How to deal with your teenagers. Again

How can you help your daughter or son deal with your grand-children’s terrible teens. How to deal with your teenagers is something every parent has to discover at some point.  You have been through it with them, while they grew up and now your children, who thought they were the perfect modern parents, are getting the same treatment.

We have all been through the slammed door, the sign on the door saying “Jessica’s room keep out!” I was told what to wear to school meetings, what to say and what not to say. My daughter would cringe at my behaviour. But her friends liked my house and came round a lot. Sleeping on my flour, they were safe.

Now those perpetrators of that behaviour, were getting some of their own medicine. But it hurts and you love your children and grandchildren. So I have put some recommendations you could give your children on how to survive.

Here are some ideas for how to deal with your teenagers:-

Being a parent, much to the chagrin of many parents, means being perpetually uncool. When your previously adoring child suddenly turns on you and explains that your very existence is enough to turn him into a permanent social pariah, it can be frustrating. But being embarrassed by their parents is often the first step children take toward adult independence, and it’s completely developmentally normal.

If you can avoid embarrassing your child when her friends visit, you’ll gain much. First, your child will be more likely to bring her friends around. Second, her friends will be more likely to like you. And finally, your child might eventually learn that you’re not the unhip loser she thinks you are. Here’s how to avoid embarrassing your child and, in the process, make your house much more welcoming.

Turn Off the Radio

You have spent your whole life fine-tuning your tastes in music, so you might take it for granted that your musical tastes are cool. To your child, however, anything you like is the opposite of cool. Allow your child and her friends to listen to their music instead. This not only saves your child embarrassment; it also allows you a chance to hear what kind of messages are being conveyed in your child’s favourite music.

Avoid Overt Affection

When your child was a preschooler, you probably had to pry her away from you every day when you left for work. Later in childhood, however, children become embarrassed by public displays of affection.  By the time they are teenagers, even touching them may cause them to flinch. Avoid hugging, kissing or holding their hand when her friends are around. Instead, focus on showing affection by praising her, demonstrating your interest in her life and talking to her friends.

Eliminate the trappings of babyhood

You might think the stuffed animals in your child’s room are adorable and that putting his finger-paintings on the wall is an homage to his development. He, however, is more likely to see this as humiliating reminders of his embarrassing babyhood. Talk to your child about how he’d like for his room to look when friends come over.

Similarly, make sure your teenagers bed is age appropriate. Race car and princess beds might be great for preschoolers, but they can be embarrassing to older children. Good youth beds include bunk beds, captain’s beds and adult-sized beds.

Be yourself

Some parents, desperate to be cool, try to mimic the slang, habits and fashion choices of their children. It’s much better to stick with what you like. Doing otherwise makes it look like you’re trying too hard, and can cause rejection to sting even more.

Talk to your teenager

Perhaps the best thing about how to deal with your teenager is you can talk directly to him / her about how to avoid embarrassing him. Perhaps there are sensitive subjects he’d prefer you not discuss in front of his friends. Or maybe there’s a particular decoration in the house he finds humiliating. He might have suggestions about minor changes that could make your family and your house more welcoming to his friends as well.

Many parents are hesitant to talk directly to their teenagers, both because they don’t want to be reminded that they’re embarrassing and also because they worry it gives their child too much control. But open, honest communication is how to deal with your teenager, it is an important part of a healthy parent-child relationship. When you and your child strategize together, you’ll become closer and you might even find that your child finds you less embarrassing!

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