Child Development Parental Advice

Preparing for the teenage years

The teenage years can pose great challenges and conflicts for both teenagers and their parents. Parents may discover that the relationship they had with their preteen child is changing. Effective and consistent communication is essential to help both the parents and the child feel more connected

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The teenage years can pose great challenges and conflicts for both teenagers and their parents. Parents may discover that the relationship they had with their preteen child is changing. Effective and consistent communication is essential to help both the parents and the child feel more connected in their relationship. Teenagers desire more independence. Having established that fact, teenagers however still need rules and guidance to help them overcome their new challenges which may include dealing with social media, going to a new school, navigating the new environment and making new friends.

Independence and self-control

Healthy, motivated and self-disciplined teenagers desire a strong sense of control over their lives. A happy and successful teenager is the result of that teenager being able to obtain what they value through their own efforts. This sense of control will lead to lower stress, higher emotional well-being, greater intrinsic motivation and self-discipline. While parents may have managed their children’s lives when they were younger, teenagers are preparing themselves for adulthood. This is the time when making independent decisions concerning their welfare is crucial and necessary for their well-being.

It would be helpful and more effective for parents to communicate to their teenagers when and which rules are essential to follow, for example, those regarding their safety. Parents could encourage independent choices during specific circumstances when it is more important for their teen to feel they are being listened to. Parents who recognise the confidence and maturity in their teenagers to permit them to make informed decisions on their own, send a powerful message to the teenager that they are growing up to be reliable and trusted individuals.

Setting rules and respecting privacy

New rules and guidelines would have to be made regarding the friends they spend time with, study routine and bedtime rules. A recommendation to help teenagers not be overwhelmed by social media is to suggest social media-free times. Time should be set aside for chats with the teenager to allow them to express their thoughts and feelings. Teenagers appreciate their new-found independence and they also appreciate and need their parents to listen to what they are saying. There is a need for a balance between respecting their privacy and intervening when there are obvious signs that the teenager may require help. This is could be help with a specific problem or perhaps help with schoolwork.

Determining your child’s needs

Should your teenager feel overwhelmed with their schoolwork you may wish to consider a tutor who could give them the additional help that they require. It is essential to determine your child’s needs when considering tutoring for your child. Group tutoring might be beneficial for some teenagers if they excel when learning with others. A private tutor who can provide one-on-one attention is more suitable for a child who may be shy or who learns better on his/her own.

Thus, preparing for the teenage years is a duration of time to refocus on what your child or teenager requires to grow into a confident and well-adjusted individual.