Many parents fear the dreaded teenage years of their children’s  life as a time of distress, miscommunications, and rebellion.  However, this does not have to be the case for your family.  

Plenty of parents have wonderful relationships with their children all through the teen years and entering into adulthood.  

The teenage years are no different from the toddler years, it’s simply a matter of adjusting your technique to an upgraded version.

Teenagers are still human, and at the core of every human is someone who simply wants to be understood.  Teen drug abuse is a symptom of a child who is searching for understanding and acceptance.

Follow these teen parenting tips, and increase your likelihood of having a fantastic relationship with your child, at any age.

Spend Quality Time Together

Spending time with your child can be so much easier said than done.  Between work, other siblings, or simply catching up on life, we can lose sight of all the quality time we are missing out on.

Try to set aside at least 45 minutes a day when you can interact by either talking one on one, going for a walk, playing a game, or taking them along on a task such as grocery shopping.  They may groan about it, but after it’s finished, they will have a greater sense of belonging and community.

Teens who spend a lot of time alone or feeling ignored tend to gravitate towards emotional isolation and depression.

Eat Dinner as a Family

For a modern day multi-child family, sitting down at the dinner table together every night can be a major hurdle.  If everyone has different schedules, try setting at least three times a week to sit down and eat together.  

Scheduling your dinner together should be no different from scheduling an appointment or going to work. Make it a priority.  

Instead of pitching it as an obligation or something everyone has to begrudgingly do, make it a fun and interactive event.  Perhaps you do a taco night, where everyone gets to make their tacos together.

Perhaps you go to a restaurant for a family meal.  By making it enjoyable, you ensure it becoming an even more recurring event.

Don’t Ridicule Their Choices

If your teenager comes out of their bedroom dressed in fashion that looks absurd to you, take a moment and remember how cool you thought hammer pants were.  How about shoulder pads and big hair? You used to think those were perfectly normal fashion choices that are now culturally hilarious.

Embrace your teen’s generation, and as long as they aren’t doing anything to hurt anyone, take a moment to explore whether questioning their choice is worth it. Positive reinforcement over negative goes a long way. How about a high five instead!

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