Saturday, August 16, 2008

How to Handle Your Teenager Better?

Teens is a very turbulent phase, a period of stress, intense feeling and endless doubts. But with a little understanding you can foster a wonderful relationship with your teen son or daughter.

Your child could turen rebellious, non-conformist or get into a shell. The child is undergoing physical and psychological changes, much of which he can't comprehend. Its at these times that parents must be patient, helpful, understanding emphathetic and friendly.

Don't criticize all the time
Parents, generally think they 'know it all'. They seem to be perfectionists, often forgetting their own teens. "Don't be silly". "That not the way to do it. Its highly unbecoming of you". One hardly realizes the damage being done to a teen's psychology. The "I know better" policy isn't always right. Give you child the chance to grow up, with all his faults. He'll overcome them soon, with the confidence you place in him. Accept him with all his 'pimples.' He'll make you proud one day. Don't be judgemental about everything, warn psychologists.

Respect his privacy
Suddenly when your daughter moves into her teens, she'll demand a cupboard, table, bed and even a bedroom for herself. She's just behaving like a normal adolescent. Many children complain about parents eavesdropping on their calls, checking out their hangouts, tapping phone calls, prying on their room in their absence or reading their diary. All this is a violation of your child's privacy. And you must respect it. Breach of trust only leads to widening gap between the two.

Treat them well in the presence of their friends
Anything negative you say tends to hurt your child's self-esteem, more so when his friends are around. How often do you hear a parent say 'Let your friends come I'll tell them what a lazy fellow you are'. It's a great embarassment which lowers his/ her prestige in the eyes of his/ her peers. The intention to correct him is right, but this approach is loaded with failure driving him do just the opposite.

Smoking, drinking and drugs
Parents of teenagers don't sleep well. Fears of all kind haunt them. Many parents feel strongly about smoking and drinking and drugs. Adolescents smoke, drink and puff cocaine because it symbolizes escape, freedom, defying authority and signifying transition to adulthood.
Don't bring the roof down if he comes home drunk. Take it easy. Don't sermonize. Help him keep to his limits. Encourage him to inform you when and with whom he's going for a drink. And when he he'll be home. Ask him to avoid driving, if he isn't steady.

On handling teenagers...
When someone tells you that your son was seen smoking by the canteen, do you?
a. Call up his pals to enquire.
b. Invade his bedroom looking for evidence.
c. Discuss with him as a friend.

When your daughter is on the phone for sometime do you?
a. Eavesdrop to investigate what she's upto
b. Ask her mater of factly "who's that dear."
c. Tell her she's been too long on the phone and she better put it down.

Do you...
a. Keep in touch with his friends
b. Prefer you son meeting them outside
c. Ask your son to keep indoors.

Have you ever discussed the pangs of growing up?
a. No
b. Yes
c. Why should I?

How do you handle his negative traits?
a. Criticise
b. Complain to his dad
c. Build his self-esteem step by step
Answers are...
1.c 2.b 3.a 4.b 5.c

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