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Aug. 29, 2022

Episode 62: It's the Little Things with Dr. Corey Gilbert

In this episode, DJ talks with Dr. Corey Gilbert, an author, speaker and podcaster about what we can do as parents to teach our children the important values and ethics that they are going to need to survive in the world as adults. Listen in as they discuss being an active parent, paying attention to what they consume on social media and helping your kids see their true value and place in the world.

Dr. Corey Gilbert is the CEO and Founder of the HealingLives Center, an acclaimed author, podcaster and sought-after speaker. Every day he works passionately to support and coach individuals of all walks of life as they overcome their pain, understand who they are, and even see value in their suffering. 

• [6:44] Dr. Gilbert discusses the issue of absent fathers and that we should equip and encourage dads…
• [8:42] “Your kids are watching every move you make, even if they aren't consciously watching it. They're unconsciously learning…” 
• [19:09] Corey encourages parents to be more active in their kid’s lives, to pay attention to what they are consuming on social media and to “think through what you really want in terms of measuring stick for the goals of who your kids become?”
• [14:03] “We've misused and abused and devalued that's what the internet does.” 

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Dr. Corey Gilbert


DJ Stutz  0:13  
We think you should know that Imperfect Heroes podcast is a production of Little Hearts Academy USA. Perfect. 

You weren't listening to Episode 62 of Imperfect Heroes, Insights Into Parenting, the perfect podcast for imperfect parents looking to find joy in their experience of raising children in an imperfect world. I'm your host DJ Stutz. And I've said it before. And I'll say it again, raising kids is hard work. But the truth is that there are small things that we can do, that will make a huge difference. And Dr. Corey Gilbert is a family therapist that gets it from being present, to being thoughtful about the media, they watch, and so much more, there is so much to learn. So let's get started.

Hey, guys, you can order back to school basics, such as notebooks, snacks, and backpacks via Instacart. With delivery in as fast as one hour, just click on the link in the show notes below. And remember that you're going to get free delivery on your first order of $10 or more. And remember, you can team up with another family. And you can both order on the same account and build up the rewards even faster. The link down in the show notes is good until September 30. So give it a shot. 

One of the most difficult things about raising kids was working to teach them those important values, and then getting them to stand against what they were hearing, sometimes from friends, teachers, coaches, the media, and even sometimes those they know from church. Dr. Gilbert and I had a great conversation about what we can do as parents to help our children, how we can open the relationship, and then teach our kids the important values and ethics that they are going to need to survive in the world as adults. Let's listen in. 

Hey, everyone, I'm so glad you took the time to listen in and to join us on this important conversation. Dr. Corey Gilbert, and he is a podcaster. He is a counselor. He is a man of faith. Corey, would you like to fill us in with what you've got going on?

Dr. Corey Gilbert  2:55  
Sure. Thank you for having me excited to have this conversation. I'm a dad, first of all, and that's probably the part I'm the most proud of as three experiments as I call them. Two teenagers, teenage boys and 11 year old girl and we didn't think you could have kids. So to me, they're absolute miracles and married to my wife here in a few days, it'll be 19 years. Just what a journey that's been I've got lots of health issues, spent most of the first half of our marriage in and out of hospitals. And so that was a rough journey. When we got married. Doctors said I'd never work again. My prognosis of my future was be basically homebound and I go backpacking, I ride a Harley, I go snowboarding and skiing and I keep up with my kids. And it's pretty awesome what God's allowed me to do, despite some of the things against me, because my health is still bad, but I've learned to manage it. I'm a Professor, University professor of Sue 18 years, 17 and a half years. And I've been a therapist counselor for 22 years. So lots of stuff going on.

DJ Stutz  4:06  
So are you feel counseling people while you're teaching them?

Dr. Corey Gilbert  4:09  
Yes, I do. I've had private practice for 20 years is my 23rd year starting in July. So 20 through 22 total years that I've been doing that there's seasons where I've had to stop seeing clients because my health was so bad I couldn't function. But even then I would never miss a class I would show up to class, sit on a stool and teach my classes at the student small Christian University. I've worked out in Georgia now in Oregon, and God has just been faithful we've been through the hardest times with not only the my best friend my wife being a credible asset there and encouraged her and you know, strong strength there. But just a best friend and life journey are so

DJ Stutz  4:52  
that's amazing. Nick is there with us all the time. Whether we're willing to see him in the works or not?

Dr. Corey Gilbert  4:58  
He's still there. Yes. Oh, yes, yeah. And then a few years ago, when I graduated with my doctorate, I looked at other dads and I noticed that a lot of the dads would graduate and their teachers are there in ministry, but they would lose their kids in the process, because they were too busy. So I remember looking at that, and I was brand new data, a little boy. And I was scared to death. And I remember I just set everything to the side when it came to publishing or doing what is normal and academics. And I was like, I'm going to be a president, dad. And so I finally was it 14 years later, 1314 years later, I think I wrote my first book, when they were one another one last year. And that was, I waited all those years, because my goal was to be a very president, Dad, I'm in year 11, and Boy Scouts, my sons, so we're doing that. And then we as a family, all of our family lives on other parts of the country. So we road trip, every summer, except for this summer. But we spend a lot of time camping and a lot of time doing stuff that as a family. So that's been my intention. It was very intentional, as I looked at other dads, and I saw the absence of so many good dads that weren't weren't there. Yeah.

