Teenager is your once newborn or infant who now has a term “teen” attached after her age ie- 13 teen, 14teen…….19teen.
Parenting teenagers can be little different than earlier years of parenting
Teenage or adolescence is a time in a human’s life when he stands between what we called “childhood” and “youth”. Your young one is probably around your height and her shoes almost fit you or are even bigger!!
As per dictionary a teenager is a young person between the age of 13 and 19.
There are a few things that’s typical of teenagers age range in general. As they prepare to step into adulthood but are exactly not yet there, it is easy to get confused with many things. Both for the teenager and parents.
This is when the body and mind actually get the characteristics of the “gender” and your “baby” is actually transform to be a “man” or a “woman” before you blink!!
Every parent has their own style of parenting teenagers and most things you will do instinctively. At the same time it is good to know what is coming ahead so that you are better prepared. Parenting teenagers need extra caution at times. Also if you want to get a good parenting tips for teenagers you just need to know about all the things in a good manner for understanding about your teenage kids
For the sake of better clarity we section this article into parts we feel “good to know” for todays generation of parents(of newborn, toddlers,preschoolers or school going kids) who are on the verge of becoming parent of a teenager.
13 awesome TIPs on teenager behaviour
1. Parenting teenagers-Listening actively to your teenage child
Children this age are vulnerable, curious, often confused and sometimes irritated.
The reason for this is simply their age.
They are neither kids nor adults.
Just like their body their mind too is at this juncture.
Even we adults tell them often that they should behave a certain way as they are no longer kids.
Sounds familiar right?
The solution to all this is just to be more connected to your child by getting yourself involved in her evolution process.
To do this you need to know what’s happening with her.
You need to listen to your child very carefully and sometimes read between the lines and check if you got it right.
Once they know you are genuinely interested, they will share much more with you and here half the battle is owned.
So listen to your teenage child with care and the adolescent years will be easier to handle.
2.Setting rules for their behavior
Set a pattern for what is expected of them and should they behave.
One good idea is to tell them lovingly on their birthdays that this is how you expect them to be as they are now ready for adulthood.
For example, now that they are more independent, they should have set time for returning home after play or that they must wish relatives by calling them on their birthdays.
Show them that expect them to be more responsible.
When your child is about 12 years, they can contribute by doing easier tasks like, making bed, filling water bottles, wiping table after dinner, switching off lights of the entire house at night and so on.
I am just trying to give you ideas here.
I want you to be creative with them and show them that they are being looked up.
This helps a lot.
3.Parenting teenagers-Set consequences for breaking rules
Your child is learning.
She will make mistakes in the process and it is your duty to set her right.
Children this age often tend to be rebellious if with over vigilance.
So please do that.
Instead to make them follow set rules, prepare a consequence of breaking a rule when to set the rule itself.
Tell them what happens if they don’t abide by their set rules.
For example , they don’t get to have their favorite pizza over the weekend if they don’t return home on time everyday of the week.
This way they will be more careful and know that there is a consequence of everything.
4. Parenting teenagers-Guide your young adult child to reflect over their own actions
This is the best way to teach them self control and get more self confident.
Tell them stories of your past and what you think of them now or what was the result of your behaviour.
Encourage them to reflect on their own actions and behaviors.
In this age it is a good idea to have them enrolled in a self development class once or twice a week.
This helps them be in track as they are constantly being reminded of strategies on self development.
5. Role model for teenage children are good to have
It is best for your grown up baby to think that you are her role model.
Your behavior and temperament should be such that your kid is proud to follow you.
Also encourage your child to have a famous personality as her role model.
This helps them to fantasize their role model’s as their own as they want to be as much closer to the famous figure as possible.
This gets them to do well and be serious about what they want to do.
They want to work hard as their role model and this is a good sign.
Get them books on the prominent figure too.
This will not only build their reading habits but also they will stay motivated.
In my personal opinion, I would prefer a physical book for this purpose than a kindle or e-book. This is psychological.
Get them stay close to their role models in the form of books while they always have the option to read about them wherever they want.
Everyone of us go through rough times. Try to keep composure in-front of your teenage children at such times.
