Parenting a teen can be an extremely stressful stage for parents. They often feel overwhelmed and sucked into the wild roller coaster ride of adolescence. This can leave a parent unsure of what a healthy role looks like. This week Imagine Hope will help you see 4 key roles you should adopt when parenting the teens in your home.
All week we’ve been discussing the serious topic of self-mutilation and cutting. We’ve discussed why someone may self-harm, how to react to someone who cuts, and how to communicate concern with someone who feels tempted to hurt themselves. The next step is getting in this process is getting professional help. A trained professional can help can help with:
I was at a conference when I heard a well known and respected Psychologist, Henry Cloud, tell a wonderful story. It was about a couple he had counseled. They were sick and tired of their 21 year-old son living with them. He didn't contribute financially or with any of the household chores. They wanted to know how they could fix their son's problem. Henry looked at them and said, "Your son doesn't have a problem. He has it made. YOU all have a problem!"
Today we'll discuss three hot topics for teenagers that parents need to model in order to teach healthy relationships. These three hot topics are: mutual respect, manipulation and manners.
The first place a teenager sees relationship is at home between his/her parents or with her parent's relationships. This makes it crucial that a teen sees a mutually respectful relationship between two people. Many times, in our office, we see teens who are brought to counseling for disrespectful behaviors. One of the first things we look at is how the teen is learning those behaviors and whether or not the teen is witnessing disrespectful behaviors with their parents relationships.
Ahhh, teenagers. Gotta love 'em. They question authority, push boundaries, and are so creative in their thinking. That's why as parents, it's best to be prepared, be specific, and be clear. Yesterday Christy discussed why teens need boundaries in the first place, and why technology boundaries specifically are crucial. Today we'll tackle another important area for teens: Dating.
This week on Imagine Hope’s blog, we are tackling an important yet often controversial topic—setting boundaries with teens. Your teenager will never, ever tell you this—but they crave boundaries. Just like adults want consistency, routine, and to know what is expected of them, teens unknowingly want much of the same. Boundaries create a sense of security, comfort, and an expectation of what is/is not acceptable.
Opportunities to Build Trust
Trust is an essential ingredient in every relationship. Trust is extremely important in marriages, romantic relationships, with our children and other family members. When the person we're in a relationship with feels a lack of trust with us, they lose hope and a sense resentment starts to build.
Today we will wrap up with more discipline techniques and tips to add to your parenting tool box!
- Use role reversals. For example, when speaking to your child, ask them "If you were the mom/dad, what would you do?"
- Provide a rich environment and opportunities. Give your child good learning opportunities and allow them to see a good model for relationships and healthy conflict skills.
Parenting is a fantastically fun job. However, it is the hardest most important job in the world. Part of our responsibility as a parent is to teach our children. The word discipline derives from the Greek word that means “to teach”. Positive discipline is just that, opportunities to teach our children, not punish them.
No doubt, as a parent, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to do things the right way. As a parent, it's a very vulnerable feeling to wonder if you might actually be doing something to contribute to your child's struggles. Therapy is a safe place for your child to discuss not only the things they are struggling with, but to share some of the things they see in their family system that are difficult for them to cope with.
This week on the blog we are discussing the importance of a parent’s role in their child’s counseling. So often, children do not receive the help that they need—not because their parents don’t care, but because their parents may not understand the ways they are sabotaging counseling. This week we hope to provide tips and encouragement so that all children and adolescents get the help that they need.
Here are some more tips Imagine Hope is offering parents to better connect with your children and teens:
- Ask open ended questions (questions that cannot be answered with a simple "yes" or "no").
- Even when you are busy, give them some undivided attention. It shows they are still a priority to you.
- Respect them. If you want them to respect you, you should do the same to them.
- Avoid name calling, put downs, and aggressive words. This can greatly damage their self-esteem and make them feel not good enough.
- Be a good role model. They learn from watching you. So be careful what you do, they might pick it up.
- Don't interrupt.
- Say "I love you" at all ages.
Stay tuned for more tips as the week continues!
Written by: Tamara Portee MA, LMHC, LCAC
*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.