Parenting a Teenager
Just when you thought you were going to get a handbook with how to parent your teenager, I’m going to break it to you: there is no handbook, guideline, cliff notes, or anything that will be a step-by-step guide. I know this is a letdown, but there is hope. It’s important to understand that what tip or trick you read regarding parenting or any other skill you need to take that with a grain of salt. No teenager, person, or family is textbook or the typical all the time. You must take each general skill and personalize it to you and make it your own.
Parenting a Teenager – The Do’s and Don’ts
Finally consider the 3 “F’s” of parenting. Be Firm, be Fair, and be Friendly. Consequences need to be clearly stated and adhered to. The punishment should fit the crime and creating bigger and badder consequences do not make your teenager magically follow the rules. In the cases of reoccurring behaviors, consequences should be stated in advance so that all are on the same page and that children know what is expected. Also consider every situation as a new situation. Don’t hold onto your feelings of anger or disappointment for earlier behaviors. You’re setting your teenager up to fail if you hold one behavior again them all day. And use friendly but firm ways to communicate. Reiterate boundaries that are in place and encourage your teenager to remember what they can do to avoid future negative consequences.
Lastly, catch your teenager being good. It is so easy to point out all the things they are struggling with. Look for the good things they are doing. They are there. Catch them being good and point it out. Praise them. Reward them.
Parenting a Teenager and Seeking Outside Help
This obviously is not the end all be all but some things to think about and consider. If you want to learn more or need help guiding conversations with boundaries with your teenager or with your parent or co-parenting adult contact us at High Expectation Counseling. Meet the team and choose which therapist you feel will be the right fit. We can help you address these issues and more to guide you during this time and working with you and your teenager. Contact us at 407-967-1327 and up an appointment.