I had a conversation in the car about relationships with our 9-year-old. Bonus! I usually get to have these conversations with our 6-year-old daughter.
K: Why would anyone want to marry Miley Cyrus? She's not cute.
M: Well, she has lots of money and she's famous. That might be what some people look for in a wife...........What do you want in the person you marry? I know you want someone you think is cute, but what else?
K: Well, smart.
M: That's a good trait, intelligent. What else?
K: Someone who is kind.
M: That's a really good trait too. Do you think daddy is smart and nice?
K: Yeah. Well, nice sometimes.
M: (Smile). Those were two things I wanted when I married someone too, kind and smart. I also wanted someone who was a worthy priesthood holder. Daddy has a good testimony and I wanted that in a husband.
K: Yeah. That's good too.
M: I wanted someone who could take me to the temple.
K: Oh course!
Now, we've been working on kindness toward women and especially his sister. Having this in mind, I continued the conversation. He was a captive audience because he had asked the question first and we were stuck in the car on the way home from karate.
M: Do you think mommy is smart?
M: Do you think mommy is nice?
K: Well, sometimes.
M: (Smile) I know. I have to give you consequences sometimes. That's not very fun. What about A (sister); is she smart? Is she smart for a 6-year-old (he likes to base everyone on his age group)?
K: I don't know. I don't know what 6-year-olds know.
M: She is pretty smart for her age. Is she nice?
M: If A is smart and nice, do you think you should be treating her like you would treat your future wife?
K: But I can't marry her.
M: You aren't going to marry her, but you should treat her like you would your wife. Someday someone else is going to marry her and you'll want him to treat her with kindness and respect. You can help her learn what it feels like to be treated right by being a kind brother. Also, it's good practice for you. You can practice treating other women with respect and then you will already be that way for your future wife.
He had no idea this was coming! But, this is the first time I feel like some of what we've been trying to teach him actually was processed in his brain. I love my alone time in the car with him. We have some really good conversations.