Your child will definitely follow you when they themselves face a difficult situation and this eventually will help them to take better decisions.
6. Parenting teenagers - Take your teenage child seriously
Teenage is a very tender age. You will see your child being serious and silly at the same Time. But remember that’s your point of view and there’s huge gap in the time you were his age and him now.
One mistake we all do mostly is thinking how we were that age and not take them seriously.
Keep in mind that times have changed and things that you may feel differently about everything.
There are often clashes in families because of this.
You have to start seeing the world from his eyes.
If you can do this, your child and you will be able to understand each other better and this will get things better and create a bonding.
Children understand if you are making an effort and appreciate it.
So show that you care for her in any situation and she will respect that.
Whatever be the situation take your children seriously and act on it if required.
Do not just hush them at any point.
This makes them feel that they are being silly to you and you do not care much.
Show interest and give your opinion gently wherever required.
They are grown up now and need not be told every small things.
Choose matters and comment where ever important .
They need space at this age and you need to respect that.
What happens when you share your feelings with your teen age children? Your children understand various facets of life and learns to see the world from someone else’s point of view.
When you share your feelings with them , you will have discussions with them. These discussions will not only bring you closer as family but they will have more confidence in you and you both will understand each other better.
Also, if you regularly share your feelings and often have a heart to heart conversation with your teenage children, they will learn to do the same.
This way you can better prepare them for everything ahead and they will not think twice to tell you anything.
8. Parenting teenagers-Praise your adolescent child
Praise them for every small thing they do. At this age every small thing matters too much.
If you scold them, they will be deeply hurt and if you praise them they will be super happy inside.
Your praise will boost their confidence as well. So praise them.
Praise also works as bridge of communication and connects the parent and child.
If you praise them for their good deeds even if small, they will know that you are watchful of them and that they are important to you.
Praise creates positivity. So keep up the positive vibe with your child.
9. Look for ways to stay connected with your young adult
We parents often feel that our teenage children are getting emotionally distant from us.
Relax….most of the time this is not true.
This is because these kids are having too much to handle physically, emotionally, socially, academically and many more…..and remember it’s happening to them quite suddenly within a matter of few years.
They like being on their own, might digest social gatherings, behave silly at times and get temperamental at times.
This is a law of this age, so parents do not loose cool and get panicked.
I am sure this time you want to connect more and more with your child.
Simply because you want to know what is going on in their lives and you are at times worried.
Some easy ways to connect with your teenage child are:
– Go for movies with them
– Join a sports or yoga or swim together
– Cook together once a week
– Go for vacations
– exchange story books and discuss them
– Talk about social events
– Call their friends home for dinner or stay over. Be in good terms with their friends parents as well. This is very important if you have a teen age child.
– Visit their school or college at times without notice for picking them up.
– Try to keep in touch with them and find ways to talk to them. You have to find topics that interest them.
Parenting teenagers? Keep your promises
Try to keep your promises. If you cannot keep your promises for some reason, Explain to them why you can’t.
They will mostly understand. Tell them that you will keep your promise at a later date and that your words are not empty.
Let the adolescent know that you may postpone your plan but you will always keep your words.
This gives them confidence and they get friendlier.
They also learn to assess your situations better which eventually make them a cooperative and understanding human everyone loves.
11. Encourage a sense of belonging to your teenage child
Developing a sense of belonging will make your child more responsible and they will value things better.
Everything comes at a price and we need to work for it. At this adolescence years , it is time that they understand this from core.
12. Setting realistic expectation is very important for the adolescent
While your child should be confident, remember that she should set realistic expectations at this age.
Teach her to fly high and prepare accordingly.
She should know that the result of anything is the amount of hard work gone on it with a dash of luck.
While failing is not the end of this world, preparing oneself for everything is also important.
I am a mother of two and as I see them grow I realize kids not only have peer pressure but also sometimes set expectations that is beyond their capacity.
This calls for down time. If they dream high, they should train themselves for tough training consistently and considerably.
Teach them that nothing is impossible but nothing comes easy.
Let them be prepared for the world they are going to face shortly.
13. Learn to look for humor together with your young adult
Now this one part that I enjoy the most though my first born is not yet teenage.
