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Parent-Teen Communication 101 By Jade Robinson

Copyright Š 2012 by JadeRobinson.us


Are you finding it impossible to talk to your teen? Or is your teen just flat out ignoring you? Our Parent-Teen Communication Guide 101 has been specially designed to help open the lines of communication with your teen. This can be a really dangerous situation to get into, as your teen pushes the boundaries and gets closer to becoming an independent adult it’s important that the lines of communication are clear. This will ensure that your teen can come to you if they need you and also so that you can continue to positively influence them and their choices. Just because your teenager is starting to look older doesn’t mean they actually are – they still need you, maybe more than they ever have. Be Fair and Respectful One of the best ways to foster communication with your teen is to be fair and respectful. By now you’re probably aware that your teen has an opinion and probably a strong one at that. If you ask for your teen’s opinions on things, particularly things that affect them directly, you will gain a lot of respect from your teen – they will appreciate that you are taking their thoughts and opinions on board. Your teen is too old to be simply told what to do, but too young to be given the freedom and lack of guidance that an adult would expect. You need to meet your teen somewhere in the middle, which will be dependent on their age, maturity and how much you feel that you can trust them. The simple fact with teenagers is if you don’t give them any freedom, they will steal it. It’s much better for everyone involved if you give them some freedom and maintain control rather than just losing it completely. A lot of your communication with your teen will come down to negotiation, including negotiating boundaries, curfews, how often they can go out, pocket money, help around the home etc. Respect your teen’s desire for independence, but ensure they still spend time at home with your family. Do not Engage in Arguments Arguments provide little benefit for parents, but allow your teen an opportunity to manipulate or reshape your decision. As such, we suggest that you do not engage in arguments and only negotiate or discuss things with your teen when you are both calm, and level headed. It’s important that discussions are not overly emotion and instead focus on being outcome orientated. You want to find solutions that both you and your teen are happy with. Ask for Their Opinion When compared to our children we have simply had a great number more years to develop our communication skills and confidence in articulating our thoughts and opinions. Our teenagers are just Copyright © 2012 by JadeRobinson.us


learning how to be more outspoken and they are dealing with new emotions and feelings. This can result in them expressing good thoughts and ideas in horrible ways. It’s important that as a parent we take the time to ask our children how they feel about certain things; especially rules and regulations that we have implemented that affect them. But more than that, you should be asking about their days and what is going on in their lives. Don’t be nosey; it’s very important that you respect their right to privacy, particularly if you don’t have any concerns about their health or safety. It’s important that you child knows that you care about things going on in their lives even if they don’t feel particularly open to discussing it. Just asking lets them know you care about them and about their thoughts – both are really important to fostering communication. Communicating with your teen doesn’t have to be a nightmare, sure it gets a little more difficult especially when their hormones are charging and their moods change faster than the weather. It’s important that you don’t press too hard for anything and work on slowly developing the lines of communication. What have you found to be effective for helping communication with your teen? Is there anything you think that is missing from this parent-teen communication 101 guide? For more details, please visit: http://www.homecontract.org/parenting-contract/

Copyright © 2012 by JadeRobinson.us


Parenting Teen Communication 101