We all know that the teen years can be viewed as a journey from childhood to adulthood, but consider that teen parenting can be seen as a similar journey. In the growing teen, they are dealing with getting older, accepting more responsibilities that they never had before, raging hormonal changes, discovering their own identity, and a struggle for independence. All of these things make teen parenting a challenge, since teens can go from one extreme to the other in the blink of an eye.
One more teen stress that needs to be considered is the inevitable want to fit in, to be accepted by their friends and peers. This force is incredibly strong, nobody wants to be unaccepted or shunned, so this is also something to consider when you are doing teen parenting.
Why are these facts laid out at the beginning? Because in countless studies of the conversations that take place in counseling centers across the nation, the phrases commonly heard by the teens regarding their parents are things like “you don’t understand” and “leave me alone”. It is true, as parents we tend to forget what our teen years were like just a few short years ago, where we had exactly the same issues to be dealing and struggling with, and understanding what is going on in the teen mind and what is important to today’s teen can go a long ways to having a better relationship and more open communications with your teen.
Teen parenting is also a struggle on walking a very fine line between enforcing rules and limitations without negatively impacting the teen’s sense of freedom. This is indeed a fine line and parents will inevitably cross that line sometimes, which can turn their once-cuddly little baby into a fierce alien from another planet. Teen parenting is not an easy task, and nobody will advocate just giving the teen free rein to do what they wish, since they seem to know it all anyway. Rather, effective teen parenting skills include patience, creativity, and courage to set and lovingly enforce the rules and boundaries that need to exist in a household.
This fine line should be seen as a challenge that you can overcome in order to teach your teen values and to know right from wrong. In the process of teen parenting, take the necessary steps to guide your child into adulthood by instilling social values, setting and achieving goals, which will aid their emerging independence and set a line for keeping things on the right track for the future. By all means, do NOT view this as a cumbersome task that you are just not up to. Teens will sense this and will stretch your patience to the breaking point. Maintain focus!
In teen parenting, it is critically important to keep a good solid and loving relationship in place, with a wide-open door of communications. While you are the parent, you can also be the best friend, someone they can feel free to confide in and to ask advice of. While not a topic to dwell on, let them know that you were once in their shoes, and you DO understand what they are going through and what they are struggling with. As strange as it may sound, that fact may come as a surprise to your teen, who might view you as never having been in your teens!
For more information about Teen Parenting please visit our web site at http://www.parenting-skills-explained.com
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