As they grow , I realize my boy is getting a cheeky side and indulging in funny things together is a high with him I just love to have a humor time together.
Try to get the humor going in things you do and you will enjoy this phase of the child growing up.
Discussing movies, an old experience, a book that either of you read, some quotes and anything actually…. Make your days light and full of hilarious times.
You will notice that your teenager who is otherwise likes to keep to herself, also opens up when they enjoy and laugh.
Parenting teenagers with physical and emotional changes
What to expect
I know that is one expected question but there is no proper answer to this.
All I can tell you is that you will see lot of physical changes in your child of this age and there development also happens at a different pace for every child.
The gender differentiation happens at this age both mentally and physically.
Remember this is a challenging time for your teenage child as well.
Don’t be surprised if you find them,
– Jittery and restless at times
– Angry for small things
– Unreasonable at times
– Keep to themselves
– Friends become most important
– Unable to focus
– Sudden interest towards the opposite sex
They are going through hormonal changes along with physical changes.
Handle them carefully, respect them, try to connect to them well and they will be alright.
We all have gone through this stage
hough around 95% of your Child’s brain id formed by her schooling age, it is during the adolescence that the brain kind of remodels itself.
Your child’s hormonal changes ,experience and age will determine the way her brain shapes up and is ready to act like an adult.
For some kids, puberty strikes early and for some a bit late.
Brain change happens alongside puberty.
If you notice physical changes in your child, most likely his brains have started developing to towards adulthood.
During this time, your Child’s brain is learning to become more efficient.
But how efficient it will become depend son the way it is used.
So keep a tap on what activities they choose, how are they spending their time and how much they are learning.
If you feel your child is becoming teary and over emotional at times, this is because the part of the brain that controls emotions are also in growing stage.
Resilience of your teenage child
Positive thinking, exposure to different situations, travel and your support and friendship can create resilience in children.
In todays time this is becoming increasingly important.
No breaking down and getting up from a failure is something we all learn in life gradually through experience.
But in todays times as social dynamics are changing, we need to prepare out children specially the teens and adolescents, that its ok to fail provided you try harder the next time.
So built in your own strategies to make your child resilient and they will develop to be stronger individuals.
Periods and hygiene
I feel it is a good idea to mentally prepare the girls before menstruation.
Explain the science and that they are physically able to bear a child now.
This puts them in perspective and they naturally become responsible around this time.
Hygiene factor is something you need to guide them initially.
The easiest to get them books on this which are age related.
They get ready automatically.
Just keep in mind, they should not get wrong information or get information the wrong way.
Be friendly, gentle and cooperative with them.
Your girl should not feel like hiding anything from you at this stage.
They might restrict themselves from the outside for few days after the process starts, but with your support , it will get normal soon.
Parenting teenagers? Social & emotional changes of your teenager
Children this age are a bit confused of their identity.
They are actually trying to find out exactly what they want in life, who they are growing up to be and what do they expect from themselves.
Actually they feel the social dynamics at this age suddenly and sometimes become over sensitive to them.
This is the times as parents you need to make them understand that there is no right without responsibility.
Early teen is an age when your child will try to take responsibility and want to become an adult.
They will not like particularly if someone treats them like kids!
Some children become adventurous, risk taking and they want to try out new things.
Actually you can do a lot with them this time and find out what they are good at .
They will have their own opinion and values will be imbibed strongly.
If you find your values are contradicting your child’s, do not be overwhelmed.
They are a different generation and the world around them is different.
If you strongly feel they are off track with their value system, use your friendship with her to make her get your point of view.
Do not force yourself in anyway.
Teenagers often get to understand certain things on their own as time pass and they gain experience.
You may find your child be influenced by people.
There are so many people they meet, talk to and spend time with.
Peers, teachers, family members everybody can influence them at this age.
Let your child see the world and listen to every body’s point of view on all subjects.
Your duty is to guide them to decide for themselves and see to it that they are on track and not influenced wrongly.
Parenting teenagers? Ready them for puberty
The only way you can help at this time is to talk to them about puberty and what to expect.
You have to find your ways and the best time to do that.
