Parenting Adolescents 2 Responses

1.  It is scary parenting adolescents.  My son is sixteen, and I am currently in this phase. You want to raise a well-rounded, self-sufficient child. Parents know we can not protect them from everything. We also know we have to loosen the string more and more as they get older.  Imagine a kite; when you first learn how to fly a kite, it is close to you, and the better you get at it, the sting is not tight, and you let it fly higher.

Effectively balancing protection, limits, and freedom starts with a baseline of rules and trust.  Communication is also vital; talk to your child and not at them. If your child trusts you, they will come to you when there are problems.  Here are ten helpful tips that I read in an article on WebMD site

1. Give kids some leeway. Giving teens a chance to establish their own identity, giving them more independence

2. Choose your battles wisely. I no longer complain constantly about my son’s room being cleaned.

3. Invite their friends for dinner and events

4. Decide rules and discipline in advance; we discuss acceptable grades and consequences for the school year before school starts.  When we go on vacations, we negotiate rules before we go

5. Discuss ‘checking in.

6. Talk to teens about risks. We discuss drugs, alcohol, drinking out of open containers, sex, and being alone with the opposite gender every time he goes to an event. Occasionally, I have him tell me the rules.

7. Give teens a game plan. Help them figure out how to handle a potentially unsafe situation. Last week, I asked my son what he would do if the parents left the event.

8. Keep the door open. Please share a few things about your day; ask about theirs. How was the party? Did you have fun? How was your day? Another good line: “You may not feel like discussing what happened right now. I know what that is like. However, if you feel like discussing it later, you come to me.

9. Let kids feel guilty.  People should feel bad if they have hurt someone or done something wrong. Kids need to feel bad sometimes. Guilt is a healthy emotion. When kids have done something wrong, we hope they feel bad (Davis, 2003).

10. Be a role model. Your actions — even more than your words — are critical in helping teens adopt good moral and ethical standards (Davis, 2003).

Question: How would a child’s coping skills and adaptability be if their parents kept them sheltered?

2.  It is a delicate task for parents to balance the forces of separation and connection by imposing limits on their teens and giving them freedom to explore. When the parents communicate well, there is no confusion or disagreement between them, and the balance can be achieved effectively.

First and foremost, open communication is crucial to building a trusting relationship with the teenager. You can build trust and better understand your teenager’s perspective by encouraging them to discuss their thoughts, concerns, and experiences.Setting boundaries is another strategy to ensure teenagers safety and well-being. Setting rules and limits will help them understand they need to be responsible with their actions and prepare for life by understanding there is time for everything (Martin, 2017). In my opinion, teenagers should have the opportunity to explore their interests and passions on their own, for instance, by participating in sports, applying for part-time jobs, or learning new skills, since that will help them to define who they are and what they want to accomplish. Allowing teenagers to become independent helps them become responsible and disciplined young adults who establish goals and maintain stability as they grow up (Martin, 2017). Parents should assign them responsibilities as they grow according to their age. For example, maybe start with assigning some house hold chores, assign them some outdoor work like mowing the lawn, or have them be responsible for their own meals, etc. 

Privacy is also a big thing for teenagers. I remember getting my first diary and I was so happy because I knew I could write whatever I wanted to in there, knowing no one was going to look because it was locked. Whenever I felt happy, sad, nervous, etc. I always went to my diary first to express my feelings. It is essential for parents to respect their childs privacy within reason. Teenagers should feel comfortable sharing concerns with parents so that they can guide them and provide positive advice in the right direction. When something seems odd, you as a parent have the authority to check on it because you want to reassure your teenagers that they are behaving responsibly. We want to respect our teens privacy, while also being involved in their life, but also not to be overbearing.

Other strategies parents should consider include are to establish clear boundries, lead by example, acknowledge mistakes and help redirect, and to be flexible with your children (Martin, 2017). In order to achieve harmony between providing protection and fostering independence, parents must strike a delicate balance between separation and connection with teenagers. In allowing their teens to experience natural consequences, parents allow them to learn valuable life lessons and develop problem-solving skills. As teenagers grow and develop into confident, capable individuals, parents can help them prepare for life’s challenges.