If you are teen parenting, you already know the difficulties that involve raising your teenager. It seems, in these times, that teen parenting is seen as an overwhelming, impossible task. But it doesn't have to be! Would you like to have your teens parenting you, or you parent teen?
Common Mistakes During Teens Parenting:
One of the biggest mistakes parents make when being a parent teen is trying and accomplishing becoming their teens best friend. Once this happens, your teens parenting you! You lose all of your disciplinary powers, and become a friend, not a parent. They will no longer listen to your rules, and blow you off, just as they do with their friends. The myth that some parents think will help during teens parenting is that by becoming their friend your teen will love you and respect you.
Unfortunately, the opposite happens. Your teen will always love you, but they will lose respect for you. By losing respect they will no longer feel the need to follow your rules and answer probing questions, because you are not teens parenting anymore, you are just a friend. You must find the balance in parenting, where your teen feels comfortable coming to you for advice and to talk, and that they will respect you and your rules. Only then will your teens parenting you stop, and you become the parent! Stand your ground, and never cave in!
Helpful Tips and Information on How to Deal With Unruly Teens:
Some teenagers get into trouble by not doing chores, using alcohol or drugs, shoplifting, dating, having sex, skipping school, smoking and getting up for school. You don't need a boot camp (as far as I know) to help fix these problem behaviors, you need some appropriate discipline.
Different discipline methods work differently on different kids. There is one method, called 1-2-3 Magic, which is great for kids 2-12. You can find out more here: http://www.parentmagic.com/shoppingcart/prodlist.cfm?categoryid=1
They also have products for adolescents, and you can probably find some of their books in your local library.
There are more, many methods of discipline, but the most important thing is to stick to your guns.
7 Rules of Discipline:
1. Recognize when your teen is trying to manipulate you. (Such as saying "I hate you, or I don't care anyway") They really mean the opposite!
2. Don't bribe them.
3. Be consistent.
4. Establish clear and concise rules and consequences so that there is no confusion.
5. Reward good behavior - always.
6. Be prepared for resistance! If you stick to everything and stand your ground, it will only be temporary.
7. Always remember, teens want discipline, even though it doesn't seem like they do. By disciplining them, you are showing that you care about them and love them. They will thank you for your "tough love" when they mature!
Teens aren't really ever taught to manage stress, so when it comes along, they usually vent it by using anger or depression. You can help teach them to manage stress.
First, they must be able to identify the stress, including emotions, feelings - such as feeling overwhelmed. Teaching your child how to recognize these things will start them on their way to managing stress. One is feeling worried about something, such as an upcoming test. Make sure you or your teen is able to identify this worrying and look for nervous behaviors.
Let them know it's more than okay to ask for help. They don't need to do everything alone. They can ask you, a teacher, a school counselor, or a classmate. Emotional support alone can be enough to bring them through a stressful time.
Divide and conquer! Teach your teen how to separate a task into smaller, easier to handle tasks. As they complete each smaller task, they will feel more accomplished and less stressed.
Let them relax, whether it's music, going for a walk, etc. Their life is mostly made up of school, friends and homework. They need to relax, just like anyone else.
Let them have a constructive way to vent, such as a journal. Assure them that this is theirs and theirs only - no one else will ever read it. Journaling can be very comforting and stress-relieving, especially knowing no one will read it.
Teach them how to set priorities so they are not overwhelmed by homework, school, chores, extracurricular activities, sports, etc. Help them make a to do list with the most important task at the top, descending to the least important.
Exercise, eating and sleeping well can also help reduce stress.
These stress-managing skills will help them throughout their lives, not just now!