Understanding Teenage Parenting
Parents of adolescents are often confronted by a puzzling sequence of events. First, teenagers bring us their problems; second, we earnestly offer suggestions and solutions; and third, teenagers dismiss our ideas as irritating, irrelevant or both.
These moments it should feel a ripe for connection. Why do they so often turn sour? Almost always, it’s because we’re not giving teenagers what they’re really looking for. Consciously or not, here’s what they most likely want. Much of what bothers teenagers cannot be solved. We can’t fix their broken hearts, prevent their social dramas, or do anything about the fact that they have three huge tests scheduled for the same day. But having a problem is not nearly so bad as feeling utterly alone with it. To further express our solidarity we might ask, “Do you want me to stay nearby, or would it help to have some time alone?” or “Is there anything I can do that won’t make things feel worse?” These questions send the powerful message that we are not put off by the teenager’s distress and will stick with them, even when nothing can be done. As hard as it is for parents to stop ourselves, rushing in with suggestions carries the risk that you’ll be communicating the idea, “You can’t fix this, but I can.” This might strike our teenagers as a vote of no confidence when they are mainly seeking our reassurance that they can handle whatever life throws at them.
Instead of proposing solutions, we might bolster adolescents as they sort things out. Saying, “I’ve seen you get through things like this before” or “This is tough, but you are too” can effectively loan teenagers a bit of perspective and confidence when their own feels shaken. Conflict happens when two people disagree based on their own goals, values, or beliefs. It’s not always as simple as an argument. Rather, conflict is what happens right before the argument; it’s what the participants disagree about before they start calling each other names. Parents and teenagers inherently have many opportunities to experience conflict with one another. Adolescence is a time when independence and parental influence clash, since teens are able to think on their own but still live with parents who have rules and expectations for them. Teenagers don’t necessarily hold the same beliefs and values as their parents, and their goal to have fun conflicts with their parents’ goal to keep them safe.
MAJOR REASONS WHY THERE’S CONFLICT IN THE FAMILY BETWEEN PARENTS AND TEENAGERS:
- Cell Phone Overuse
- Romantic Relationships
- Less to No Interest in studies
- Complaints often from school
- Early interests in adult activities like smoking, drinking, pornography etc.
We, being parents should definitely try and intervening the issues they are facing but not always, they are ready to listen to you because already the conflicts have begun and the more, we try to intervene, the more we might spoil the relationship. There’s a reason why professional psychologists exists so they can intervene to rescue a burning relationship or even reverse the damages that might have been already done.
Contact us if you currently are facing or going through such situations.