DJ Stutz  6:18  
And I think that's an easy trap to fall into. For moms and dads. You feel this responsibility to work and to get things accomplished and meet the deadlines, and, and all of those things. And sometimes our kids get left behind, I have to work late because my boss needs me to get done. And so you're not there with your kids.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  6:44  
Right? Yeah, and I think one of the pandemic issue issues, not from the last two years, but longer and bigger than that is the absent father. The amount of the impact of dads that are not present, we spent a lot of time celebrating moms, which I'm thankful for, and I adore my bride. We do a lot of beating up of dads, and not equipping and encouraging them and helping them because dads don't tend to have friends, oftentimes. And there can be a lot of things lacking for men that are, might even be a little more natural for their wives. And so we need to be creating a culture of men getting together men doing life together, and then having adventures together, which is for me what grabbed I gravitated towards scouts, because that's not my natural proclivity when natural places, I'd rather be in the kitchen talking to the rest of the ladies, because I'm a talker, I'm a huge emotional person. So it's kind of forced me outside of what my normal bent was into places I never would have experienced. And it all started when God gave me a son first.

DJ Stutz  7:54  
Isn't that a miracle? Yeah. Yeah. You know, one of the things I've noticed too, though, when we talk about absent that, it doesn't mean that they're necessarily out of the house, or that the divorce or whatever, that sometimes they are in the living room,

Dr. Corey Gilbert  8:14  
correct? Absolutely. Yes. Yeah, I remember my wife was at a women's conference one time, and the speaker, whoever it was said, your kids are gonna grow up and worship whatever dad worships. Mom can take the kids to church every Sunday. But dad is sitting there on his couch on as you know, rear end Washington football. In the end, the kids are gonna worship whatever that worships. Remember, that scared me to think about how strong of an impact that is. You shouldn't take it lightly. Your kids are watching every move you make, even if they aren't consciously watching it. They're unconsciously learning about the kind of man they either want to be or the kind of man they want to marry. They're watching and so what I hear from a lot of teenagers is my dad, what a sorry excuse for a person and how much that shapes them going into adulthood. When they look, they look at masculinity, and they look at marriage even and they don't want anything to do with it. Because they watched their dad who was there like you said, that was so not there was not someone to look up to.

DJ Stutz  9:17  
Well, and then we've also got the influence of media, whether it's movies or TV shows or YouTube or whatever. The majority of shows that I've watched with my kids and my grandkids the parents are shown as glittering idiots.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  9:33  
Yes, so true.

DJ Stutz  9:37  
In spite of the parents, right? Oh my kids when they were younger, there was a cartoon that they love called very odd parents Fairly Odd Parents. And it's about this kid and his parents are are just such walking jumbos. He has these two fair got parents that come and they're the ones that teach him and take him on adventures and doing all this stuff because his parents are just, and my kids love that. And I'm like, Oh, this is not good. I know.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  10:14  
No one fast forward to today. And what's happening today where the schools and government literally want to take away the rights of parents. And the influence of that is it goes back to sitcoms and TV and movies, the influence of that is kind of slowly numbed us to the fact that, you know, when our kids are at school, well, they're their problem. No, they're still yours is a parent's are washing their hands. So when we grow up on our kids are an adult, in their incompetent adult, my personal belief is mums and dads that's on you. But we don't want to be mean, we don't want to sort of it's like looking at it like from my vantage point as a current parent of kids, teenagers, middle schooler, it's on me who they turn out to be. Can I make it? Can I guarantee it? No, that's the control of false control that we think we have. We can't make them but we point the direction, whether it's in areas of faith, what their priorities are, their identity being wrapped up in their instrument, or their sport, or a grade. And those are unhealthy. Those are not measuring sticks. I am a C and D student. When I was in high school, I was a C and D student in college. And then, in college, my professor sat me down my junior year and said, You are not going to graduate, you're not talented enough, I was a music major. They said you're not going to make it. And I cried, they cried. I'm very thankful for their honesty. And then I switched my major from composition to general music, and I had one elective, and that one elective, I took a counseling class, my world changed. When I graduated, two weeks later, I was in seminary, working on two master's degrees, I went from a C and D student to an A student. And three years later had two master's degrees from seminary. And now I have a PhD and postdoc work, and I'm not and I'm not a good student. If I can do it, anyone can do it. And what grabbed me was the heart and passion to help people. So the Destiny the goal is, what is your kid? Grab onto? And then how do you help nurture that and not everything they grab on to should be nurtured? Do you want to be a YouTuber? Yeah, good luck with that. Every teenager I know, says that almost. They want to be a YouTuber. It's like, I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy. Some of these young girls that have killed themselves because their drop in popularity or some really scary things have happened to young teenagers who try to go into that YouTube popularity world. So I would wish the high end on athletic orthotics on anybody. This is one of the most debase places, I wouldn't wish that on anyone. So for parents to really think through what do you really want in terms of measuring stick for the goals of who your kids become?

