Meet Dr. Paul Helton, Assistant Professor of Psychology at Freed-Hardeman University.
Just a few years before beginning his career at FHU, Dr. Helton and his family moved into an area just a few miles from North Jackson and planted what is now known as Crosswinds Church of Christ. Meeting in what was once a used tanning salon, the church quickly outgrew the facility and is now located in a permanent building.
“The church continues to experience growth as members try to evangelize the un-churched and hurting people and has become one of the greatest blessings of my life.”
With his wife and three daughters, Dr. Helton enjoys being the only man in the home. In fact, he has been heard to say that he doesn’t even like boys. When his girls began dating and bringing boys home to meet him, he always enjoyed cleaning his guns and psychoanalyzing them with his counseling techniques.
“Hair, makeup, cell phones, clothes, and social activities were all interesting facets of raising daughters. Having a godly wife to make the journey worthwhile has made all the difference in the world.”
Dr. Helton and his wife have added another girl to the family with the birth of granddaughter Shiloh Faith Reasons. He says the most thrilling aspect of his life is being a "Poppy" to their first grand baby, while his wife is affectionately called, “Dee Dee.”
“My oldest daughter, Sarah, is one of the best mothers I've ever seen. I am also so blessed to have a wonderful son-in-law, Drew Reasons. I could not ask for a better husband who loves the Lord and his family.”
When he’s not enjoying the company of his large family, he can be found raising 7-12 different varieties of Asian jungle fowl. He also raises Angus cattle, goats, and horses. When asked about his love for animals, Dr. Helton says, “The farm and animals provide some of the greatest therapy a person could ask for.”
Oddly enough, Dr. Helton was given the opportunity to put this theory to work when he and his family appeared on CMT’s “World’s Strictest Parents,” a national television series. The Heltons were selected to work with troubled teens that temporarily had to stay in their home. The Heltons used life on the farm, along with some seasoned parenting strategies, to help a young boy and girl from Florida learn the value of discipline. Both teens brought numerous behavioral problems into the Helton’s home, and the events that followed made for some very interesting viewing. The show’s popularity grew and the program moved to MTV, where a worldwide audience was able to view Dr. Helton’s experience.
Now that all of the children, troubled or not, are out of the house, Dr. Helton and his wife enjoy their weekly "date nights.” Being "empty nesters" allows for more quality time together, and they have a goal of one date night per week. On rare occasion, they have been known to get crazy and have three date nights in one weekend!
After graduating from Freed-Hardeman University in 1985, Dr. Helton had intentions to return to his lovely Alma Mater. Five years ago , he returned and began teaching as an Assistant Professor of Psychology. He has quickly become a student favorite, and he is truly one of FHU’s Finest.