What Quality Time Isn't

Want to hear some really BAD ideas for how to spend quality time with your children?

I'm Dr. James Dobson with Focus on the Family, and a couple friends of mine named Greg Johnson and Mike Yorkey have come up with a few examples of how not to relate positively with your kids.

  • Have a football game on while you try to play Monopoly with your children.
  • Read the paper while "helping" them with their math homework.
  • Drive them to their scout group and sit in the car reading a magazine while the den leader shows them how to tie knots.
  • Take them to your office on Saturday to color, while you work.
  • Practicing your golf shot at your local high school sports field -- and having your children chase after the balls when you're done.

Yes, there are several ways to fake it -- appearing to care and "be involved" when you're really just baby sitting. But I can assure you of one thing -- your kids will not be fooled for long. They can see through adult pretenses with something like x-ray vision. And they will remember that you weren't there for them when they needed you most. Take it from one whose kids are now grown. Your children will be gone before you know it and off into a world of their own.

Someone said, "Love is giving somebody your undivided attention." Quality time isn't a compromise between your kids and something else -- it's being with just them, 100 percent. And that's what good parenting is all about.

This is Dr. James Dobson with Focus on the Family.

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