DJ Stutz  13:15  
Yeah, it's really hard because I look at these quote unquote, influencers, right? Yeah. They are not out there for showing how they have their mind. You're using it that they're smart that they're this, they're showing, generally a lot of meanness, anger, this is my body and skin.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  13:39  
Too much in.

DJ Stutz  13:41  
Yeah, way too much. Way too much. Yep. Because that's where they see their value. That's the value they have to offer.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  13:50  
Well, actually, I would, I would say it's an extreme value, but it's actually meant to be in the context of privacy not shown online. So I think the body is so beautiful and invaluable. We've misused and abused and devalued that's what the internet does. We take sexuality and we turn it into something that's used and taken. We have movements like the hashtag me to movement, which was so critical, in a sense of how dare we have some of the disgusting stuff that happens to some people happen. Why on the heels of that, we have cardi B's famous song called become Song of the Year called WAP. And if you don't know what that is careful looking it up mom and dad, because it is a very, very gross song that I hope you wouldn't want your daughters or your sons listening to, but it became song of the year that tells us where our culture's the mixed emotions and mixed priorities in terms of you in the body and then who I am my identity, because it needs to be weighed. More than just my body.

DJ Stutz  15:02  
I was reading a book, oh gosh, this was years ago. But they were talking about how we are dressing even our littlest kids and use the term prostatitis. Oh, yeah, I agree. Yeah. And how we're putting them in clothes that are definitely not meant for three, four or five year olds, let alone High School,

Dr. Corey Gilbert  15:24  
Victoria's Secrets cuz they're all new line of teenage girl stuff for interests across the rear end and very sexy lingerie for teenage girl and it's like, no boundary. bathing suits. If the bathing suit covers less than your underwear, we've got a problem. And it's not because of being prudish. It's like, no, that's reserved for a different place, in my belief system is reserved for only reserved for the context of a man woman marriage. Yeah, nowhere else. There's no other place where there's the beauty of that can be expressed and protected. Because the other part of that is when you throw it out there, it's not protected, it can be abused and used by anybody in the context of marriage and privacy, not on video. There's a beauty there. So our girls are being pimped out almost. Oh, yeah. And horrifying

DJ Stutz  16:19  
me to that. You're a guy. You know, guys, thank you. Can you see someone dressed like that? So those are two parts of this for me. One is,

why would you want to have your daughter go out there knowing that this is what guys are going to be thinking. They're not thinking, wow, she's intelligent, or she's so kind or she's they're not thinking any of those things. They're thinking very face thought, why would you want your child to go out there and be dressed in a way that encourages those types of thought towards your

Dr. Corey Gilbert  16:56  
child? Well, I would say there's different kinds of parents, I think there's parents that are intentionally doing it to try to make a statement. And they're setting their kids up to fail. But I've talked to a number of college students, where we've talked about dress and the exposure of cleavage, and the closer where, and they were, like appalled that anyone would think that. Because it wasn't even on their radar. They're like my mom just said, It looks cute on me. And so the innocence of some of these girls who have very beautiful bodies, they're not intending to do that some I think are the Proverbs six or seven temptress. They are out to do harm, if you will. But so many of these young girls were just trained. And I would even say some of the parents weren't even intending to do something wrong. But that's why this is important to talk about is what we would dress in matters, how we present ourselves matters. Our values matter, morality matters. All these things need to be thought through. So like one of the things that I do, we were at a concert one time. And my son's, this girl walks across, and she's wearing very little clothing. And I said out loud to my boys, hey, look at her. And they've noticed her I knew they had noticed her. But what I did is I moved it out of their unconscious to the conscious, where now they actually take ownership of having noticed her. And that's one of the differences is for so many we noticed but we have noticed unconsciously. And then we actually take which is really scary. And it's all done almost automatically. When it's conscious. Now I can take my thoughts captive with scripture talks about now I'm actually to steward those thoughts. Now I actually have to think about that girl, and honor her and respect her and be careful what I do with my head. And in my Avon fantasy, I am now responsible, big time for what I do. And so when I do that, I'm trying to help them notice I know you notice, but notice consciously, and now be a steward of that. practice that skill, you will be a man that's trustworthy.

DJ Stutz  19:07  
That's a great way to look at it. So how would you prepare your boys and girls to we notice how guys dress as well? And yes, yes. Yeah, I mean, it goes both ways. But so how would you prepare your kids when they're really young? We're talking about my age, group eight and number two, take responsibility and understand what am I going to do with this?

