Parenting babies and toddlers can be hard, but parenting teenagers brings its own set of challenges. Disciplining teenagers can be especially hard. This article gives some pointers to keep in mind when disciplining teenagers.
You may need to adjust your parenting style when your child reaches teenager stage. During the teenage years they are learning to establish their own identity and make independent decisions. They may even think that they don’t need your advice and discipline anymore and is old enough to handle life by themselves. For this reason, you may have to adapt a new way to approach your child. Try the following:
Have Grace for First Time Mistakes
All of us make mistakes every now and again. It is only natural that your child will make mistakes too. During this phase of life, your child will be faced with lots of new situations. He will most probably make mistakes in learning to deal with these new situations. Have grace with your child when he commits a first time offense. Don’t punish him for something that the consequences of the mistake punished him for already. Let the natural consequences teach your child the lesson.
Listen To Your Teenager
Nothing will communicate your love more to your teenager than listening to him without judgment. Listen without judgment even if you don’t understand all his feelings and ideas, show support by listening to him. Remember he is entering a new world and is part of a new generation.
Be a Parent, Not Buddy
If you act like your child’s best friend, he will not respect your authority. Listen to your child, do things with him, but keep your authority as parent in place. He will need you as a parent to set boundaries for him if he makes wrong decisions.
Use the Right Words
Be careful how you communicate with your teenager. Teenagers feel uncertain about their appearance and choices. Be friendly and upbeat and always try to make positive comments about the way he looks and the choices he makes.
Keep the Communication Channels Open
The worse thing that can happen to you and your teenager is that you stop talking to one another. As long as you are communicating, there is hope for your relationship.
Your child is in high-risk years. The choices he makes as a teenager will have an effect on him for the rest of his life. Give him the support he needs, try to understand his feelings and ideas and give him freedom to make his own choices.