A few years ago my mother said, “You know, you boys weren’t disciplined a whole lot growing up.” I looked at my brother and he looked at me. For a brief moment we wondered if Alzheimer’s was setting in. That’s sure not the way we remember it!
Now I’m not saying we didn’t deserve it…in fact we probably deserved more than we got. But while there was indeed discipline, the style of discipline that we received from our father made it less effective than it could have been. His style was to simply whack us when we got out of line. Along with it came a lot of anger and yelling, and the whole family got upset. Continue reading “Discipline and Teenagers”
“I can do this on my own!” “I don’t need any help!” “Quit treating me like a child!” How do you respond to statements like these from your teenager? Do they upset you, or do you see these as signs of a necessary process taking place?
Rather than viewing such words as a slap in the face from an ungrateful or rebellious child, I encourage you instead to view them as signs that your training is working and that your child is getting ready for adulthood. I’m not saying that anything goes as far as allowing disrespectful words or a really bad attitude, but we need understand that these statements are not inherently rebellious. Look behind the words to what is really going on; it may be that you are holding on too tightly and not giving them enough opportunity to assume responsibility. Continue reading “Encouraging Independence in Your Teen”
We want our children to become independent; to be able to take control of their own lives. A natural and essential part of that maturing process is to make choices for themselves. Every decision they make is another step along the path from total dependence at birth to maturity and independence when they leave home. But their choices won’t always be in line with ours; and that’s when we can feel rejected.
Not every choice teenagers make will seem “right” to their parents. But there is a process they go through to establish their own beliefs, and that often includes rejecting our beliefs, and even us, for a time. So, when they make a choice with which we don’t agree, we have two options. We can step in and assert control over them (treating them like a child again), or we can work through the process with them; taking time to understand why they made the choice they did. I suggest you do the latter. Let me give you some tips to help you work with your teen through this sometimes painful process. Continue reading “When Teens Reject Their Parents”