Dr. Corey Gilbert  19:37  
What I believe the most critical developmental stage is birth is the single digits. Yeah, so birth to about 10 or 11. And then at that point, they shift if we don't shift as parents, we actually are now fighting. Someone who knows it all. So it's not gonna go well, but prior to that they're softer moldable more moldable So I would say the beginning of these conversations starts when they're one and two, when it's just basically recognition of their body and body parts and using the right vocabulary calling a penis or penis being intentional about what you mean, why? Because then when they have the right vocabulary, if there's ever harm, they can actually use the right words to say what's going on or what's different, or what feels different, to express themselves. And when they don't have the vocabulary that's often when it gets lost. And shame shuts us down anyway. But you're preparing them. And you need to talk about the M word masturbation, you talk about pornography, the average boy especially and it's girls, it's on the rise like crazy is looking at porn by 878. Yeah. And so their brains, by the time they're in their teens have been so saturated with some of that stuff, that by the time they're in their 20s, they can't even function in a real relationship with another human or girl. And they're so broken. And yes, it's fixable. Yes, it's healable. God is incredible. But it's a very difficult surrendering and letting go of and a drug that I think hangs on forever. Once you open that door. You start drinking alcohol, that and it works, the temptation to drink later will be high, you start doing certain drugs, and marijuana is going to be a temptation later same for pornography. And so teaching them at an earlier age. And that's what I talked about in my book, both the books I wrote was really an emphasis on be too early, don't be too late. If you're too early, rather, yeah, they may may or may not even understand what you're saying. That's great talk about how bodies are made how sexes in a very generic way. And as their brains developing, and they're able to put it together, it'll come together, but under your roof, under your parameters, not some kid, you show them something online at school or a youth group, you know, or down the street, you want to be first basically what I keep telling parents. Three years ago, California made the law that they had to teach all 15 genders in kindergarten, where they even get this get this stuff blows my mind. Facebook has 70 to 90 genders. We're in trouble, our world gone crazy. But parents are freaking out about that. And I was like, well homeschool your kids, and they're in California, most can't, because it's too expensive to live there. Right? If you're sending your kid to kindergarten, you need to prepare them before they walk into kindergarten. And that's what six years old, right? Five, five or six years old, if you're not preparing them before, and here's what I hear from parents, oh, my kids aren't old enough yet. So they're not old enough for you to talk to them. But they are old enough for some teacher at a school to think about that. And I'm like, Whoa, careful. They need to walk into school, I need to know what a boy is and what a girl is. And that God made sex for between a man and a woman in marriage. In a covenant relationship in marriage, they need to understand that foundationally and then when they hear this crazy stuff from school, they can laugh and get in trouble and go to the principal's office and you can be proud. And then you start teaching them respect that that point, then you have to start teaching them how to respect others and that others are not going to agree. But you need to start with the foundation of a boys the boys and girls and girl and there is no switching genders there is none of this stuff. And what is truth? And then when they talk about 15 genders, the kids gonna be like, whatever there's to my son's not necessarily scientific. But I'm I'm wondering, kids tend to believe whatever they hear first.

I'm wondering if that's a true statement. So this is kind of just I'm more on the testing stage that so what they hear from school, and then they come home the parents go, No, that's not true. It's this, the kids go, you're old. But if they come to school, having heard from mom and dad, and they trust mom or dad at that point, and then they hear some from school, they're like, that's weird, because it doesn't fit. I want us to be first and talking about these hard conversations and dads. You need to be in the engaged in this. This is not just your wife's job. My wife won't talk about some of this stuff. I will that's what I do for a living. Some couples I talked to She's stronger at this and he's not so much but this is a partnership. We are not meant to be the same people. We are meant to use your assets, but also help each other in your earlier areas of liability as a person husbands and wives to be a team to love your kids towards the best future they can have. But in the end you also are shaping and guiding them towards Something I hope it's intentional not unintentional. Yes,

DJ Stutz  25:05  
absolutely. You have that set goal. And you've made a plan on how to get there or greater that you're going to actually figure it out. Like, if you set out on a trip, now we have GPS. But if you refuse to turn that GPS on or look at a map, well, I'm gonna go to New York, but then we start heading south to Mexico. You're not going to make it. So it's not that the information wasn't available, it's available. You're choosing not to take advantage of that information. That's just right

Dr. Corey Gilbert  25:45  
at your fingertips. Yeah. And our kids still have free will. Yeah, they can choose to reject you, they can choose to reject your faith, they can choose to reject your teaching. Yes, absolutely. They can. My opinion is that means the stakes just got higher, that as long as they're living with you still, and the younger they are, the better, then you take things away, and you actually make life a little more difficult for them, and help them attempt to get on the right path. But the truth is, is once they hit that 18, which isn't some magical age, by the way, it's a government decided age, because there are 30 year olds who are still teenagers 40 year old. Yeah, you're helping guide them. But at this magical 18 years, the truth is, is there more responsible than they've been in the past for their actions, but they're also responsible at 12. And they're also responsible at eight. But you actually have a little bit of a buffer, because of who you are, as a parent, we can help get them back on on track, and eight, will eat harder at 12. And much more difficult to 18.

