Today we’re talking about that stage in life all parents dread the most! It’s the time our adorable, cute kids gradually turn into hormonal monsters and turn our homes into the devil’s new personal residence. Here are a few pointers on parenting teenagers without losing your mind.
It’s only teenagers that have the ability to make you question yourself on whether or not you were wired to have kids. These cute monsters will get you reaching for the last fiber of your being that still defines sanity. One minute you feel as though their presence in your life turns your world into paradise and the next minute you immediately feel strapped in a straitjacket.
In addition, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to parenting teenagers since each family has its own unique dynamics. Some families struggle mightily while others sail along fairly smoothly during the teen years (although they may encounter more challenging situations once their children become adults). Nevertheless, the following tips for parenting teenagers without losing your mind:
Here are 8 Tips in Parenting Teenagers
1) Establish Firm Boundaries and Be Consistent With Them
This is perhaps the most crucial parenting skill during the teen years. Teens need to know what is expected of them and what the consequences are for not meeting those expectations. However, it’s important to keep in mind that boundaries should be reasonable and relevant to the age of your teenager – you can’t expect a 13-year-old to adhere to the same rules as a 16-year-old.
2) Let Your Teen Make Some Decisions on His Own
The teenage years are all about independence and learning how to navigate life on one’s own. While you don’t want to abdicate all parenting responsibilities, letting your teen make some decisions on his or her own will benefit everyone in the long run.
3) Don’t Be a ‘Friend’ to Your Teen
Remember those parenting teens is all about communicating expectations and setting boundaries, not about being their friend. It’s easy to let parenting slip into a peer relationship when you’re simply trying to be someone’s buddy rather than establishing rules and enforcing them consistently. This can lead to difficult conflicts down the line when they feel entitled by your permissiveness (“I’m allowed to stay out until 10:00!”).
4) Get Parenting Support From Other People Who Have Parenting Teenagers
Whether it’s friends, family members, or neighbors – tap into this community of parents who have parenting teenagers and can offer parenting advice based on personal experiences. In addition, you have the added benefit of hearing parenting tales from parents who have parenting teenagers from another perspective (i.e., perspectives from parenting a child in middle school or parenting a high school student). Additionally, don’t be afraid to ask for parenting help when needed. While parenting teenagers requires quite a bit of energy and patience, it is worth it in the end when your children become responsible adults.”
5) Give Them Some Quality Attention
First and foremost, teenagers will seek attention from their parents in the weirdest of ways. They will shout at you to leave them alone, bang the bedroom door on your face and even pierce body areas you have never imagined. Just remember, that although they won’t admit it, it is your attention that they are seeking. I mean, why else would anyone tattoo their face? Yeah, I know what you’re going to say, and I’ll tell you for sure that it’s not art! Give them attention and try to tune into what they’re doing and what they need. Listening is a good place to start.
6) Give Them Some Room to Grow
By now you’ve noticed a pattern during the weekend. Teenagers always look for reasons to sleep out. Last week it was a sleepover at Sarah’s house or John’s, the week before that it was a camping trip, and today it’s a science project. They are screaming for independence! Teenagers want to leave the nest. They want to test the waters of what life has to offer without the metaphorical training wheels. As a parent, it’s okay being worried, but that’s part of the job description. Allow them to fly solo when it feels safe and give them some room to grow.
7) Have “the talk” With Them
Have you had ‘the talk’ with them yet? Teenagers are full of curiosity, and as much as we want to think they are too young to indulge in sex, we know we’re lying to ourselves. While it might be uncomfortable to have that kind of conversation, remember, it’s you they would rather have that conversation within-person than find out some other less personal, random way. These conversations can be peculiar, but illuminating!
Learn more about how to talk with teenagers in this article.
8) In Parenting Teenagers, Discipline is Necessary
Teenagers like to skip class. You might drop them off and go to work only to receive a call from the school principal inquiring why your child didn’t show up. You try getting a hold of them only to realize their phones are switched off. They later show up at home unannounced and way past curfew. Consider repercussions like grounding them and/or recommending detention at school. As soon as they are well aware of how serious the consequences are, they might not try to pull such a stunt, again.
No one relishes parenting teenagers. I’ve been through the grind, and I consider myself a survivor.
To my fellow parenting teenagers survivors, cheers!
Parenting teenagers can be challenging, but there are many ways to help you get through the tough times. Establish firm boundaries and stick with them consistently; let your teen make some decisions on his own; don’t be friends with your teen; find parenting support from other people who have teenagers as well as professionals like therapists or counselors (this is especially helpful if you’re coping with mental illness); give time for quality attention and appreciating what they do right; allow teens room to grow by giving them freedoms, responsibilities, and choices that will eventually lead up to their independence.
All of these things combined should hopefully provide enough balance in order for both parent and child to thrive during this developmental period!
Check out our article Teenage Drinking Is Worse In Bored Teenagers.
Jessica has a flair for writing engaging blogs and articles. She enjoys reading and learning new things which enables her to write different topics and fields with ease. She also strives to break down complex concepts and make them easy for anybody to comprehend.