Transitioning from the parents of a cute, loveable little one to a teenager can be a difficult one. It might seem like yesterday that your kid was hugging you and wanting to play with toys, but suddenly, they turn into an aggravated, stressed-out mess who doesn’t want anything to do with you.
It’s important to remember when dealing with teens that the hormones coursing through their bodies can have a major effect on their behavoir and attitude, which can affect how they act when they’re around you. That doesn’t mean they don’t love you any less, but they now have unique needs and might start to act out at times.
As a parent, all this change can be frightening and make you worry about your child’s future. Don’t worry- you’re not the first parent to face these issues, and you definitely won’t be the last. Here are some of the main problems most parents face as their kids become teenagers and how you can deal with them proactively so they don’t become lasting issues.
Being Lied To
Teenagers often tell little white lies, particularly when they want to get away with something they know they shouldn’t have done. However, in some extreme cases, teens can become regular liars who bend the truth more often than they should. This can be scary for parents, as you don’t want them to grow into adults who won’t respect the truth. Thankfully, the issue is common, and there are many ways to deal with teens who lie compulsively and help them to understand the benefits of being truthful.
On par with being lied to is being ignored completely. Many teens will ignore their parents as an act of defiance or because they simply don’t like what they’re being told. This can make it harder for you to discipline your child and help them to do the things they need to if they want to succeed, in both schools and outside of it. When dealing with a teenager who’s ignoring you, it’s important that you don’t get frustrated but instead develop a system of clear, calm communication. Make them acknowledge what you say, and if they don’t do it, ask them why. Try to find ways to motivate them and make them understand the importance of what you’re saying. If you don’t, they’ll enjoy defying you just for fun.
Struggling To Wrench Them Away From Screens
We’ve all been there: even if your kids aren’t teens yet, you’ll know how tough it can be to get them away from their screens and engaged in the real world. From tablet computers to smartphones, most children have some form of electronic device these days, and they’re usually in love with it. Excessive screen time can be bad for your teen’s eyes and general development, so you should try to set limits for their screen time. A useful approach is to try and find ways to tempt them away from their screens by giving them fun alternatives, such as great books, cooking delicious meals, and participating in other activities that don’t involve screens. You can then reduce the strain they put on their eyes and help them to build healthy habits for the future.
Changing Eating Habits
As kids grow and their hormones rage, they often develop bigger appetites in their teenage years, making it hard for you to keep your pantry stocked with enough treats to keep them happy. Also, they can sometimes gain excess weight as they eat more than they need to grow in a healthy way. To keep your costs down and ensure that your child stays healthy, it’s important that you set boundaries with them on what they can and can’t eat and talk to them about how to manage their hunger correctly. Additionally, it would help if you tried to provide as many healthy alternatives to processed snacks as possible, so they can avoid gaining too much weight and jeopardizing their general health. Talk to your child about their eating habits and try to create structure in their day through regular mealtimes to cut down on the snacks they eat.
Parenting Teenagers: A Brief Summary
If you learn one thing from this article, let it be this: you’re not alone. Almost every parent faces struggles and challenges as their kids turn from sweet little ones to terrible teens- where do you think that expression came from?! The key is to be patient and try not to get too stressed out by your teen’s behavior. Remember, teens can be under a lot of pressure themselves, including facing bullying by their peers, wondering how to cope with an uncertain future, and more. So, you need to create and maintain clear lines of communication with them so that you can reduce the chances that your child’s teenage issues will become long-term problems that haunt them into adulthood.