If your daughter tells you she has been on a date with her boyfriend or your son tells you that he tried a bottle of beer with friends after school, is it a good or a bad news? When adolescents come and share their ‘experiments’, ‘thrills’, ‘encounters’, ‘issues’, no matter how grave they are - it is good news for parents.
Till your child doesn’t share with you his world, how can you possibly ever be of any help to him? So listen to them without any judgment. It is not easy, as the protective parent in you will overpower you again and again. But the moment you preach and moralize, your child will run away from you.
Remember you have been through this confusion yourself as a teenager. All you needed at that time was someone who could understand you. Just be understanding, that’s the best way to sail through the storm of adolescence with your child.
Here are few questions with answers, which could help in understanding their child more and also better the relationship everyday.
What is an adolescent going through?
Physical and sexual changes
Pressure to get good marks and plan future
Pressure to fit in the peer group
Development of values and thoughts
What adolescents need from parents?
They need ‘listening’, without judgments and reactions.
What they don’t need from parents?
What adolescents don’t know about parents?
Parents may not be the ‘coolest’ friend, but certainly the most reliable one in the whole world!
How can you be a support to your adolescent child?
Listen and acknowledge their feelings, never moralize or deny them.
Share anecdotes and stories from your teenage life, he will feel you have also grown up like a ‘normal’ adolescent.
Don’t make decisions; empower them to reach to a conclusion.
Don’t take their ‘No’ as a sign of disrespect, they are simply discovering their mind.
Assure them, you will be there no matter what ‘wrong’ they do.
(About the Author: Manmeet Narang is a parent coach at Parwarish Institute of Parenting. She has also written many books on children.)
To know more about Parwarish Institute of Parenting, log on to www.parwarish.c