Tips On Raising A Teenager And How To Listen To Your Teen
Being a parent of a teen isn’t always easy as we all know. You worry every moment about their well being and that they are safe. You want to know how they are doing in school, how they are feeling emotionally, and you would hope that they come to you when they have problems. Being a part of your child’s life, especially during their teenage years, is one of the most important things you can do as a parent. Below are some tips that I have come to learn and believe that every parent should know.
Yes I know that’s obviously not a picture of a teen. They grow up so fast my daughter is now 13 but here’s a picture of her only a few weeks old. Enjoy your time with them! I’m still trying to figure out how 13 years has passed already!
Listen to your kids. While it may be a hard situation for your teen to come and talk to you, when they do, you should listen and give them your fullest attention. Even older teens have troubles sometimes when it comes to voicing their concerns, and often, they will subtly say something that they hope gets your attention, and if you aren’t listening to them, you may just miss their concerns. Always be attentive, and ask them questions. Even if they are a little reluctant to answer, keeping an open mind and listening is always helpful.
You should know where your children are, but don’t harp on them for every step of their teenage years. Knowing if they are at school, the mall or even at a friend’s house will keep you informed of their whereabouts, if they’ve earned it there needs to be some trust. Checking in doesn’t hurt, but don’t do it so often that your child begins to feel that you don’t trust them. However if they break that trust then have an honest talk to them about it and of course the consequences. I have found that knowing the parents of the friends my teen has, gives me a chance to know where they are without intruding on my teen. Knowing the parents of your teen’s friends I have found to be invaluable and hey I’ve even made some great friends myself that way.
Always talk to your kids about bullying. Many teens will not let you know if they are the victim of bullying, which can lead to a lot of health and social problems for your child. Knowing how they feel, and if they are being bullied, can help you both determine a course of action that will help your child and the situation.
Having teenagers is never easy, but if you approach your teen with openness and a willingness to learn who they are growing up to be and who they see themselves as, you will find that you will have a better relationship, in my own experience. Of course as with any parent you should know your teen best and do what you feel works for you both.