents. As well as, my sisters, my aunts, and many other family members. Our family has generations of foster and adopted children. We LOVE children.
Even with all the experience I had in the foster care system there is still so much I don’t know. But one thing I do know is that children need to feel safe and secure. To create a safe and secure environment for a child, any child, but especially the neglected or abused child, starts with clear expectations. When a child is going through a change they need to know what the rules are, and they need to know the consequences of breaking those rules.
The truth is children are always going through a change. Life is full of changes.
Children are growing and their brains are developing constantly. All their energy is directed at growing and developing. Starting at the time of conception until about age 20, a person’s body and brain is in development mode. That child needs to be able to allow their body and brain to grow and develop in a safe and secure environment.
So, children have constant change in their body, mind, environment, and experiences. But we as parents can give them consistency by having clear standards and expectations with set logical consequences.
In making our family rule book we wanted to clearly outline our expectations to our children, and to anyone who may join our family.
We included important categories for our family like Sabbath, and homeschooling. But every family can customize their book for their priorities.
We also included scripture on each page to help explain our views on each topic. Scripture has all the answers to life, so we wanted to include these passages to clearly explain our reasons for each rule.
Who needs a family rule book?
We made this rule book for our family, so that our children would be able to look at it often and remind themselves of our rules.
We are sharing it here for other families to use and create their own family rule book. I think especially foster/adoptive families would benefit from a book like this. But, a family going through any kind of transition as well could benefit from a rule book. Moving, switching schools, switching from public school to homeschool, a new marriage, blending families, taking in other family members, and other changes are a great time to establish or re-establish family rules.
How to use the Rule book?
Making the book:
My husband and I went away for two days, and prayed and discussed what rules we would include in our book. Some topics other families included, like sleep overs, we chose to leave out of our book. But, other topics like Sabbath and courtship, we chose to include. If you decide to make a rule book, we encourage you to spend time thinking about what you want to include. Use our book as a cheat sheet, and create your own personal book.
Introducing your book to the family:
We sat down with our children and read through and discussed each page. Making sure they understood each rule. We also discussed ways we would handle the breaking of rules.
Maintain the rules:
We then made a special place in our living room for our book to sit out. This is a visual reminder, and also, allows us to use the book when needed to go over any rules.
When a new person joins our family, we will carefully go over the book with them one on one. We currently are not taking in any foster children and are not planning to adopt again. But, we do have other circumstances that bring people into our home. Having a large family sometimes means various family members live with us at times. Also, we want to always be available to open our home to anyone whom the Lord leads us to care for.
So take a look at our rule book. Download it and create your own family rule book. Let us know how it goes. Click on the link below to get started.
Written by Katie
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