DJ Stutz  26:51  
And when they're a five, and even four is a great time to ask them. What do you think will happen if you do? X, Y, or Z? Well, how do you think that would affect your sister? Or your or your teacher? If you do this? How's that going to deal with other people? And I know that from my own experience, we are having more and more not only kids, but parents as well, who are just looking at but I want this or I don't want this or looking at what's this decision going to affect? So true. identify that

Dr. Corey Gilbert  27:32  
it's a higher level of thinking that needs to actually be taught and those younger years of when I make a decision, it affects multiple people. How do you get to that you guide them it needs intentionality from parent, a teacher can't do it in a classroom, there's no way you can put that responsibility on a teacher. They have too many kids in the classroom. There's too many squirrely kids, and yours might be one of them. And so you can't put that on the teacher at home. You're engaging in constant playing out of a scenario if you did this if you were to run away, because you know that this was such a bad family and you were to go into the mountains and live sea. So what would you do for food and water? You play out the scenario? And you help them go? Yeah, I think it's probably a good idea to stay home. No, I think it might be too. And you know, all my sister would miss me. Okay. I think your sister would miss you. And even though you fight a lot, yeah, she would you play that out, you're helping them think through more than just about themselves.

DJ Stutz  28:34  
And that has to start really early.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  28:38  
It does. It does. But that same skill can be used for teenagers to it's just so much more difficult. So when I wrote my first book, I was at a homeschool conference. And I was at a table. And I would watch mom after mom walk past me and ignore me. Wow. Because they would look at this book. And they'd go, that's not for me. My kids aren't teenagers yet. Yeah. And I was like, No, this is for you, the mother of one year old, a two year old, a three year old. And so like I spoke at a conference three weeks ago at a homeschool conference was packed is awesome. And then we sold a whole bunch of books. Why? Because I got to speak to them and say moms, dads, you're my target is the younger, start younger not later, and all sudden they run to my table and get books. And I've you know podcast books, online resources, training for teenagers. But that was interesting. The watching the parents walk by because in their mind, I'll deal with the sex thing later because my book was about gender and sexuality from a biblical worldview. I've had a hard time with marketing because the people that I want to send it to or want to hear aren't listening because they're focused on survival and those first few years of right, if, well, everything they do is planting seeds for those first few years, that birth date is so critical what you do.

DJ Stutz  30:11  
Isn't that interesting, though, that parents? And we're all guilty of it at some point, but it's like, I'll deal with that later, because you are in that survival mode. You know, I'm just trying to get dinner on the table.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  30:30  
for the umpteenth time,

DJ Stutz  30:31  
yes. And meet all the needs of all my kids. And like my kids, when they were growing up, I had one that would meet be one that would meet ham or pork, and another one that didn't like chicken, you know? And so when your mind is whirling around, how am I going to feed everyone and get them to eat and stuff? Or jeez, I've got to get this one to gymnastics and that one to football and this one to tap dance or whatever it is? Yeah, you've you do feel overwhelmed. But the truth is, that if you take the time to investigate some of these resources, and you have better tools in your pocket, that you're able to meet those needs in a in a more productive way. It's kind of like, you've got a handsaw to go back and forth, right. And, you know, you need a table side, you can afford a table star saw, but you're like, No, I'm too busy sign this wood in half. And so in the time, you could run to Home Depot, get the sob bring it home, you you're done faster, actually, then you'd still be there with a handsaw. And so parenting is a lot like that is maybe finding the time on your way into work. Or if you're out on a run, or while you're sitting on the sideline waiting for them to finish practice. And you're using that time, it's there. Sometimes it's hard to see. But the time is available there for you to become more effective, more confident, blah, blah, blah. Yeah, in taking that time, but I understand completely, that feeling of, I just can't breathe.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  32:28  
Yeah. And that's where we need to be partnering with people to not be doing life alone. You know, you need to have barbecues with people, you need to have time to just kind of let your hair down time's up, be in a good Bible study you need to be. But that's the thing is you need to be and I think that's what ends up becoming a problem is you also then need to have your kid and all these different activities. It's like no, you don't every family has a different speed and how it kind of call it. Some of you that are listening to this. You need to keep your kids that are half of the things are in. Yeah, because you're hurting them and you ragged and it's probably is hurting them. And they would actually probably not agree with you and stopping some things, but you're the parent. And I think parents need to step up and set some boundaries. Others of you love going fast, fast, fast. Go go go next, next next thing. And so you, you're fine with that as a parent, your kid may not be right attention to where kids are at. And maybe you're pushing them too hard. I think most kids are not pushing hard enough in some areas, but the way that like even sports, it's like a six or seven day week commitment. Yeah. And I go by, and then they go from one sport to the next to the next. Next. It's like I don't think it's harmful sometimes. So how to really, as a family decide who are we? We did an exercise one time around the table kind of right prior to COVID. We got a whiteboard and we just kind of wrote down what defines us as a family. Good and bad. Yeah. My wife and I were like scared to what we're gonna get from our kids. And it was actually really positive. It was really encouraging. Then we did a list of so what do we want to do this coming year? What are we want to accomplish? Go you know, go experience and we put snowboarding and snowshoeing and I love snow. So snow snowmobile finally got to do that. And then we did a whole bunch of other things on the list. We've had that list so we've checked off things but it's centered around that versus I want this toy or I want this thing. It's amazing how that has changed. We started because of what we scouts which we've been doing for 11 years now. We quickly when they were younger, stopped buying toys and we were buying gear for camping. Expensive so instead of buying toys and that became that was their gifts and they loved it. Not every kid is going to go there. I know that but it's finding your kids economy and you nurturing and guiding them because my son, my oldest son would love to play football. And we said no. And at first he hated us for it. I mean, he resented us for because his two closest friends are playing. And we homeschool. He could go join a local one nearby. We said, No, we want to protect his brain, and he's all in person, and you probably break something the first day, he later actually decided, You know what, nevermind, thank you for that boundary. I'm going to maybe try to play in college. But I'm going to focus on the fact that I'm a brown belt and karate and go for my black belt. Yay. And then the summer he went out and got a farm job and start working on a farm. And it's like, he's showing the stuff that we want to see. And the young adult, he's only 15 or 16 now, but I can't make him do any of those things. But I can't set boundaries and say you're not doing these things. Right. So as a parent, you're having to having to evaluate all these things. It feels overwhelming. It's also we have to be careful who you listen to. If you go sit around with a bunch of other moms or dads, you often tend to feel guilty because you're not as busy as they are. And so careful who you listen to, when it comes to what they say you should be doing.

