Teens can be tricky to communicate with! Many parents hear more grunts and silence then they do words when trying to get their teenager to share and open up. This week Imagine Hope will focus on specific things parents can do to help draw out more open communication with their teens.
#1 Seize Moments as They Come Up
Has your teen ever asked, "Does this look okay?" or "Do you think I'm smart?" These opportunities might present themselves at random moments, so as a parent you need to pay attention!
When your child asks you a question like this, they are cracking the door to something deeper. You just need to respond in a way that opens the door further.
What do you think would happen if you said, "I do think you are smart. Tell me more about what made you ask that." Depending on their response, you might be given huge pieces of the puzzle to what they are insecure about. You might find out they are stressed about getting good grades or struggling in a class. Maybe they are being made fun of for something.
Remember that their brains are working in there :) So something was being thought in there before they even asked you the question! Ask questions about their questions to find out more about their thoughts.
If your teen still closes off, check in tomorrow for how you being open about yourself can invite your teen to do it too!
Thanks for reading!
Written by Teri Claassen MSW, LCSW, LCAC
Teri Claassen MSW, LCSW, LCAC is a licensed therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Teri enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, couples and relationship counseling. Teri also does family counseling, child counseling, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Zionsville, and Westfield.