How To Cope With a Difficult Teenager

Tips For Working Parents:

Parenting teenagers has never been easy. It’s difficult to understand a teenager who seems to be living a life full of drama. The funny thing is that teens don’t understand themselves either.

On the one hand, they strive for individuality and want to be independent. On the other hand, they don’t have much life experience and crave acceptance in society. They feel sad when their parents don’t care about their problems, yet roll their eyes whenever their folks want to hug them in public.

As a parent of a troubled teen, you should understand that your child is not an alien. Things are going to improve with time. Right now, your teen has rapid mood swings because they experience a number of emotional, physical, and social challenges. It might affect their academic performance and your parent-child relationship.

Your responsibility is to learn how to cope with your teenager in the best possible way. Here is what you need to know about surviving teen’s years:

Be Assertive

A permissive parenting style might not be a good idea if you are raising a teenager. If you don’t know how to be assertive with your kids, consider enrolling in a psychology course online or making an appointment with a therapist.

Otherwise, your teenager might take advantage of your weakness and do things their way. You might think that it can be a good parenting method since your child has a chance to learn on their own. However, your teenager doesn’t have much experience, so they might make a lot of mistakes with devastating consequences. That’s why you should be there for them.

It doesn’t mean you should keep them at home all the time and try to raise an obedient child. On the contrary, you should explain your reasons behind the rules you want to impose in your house. Moreover, you should know how to cooperate and negotiate with your kid.

That’s right, your teenager will not always do everything you say. They want to be able to make their own decisions, so you should take their opinions and feelings into account.

Set the Rules

Most teenagers don’t see the difference between bad and good, and they are not mind-readers. They might not be aware that some of their words and actions hurt their parents.

To prevent conflicts, you should establish clear boundaries. Explain to your kid what’s allowed, what’s not, and why things look like this in your house. Let them know that you will treat them with respect as long as they will treat you the same way.

Show Empathy

All these teen dramas might be unreasonable and funny, but your kid doesn’t think so. For them, it’s the end of the world since they face a lot of problems for the first time and simply don’t know how to cope with their negative emotions.

That’s why you should treat your teenager’s problems seriously and try to be empathetic. Your kid’s behaviour or words might hurt you. Don’t allow your teen to provoke you. Instead, you should walk away and take a deep breath. It doesn’t mean you should exclude their unacceptable behaviour.

All you need to do is to understand what your child might feel during this period. Once upon a time, you also were a troubled teenager (yes, you were as horrible as your kid right now).

If you start screaming and acting unreasonably with your teen, you might ruin your parent-child relationship.

Be There

Most teenagers think that they are too complicated and that no one will ever understand them. Once again, they just can’t understand themselves. If you see that your teenager is under some distress, let them know that you are there for them and that you can listen without judgement.

Every teenager should have at least one trusted adult they can talk to in case of ‘the end of the world.’

Once your child tells you what worries them, make sure not to share the details of their private lives with your friends or a partner (unless your teen wants it for some reason).

You can offer your input only if your kid agrees to hear it first. They might not always be interested in your opinion. However, they will appreciate it if you just listen to them without evaluation.

Cope with your Stress

Don’t project your insecurities and fears into your child no matter what. If you find parenting a teenager an exhausting experience, make sure to find some time for yourself. You need to allow yourself to relax and spoil yourself from time to time.

In case you can’t cope with stress on your own, consider asking a friend or your relatives to help you out. Also, consider joining a support group for parents or going to a therapist.