Teenage And Parenting

Teenage And Parenting

Parenting’ appears to be a cakewalk until you yourself become a parent. On actual grounds, it is one of the toughest jobs one can ever think of. It is extremely difficult to be patient with your own little version. There are various stages of your next generation starting from being an  infant, toddler, preschool, then teenager and lastly an adult. Above all stages, handling of a teenager (12-18 years) is the most difficult challenge for parents because they are unique and often self contradictory breeds. They think they know everything as they are undergoing a transitional phase where their intelligence is being hijacked by their hormones. So many thoughts are going inside their head such as studies, exams, ambitions, friends, their looks, queries about the opposite sex, social media etc. This is the stage when they are simultaneously growing physically and mentally. An important thing that we as a parent don't realise that along with physical growth, their potential is also increasing. So it becomes our responsibility to use their energy and potential in a positive way, but we often become overprotective because obviously our kids (now teenagers) have not experienced the realities and hardships of life. We start yelling and shouting at them. We often disapprove their choices, call them immature.

This clash of views results in -

Most of the time they tend to disagree with their parents’ choices, therefore arguments, back-answering, anxiety issues and antisocial behaviour occurs. This is the time when children start asking the reason behind the insecurities and actions behind their parents. In order to understand their psychology we need to catch their mental level. Children will listen to you only when they feel listened to.

But we as a parent
    Often interrupt in between the conversation to defend ourselves.
    Give lectures and command when child tries to talk.
    Instead of working as a guide we often force them to follow us.

Strategies to tackle the situation.
Accept : We have to accept that they have their own opinion. It's not necessary that they have to follow the hard and fast rule. Even if they say something wrong out of frustration, we should not take it personally. They are just slightly grown up kids going through one of the major life transitions.

Appreciate : To be noticed and rewarded is a natural human tendency. If a child secures a good position in studies or extra curricular activities, appreciate him/her by saying ‘it is the result of your hard work’ instead of saying ‘you are intelligent’. So praise the efforts not the child. This will change their attitude towards you.

Adventure : They are full of spirit and enthusiasm, now add some adventure and use their energy in some positive and productive way. Provide them some task which they actually enjoy. Let them feel valued. Ask them to make tea/coffee, share your life experiences with them, involve them in healthy debates, ask them to do some craft or DIY project, bake a cake, ask to do some science project along with its explanation. Allow them to think out of the box. Let them learn, fail and experience.

Advice from others : If they don't adhere to your decisions, find a friend, a coach or a relative who can convince and influence them. They will feel free to discuss their problems with that trustworthy person rather than being preached, criticised and punished by their parents.

Ask: Continuous imposition of suggestions and too much advice to teenagers affects their ego. Instead of playing blame game we should ask about their opinion. Example, If your son is spending most of his time on cellphone, you can address the problem in two ways:
a)     Either you can scold/shout and ask him to go back to study immediately.
b)    Or give him two options and ask after how much time will he be back to studies- 30 minutes or 60 minutes. Now this will restrict them to a maximum of 60 minutes. This will prune the chances of an argument as the option would be selected by themselves only.

If your kids have a problem, they will come to you only if they see a friend in you, but if you behave like a boss/owner, they will never unfold in front of you. To be your child’s friend is a feeling which is earned. It will not come immediately, it will only come by putting everyday efforts. So as a parent, we should be able to be more flexible and ready to compromise more often. We should try to focus on the solution that is best for both parent and child. 

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  1. Thank you Founder Member. I found it very relevant for myself. This article will help all parents in improving relations with their children. Which will bring love harmony in their home. We appreciate your effort. Thank you once again.

  2. Very relevant and helpful for parents in quarantine...


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