How to talk to your teen

How to talk to your teen

Life becomes much easier when parents and children especially teens are in good terms with each other. Limited Communication with your teenager is part of what needs to happen so that he or she can eventually learn how to become independent grownups. But how do we talk with these seemingly unapproachable aliens — the kids we used to know and love? And harder yet, how do we get them to respond?

Be a good listener. If your teen is willing to share something — anything — accept it for the precious and rare moment it is. Learn to listen and not judge, this will get you and your teen much closer and will give him/her the feeling that anything can be shared with you.

Respect his/her privacy. If he/she sees that you understand his/her need for private phone calls and a closed bedroom door, he/she may be more willing to try sharing some of his/her inner world with you.

Accept all of his/her feelings, as long as they are respectfully conveyed.

Apologize when you are wrong. When you speak to them keep your comments brief. Schedule time to talk about unappealing topics, such as homework — don’t catch them on the fly. Focus on what they’ve got right, before offering constructive criticism.

Avoid lecturing, nagging and guilt trips. At their age, teens are after the feeling that they have actually grown up and that they are a bit closer to being totally independent. Lecturing them will only widen the gap between you and won’t get them to listen.

Always keep a secret.Don’t reveal to others the confidences they have shared with you. They may not risk offering you their intimate thoughts again for some time to come.