DJ Stutz  36:20  
Yeah, I agree. And two, we really worked hard as we were raising our kids. We weren't 100% successful, but I think we did better in we just saved the Sabbath for God. So if they wanted to be in sports, we had double check. Because we didn't play games on the Sabbath. We didn't do practices on the Sabbath. But that was our time to go to church to have family time, you know, at home in like, rejuvenation of your mind and body and your spirit. And to have that one day a week. Really,

Dr. Corey Gilbert  37:03  
you know, when the number one thing that they say that has that can change a family F E. Das, a family's culture is having meals together. Yeah. And so you can't do that. If there's a constant in and out in and out, go go. And as the kids get older, you just you lose one at a time and you lose that. So but then the other one is what do you do with faith? So church practices, relationship with the Bible, prayer, all those things are really critical of the practices you build into them, so that you have as a couple and build into them. And there isn't a cookie cutter. Now, I know some parents that have told me, don't you tell me that I shouldn't get rid of all my TVs and an Xbox and internet access? My husband did that years ago. And I felt so disconnected and it was the most unhealthy season of our life. Other families go, that's the best thing we ever did. Yeah. No, some say okay, the Sabbath or even Sunday. There's no electronics all day Sunday. And they set that boundary. That's not going to work for every family. Right? So careful not don't you're not listening to people. But oh, I should do that. No, you might need to try that. That it may not work for you. So that's okay. Be graceful towards yourself. As you try to find what's going to work for your family. You might have your husband might work out of town and he's gone from Monday to Friday, your family is going to be different. Or I've got multiple firefighter friends. And they do those three days on two days off career shifts. They don't have they have like one weekend every month or two together. Right? Because their schedule is so different. The couples I've seen work that out, they homeschool. So they basically make whatever time dad's off as the weekend and they're able to flex and make that work, right. But you're gonna have same if you're in ministry, Sunday is not a day of rest for someone who's in ministry, right? The the pastor works at a church. So you've got to be intentional somewhere else. So again, careful with listening to people and going to have to do that. Because you've been guilt tripped. My kid must learn six languages, 14 instruments and play 32 sports, it's like no. And ironically, none of those will actually get them ahead. in and of themselves. It's their heart and their character, and their work ethic. That's gonna get them ahead. Well, and so what I look

DJ Stutz  39:33  
at, is we bring faith, praying about it, looking for inspiration from God and saying which direction is the best direction for my family?

Dr. Corey Gilbert  39:45  
Correct. And that example from mom and dad, but then including the kids. We've had those seasons with our kids where we we've prayed through moving and changing jobs and we didn't do it privately as a couple because our kids were old. Learn, we did it with them and it stressed them out. I think it was good for them why they also had to trust God and go through motions that they didn't know how to handle it first and some couples are struggling with finances, you can handle it privately and leave your kids oblivious. Maybe when they're younger, okay. But when they're older, include them and help them be a part of that. Be careful, because you might have some kids are overly sensitive, and you might need to have a boundary there. That's understandable. But you're a team. And it's not just husband, wife, that's the executive team. Right? The whole family, the more you include them, they need to know how much rent or mortgage cost, how much electricity costs, and they turn the lights off, and how much all these, your cell phone and internet and gas prices get gracious. Like they need to know that. They the earlier they learn it, the more they are aware and can be stewards of which is a critical term to stewardship.

