Every home should have its own set of family rules. Family rules simplify explanations, clarify expectations, and create a safe environment for your children and their friends. We have our list of family rules taped to the refrigerator. I copied this list down a long time ago from somewhere, and these rules have served our family well over the years.
FAMILY RULES LIST
1. Tell the truth.
2. Treat each other with respect.
- no yelling
- no hitting
- no kicking
- no name-calling
- no put-downs
3. No arguing with parents.
- We want and value your input and ideas, but arguing means you have made your points more than once.
4. Respect each other’s property.
- Ask permission to use something that doesn’t belong to you.
5. Do what Mom and Dad say the first time.
- without complaining or throwing a fit!
6. Ask permission before you go somewhere.
7. Put things away that you take out.
8. Look for ways to be kind and helpful to each other.
We have also made it clear to our children that the family rules follow them wherever they go. These are not just rules for them to follow at our house. They are family rules. Our children represent our family wherever they go, and we expect them to behave accordingly.
(Updated 12/26/2008: Thanks to commenter G.H. below, I have located the source for this list. It comes from the book New Skills for Frazzled Parents: The Instruction Manual That Should Have Come With Your Child, by Daniel G. Amen, p. 67.)
What do you think about having a list of family rules? Do you have a similar list in your home? How has having such a list been helpful to you (or not)?
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