By: Dr. Erica Wollerman
The teenage (and often pre-teen) years are known to be a challenging time for everyone (parents, other siblings, teachers, and the teen themselves). I know I remember how challenging my teenage years were! Teens are generally known to be a walking contradiction and this can be so difficult to know how to approach. They want your attention and time but then they want you to disappear at other times. They want your advice, then they are angry that you gave it. At times, nothing you do will seem right to them! One of the most important conversations I have with parents in my office is discussing the fact that all of the above is generally typical for teen development.
In essence, teenage years are a period of growth and development as an individual outside of the family. Teens are most often craving independence and autonomy, much like the toddler or “terrible 2” years. It is vital to your child’s development that they are permitted to stretch their wings a bit, within reason, so that they are able to develop a sense of self-efficacy around their ability to effectively interact with the world. Will they make mistakes? Most likely they will. However, my view is that life is not about avoiding mistakes but making lots of mistakes and hopefully learning from each one. Plus, it’s important for a person to cope through their mistakes and to make some mistakes while the stakes are a bit smaller (prior to adulthood).
Here are some tips to help you along the way:
Thank you for reading! Please feel free to share this information or leave other tips and ideas for parenting teens in the comments! Thank you from the team at Thrive Therapy Studio, therapists for teens San Diego CA.
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