DJ Stutz  41:04  
I agree. So tell me, what are the names of your books that you have out?

Dr. Corey Gilbert  41:09  
This is the first one. I can't say that. Going beyond the talk, equipping your children to make choices about sexuality and gender from a biblical sexual ethic. And it's got a workbook that goes along with it. It's blue sitting over there. So it's book book and workbook. And it basically walks through parents. The goal of this book is Mom and Dad, do you know what you believe? So it's for mom and dad to read through. It's got Scripture all throughout it. And then the workbook walks through questions to help you think through what you believe about gender, sexuality, hard topics, get to toe contents, when we started talking about things like theology of sex, theology, marriage, anatomy, age appropriate conversations, and hot topics like homosexuality, since extraction, pornography bullying, the N word singleness then addresses trauma. And so that's the goal parent one. And then I wrote this one, which is similar content was called going beyond the talk, teen and preteens guide. This is to handle your kid, similar content that was written to them to help them think through what do I believe as a teen and preteen and the workbook is after each chapter, this is empowering you to make choices about sexuality and gender from a biblical sexual ethic. That picture is my son right there.

DJ Stutz  42:34  
Oh, fun to read. Yeah.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  42:38  
And this is, I have some families that they're doing it as a family, they're going through this book as a family. And so they, you know, once or twice a week get together, and they read apart and they talk to the questions at the end, and discuss some others, the parent that's afraid to talk about it, they just hand this book to their kid and go, okay. And basically, they're what I say this in the book, they're basically are letting me in to be the teacher. And again, what I say is, be careful who you let teach your kids. So you parents read this one and make sure that I am in agreement, you're in agreement with me. And then my best review of this book was an 18 year old who said, Thank you for leading me and guiding me down a path to help me think through what I believe not telling me what to believe. I was like, Yes, that's the goal that was so hard to do. Yet she was saying, but I succeeded at that. equip you to know what you believe. And then I have an actual online course of this book. For teens and preteens to go through a class I've taught for 17 years on human sexuality, to think through what is a theology of singleness a theology of masturbation, a theology of pornography, a biology of sex and marriage, contraception? How do I be wise? How do I date? Well, how do I make relationship choices? Well, because we have a culture right now, where there are so many men, especially who've had sex with a lot of people, but never been on a date. Yeah, they don't know how to even ask a girl out on a date. Yeah, so I have a whole section in here and also have links on my YouTube channel. I have little lessons that I've done at different churches and conferences. They're all on my YouTube channel that are pieces of this. Of so how do I date marry well, what about these hot topics? What is the age appropriate conversations? So my whole adult life has been spent focusing on Gender Sexuality from a biblical worldview. I've trained to have postdoc training and sex therapy and my doctoral work was in family psychology my heart and goal is a is equipping families to be Biblically sound, but then to grow to multiply to influence others of like, so I, again focus on the sexuality and gender part. There are other areas that are important, like finances and being financial steward and other ethical issues like lying, because that's on the on the rise, how many will lie their way to the top. So I deal with the gender and sexuality stuff, which is tough because we have a world very much pushing an ethic that's destroying kids lives, destroying bodies, having people cut body parts off hormones that should never be put in children. Right? So this is a hot topic and a hard topic. But it's so critical that we teach what Scripture says that shows and even research backs it up. It is the best path for each of us.

DJ Stutz  45:47  
And it takes a lot of courage, I think to really address that. So we're going to have all of that information on your books on your website, which is Dr. Corey Yes, we'll have all of that information in our show notes. But I really hope that people will take the time to listen to you through the podcast, be sure and leave a rating and review and follow and move forward. Hey, before we go, yes, I would just like to ask you and looking at all of this. How do you define a successful parent?

Dr. Corey Gilbert  46:28  
Oh, that's a great one. There that you got them out of the house? Just kidding.

DJ Stutz  46:36  
Far from wrong? I don't think

Dr. Corey Gilbert  46:38  
so. I think we define it. Did we get a married off? Did they go to college? Do they get a good job? Are they a productive member of society? I think that's the way most of us tend to think that success. I would say no, no, no, no, those are secondary to are they a champion for Christ? Yeah. And so Barna did a credible research study years ago, ironically, at the same time, his daughter was in a treatment center. And he felt like a miserable failure as a dad. But his team said, No, you have to publish this. And he talked about the study, he did have single adults who are still following Christ, and what are their parents do, right. And the biggest thing they they came out was exactly about it was that the goal was not to get them into college or to or even the best college, or college at all, or to get married off, or all those things it was is their heart bent towards something bigger than themselves. There's something to fight for. I don't care if you're a teacher, if you're a firefighter, if you're a plumber, or if you're a missionary, we should all be on the same mission of not just punching a clock, and doing a job and going home and watching TV and then doing it again the next day. We're so self centered. It shouldn't be about in the job I do. I'm serving other people. Yeah. That's to me the definition.

