It is said that parenthood can be an extremely rewarding but also extremely stressful event in people’s lives. You have to wake up in the middle of the night to crying when they are babies, run behind them all day when they’re toddlers and then there’s also dealing with the school years. That doesn’t seem so bad compared to what comes after that, a parents worst nightmare. The teenager years.
This is a time in your kids lives where they start to grow up physically, mentally and emotionally. That’s a lot of growing happening at once which is why it might be hard for them to deal with and for parents to deal with them.
Some teenagers go through a rebellious phase, where they become distant from their parents, and might choose to participate in activities that don’t have parental approval. Skipping school, staying out late or maybe even start doing drugs and alcohol. It’s up to you as a parent to help them build good values before they head into their teen years. Help them to understand what the consequences of doing these things are.
If a teen does start pulling away from their parents, don’t worry, it’s natural. It doesn’t mean that they are being rebellious, it just means they are growing up. There comes a time where they will prefer to be around their friends or be alone instead of their parents.
The most important thing to avoid is being a controlling parent. The one thing teens hate most is being told what to do and if they are then they feel the need to do the opposite of what you told them. Try to be supportive of their decisions when it comes to the small stuff, like changing their appearance or when they wish to start dating. There’s no harm in that. All you can really do is give them your opinion and not orders.
Then there’s social media. These days most teenagers rely heavily on social media. They are social beings who like interacting with others their own age. Prying into their social media is a big mistake. Yes, there’s being involved in your teens lives but you can do that while still respecting their privacy. If they somehow find out you did pry, the result won’t be pretty. The only time prying is alright is if you think something is severely wrong.
Remember, teenagers appreciate when their parents trust them. If they know that, then they are more inclined to respect that trust. If they violate that then it’s alright for some sort of punishment to be given out. However you have to give them opportunities to earn back that trust.
All parents were teenagers once, so try and put yourself in their shoes when dealing with yours. No one wants to be a ‘do as I say not as I do’ parent.