-I can give you some ideas on this. -Pick the topic when you are watching TV and some related stuff comes up
– Talk about this when they are relaxed and ready.
If you feel they don’t want to talk about it now, do not force and try some other time
– Find out what are they learning in school on this subject and that it happens to everyone but at different times.
– Tell them that its also a sign that their brains are growing and they are on the way becoming an adult from a kid.
– You can approach this topic also while watching a movie or reading a book.
– Try to find out if they have these conversations with their friends and tell them that they should not be misinformed.
– Explain the kind of physical changes expected irrespective of gender.
– It helps to be scientific in your approach. Inform boys and girls have physical changes and why this happens and what hormones do to human bodies.
– Get them books to read on this subject so they understand the science behind it.
Parenting teenagers going to school
But this step should come only if you see a serious symptoms of a problem or learning disabilities.
So how will you detect.
–f you feel your child is way behind other children of her age in any part of academics, consult the teacher in school first.
Take opinion from school.
-If they too feel there is a problem, they might suggest you or ask you to meet the school councilor if they have the option.
Please meet in such cases and discuss to plan better.
There are certain learning problems that occur just because adolescent children are easily distracted and sometimes do not keep us consistency in their curriculum.
To set this right I will have time tables that you may follow for children of different ages.
This arrests a lot of learning problems and children become independent early on.
I have also seen children who learn very quickly but have problems writing.
These children might have problem with gripping the pen and moving at times.
This problem better be arrested when they are younger by getting them to practice writing.
They will be initially reluctant to write as they simply find writing tedious.
But setting them to a daily routine of writing with your presence in front of them initially can solve the problem.
The key is to keep on writing.
Some adolescent children read and write without any difficulty but may find it difficult to remember.
This problem generally gets fine with age but you can do a few things to improve memory power like playing memory games or asking them to explain past lessons.
One important thing I would like to mention here is that children generally forget things they are not interested in.
So the trick is to get them interested in subjects in different ways.
Connecting the theory lessons to practical experience can do the trick.
Show them videos, take them to experience lessons practically in different forms, explain the science behind all household activities, how everything functions etc.
Children learn better and remember better this way.
Tips on Homework help for schoolgoing and teenage children
Set the right environment
1. Let the kid study and do her homework in the same place. This was they create an association and can concentrate better.
2. Keep everything handy like pen, paper, books etc so that getting up is not required often
3. Study at the same time. The time depends on the comfortability of the child when she is energetic. Make sure they make academics a way of their life by doing this regularly.
4. Make sure you have a quiet surrounding while they study and avoid distractions.
5. In case they have their own phone, they must keep it away while they study or keep it switched off.
Set a pattern of work they should follow
1. Regularity is the most important factor for teenage children and this keeps them always ready. They need not panic and sit for longer hours during an exam or assessments.
2. A pattern in any activity consistently will bring about good results. If they lag in anything, make sure they repeat it. For example – If they find math difficult, make sure they do it everyday.
3.Help them organize their workspace and teach them do it.
4.Encourage self study as they grow up. You play the role of a guide only.
5.Teach them to be goal oriented by keeping a time out for every subject
Parenting teenagers? Handle technology and teenage child
The internet has opened a world of information to us.
As much as it is a benefit, it can become a bit of nuisance if not handled responsibly.
A teenage child who is just learning to handle herself, might find the virtual world intimidating.
So what can you do as a parent?
1. Talk to your child with example about the fact that it is up to us how we use technology.
For example a knife can be a murder weapon and an surgical instrument.
Both used for opposite purposes.
2. Talk to them about self control and motivation.
Both can be found virtually over the internet.
3. Restrict screen time as per their age.
4. Encourage reading physical books over e- books when they are younger
5. Never ever allow any gadget while doing an activity like eating, playing, writing etc.
Let them know from the beginning that screen time is exclusive and you cannot mix up things.
6. Set screen time in a way that they look forward to it.
For example let this be a reward for something good they do or so.
This way they will associate screen time with an occasional treat.
7. Encourage going out with friends rather than sharing screen time at home.
As someone said – “YOUTH COMES BUT ONCE IN A LIFETIME”, Let your precious children enjoy their upcoming youth but at the same time prepare them for it too.