DJ Stutz  48:05  
Yeah. Well, and it all goes back to the two great commandments, right? Love God and love your neighbor. And no matter what you're doing many of those jobs, if you're doing it to be of service, and to show love to those people that you're working with, and for then you're on a good path. Correct? Yeah. Well, Dr. Corey Gilbert, I am so appreciative of this time that you've taken to be on the podcast. And I would love to connect again and talk about some other things down the road.

Dr. Corey Gilbert  48:41  
Love that very much. We'd

DJ Stutz  48:42  
be honored. That'd be great. Well, thank you, and we'll talk to you soon. 

Dr. Corey Gilbert  48:47  
Thanks for having me. 

DJ Stutz  48:51  
You know, one of the things I really love talking about with Corey, was that he talked about how we measure the success of our children. It isn't the sports, it's not the grades. It's the core of who they are using the correct terms of things. And then thinking about how to have those quote unquote difficult conversations early and helping kids to think beyond themselves. How does my decision affect others? So much good information. So if you're interested in finding Dr. Gilbert and all that he has to offer, that contact information is there in the shownotes? Well, registration is now closed for the Cicerone Society. That's my group coaching program, and we're going to open it again in November. But in the meantime, you're always welcome to participate in some one on one counseling. With this program, you're going to get access to two hours of personal one on one zoom conversations every month and then unlimited access through emails to parent coaching that will address Is the concerns and growth specific to you and your family. So that link is in the show notes a lot in the show notes, guys. So while you're down there and join all the great resources and information that are there, I am going to keep asking you to go ahead and leave a rating, review and follow the podcast, taking time to give the podcast that five star rating and review really makes the podcast easier to find. And then we are able to help more families. And another trick that I want to give you and it's for any podcast you listen to, not just mine is that the analytics, only pay attention to the downloads. I know when I'm listening to podcasts, I stream them. Well, I don't anymore now, because I know the secret. So if you go ahead and download the episodes that you're interested in, once you've listened to them, just go ahead and delete them from your phone or your computer, whatever you have. So they're not taking up memory space that you really need. But then that podcast put in my podcasts are getting credit with the analytics for having that download. And it's going to help those podcasts grow. Remember to join me every Tuesday night for my Facebook Live event. And that's on the Imperfect Heroes podcast page on Facebook. We know now the new podcast episodes come out on Mondays. And so that's gonna give you two days basically, to listen in. And then you can join us on the live and ask questions, share stories, and share your thoughts about the episode. It is lots of fun. And you can find me at the Imperfect Heroes podcast page on Facebook at 7pm Mountain Time. And then in September, I'm going to give something new a try. I'm going to be doing a live on Instagram at six o'clock on and perfect heroes podcast, you can find me there. And we're going to share a lot of what we talked about on the podcast and maybe some new stories. And I'm just going to kind of wait and see how it goes. And if that's where I want to stay. If I want to do both. Whatever decision that I make, I want to get some data and see how it goes. So for that month, you're going to have two opportunities to learn more and participate free of charge the Facebook on Tuesday, and Instagram on Wednesdays and you're not going to believe it. Anyone who knows me well is shocked to death. I have ventured into the world of Tiktok and so I'm under Little Hearts Academy USA and you can find me there so follow me see what happens. Next week, I am having sleep specialist Rebecca Linney. If you're struggling with getting your child to bed and getting them the sleep they require to grow and develop properly. She really does have all the answers. She's amazing. So until next time, let's find joy in parenting.

Transcribed by

Dr. Corey GilbertProfile Photo

Dr. Corey Gilbert

CEO and Founder of the HealingLives Center/Author/Speaker/Podcaster

Dr. Corey Gilbert is the CEO and Founder of the HealingLives Center, an acclaimed author, and sought-after speaker. Every day he works passionately to support and coach individuals of all walks of life as they overcome their pain, understand who they are, and even see value in their suffering.

Over the last 22 years, Corey has devoted his life to counseling individuals, couples, and families struggling with past abuse especially in the areas of trauma, adultery, struggles with sex, sexuality, and gender identity.

As a Licensed Professional Counselor with a PhD in Family Psychology, Corey knew his passion and purpose in life was to help individuals overcome their pain, but he also saw that the traditional therapeutic structure of endless 1-hour weekly sessions wasn't getting his clients closer to the freedom and joy of living that they wanted to experience. To achieve this, he knew there had to be a better way. The hunger to serve hurting individuals, marriages, and families in a better way made him a radical student of coaching, transformation, communication, and growth. When he committed to serving as a coach in the areas of transformation, he saw everything change.