A parenting expert has given her advice on how to deal with quirky teenagers.
Anita Brown, 49, from Essex, wrote & # 39; The Worst Nightmares from A Parent – And how to deal with it & # 39; after her own experience with raising a 17-year-old daughter who once wished her mother dead.
The author explained that teenage years are full of conflicts and fear of parents.
& # 39; Parents struggle to balance rules and discipline with a desire to protect their child from harm, & # 39; she said. & # 39; We gradually loosen the aprons and hope that our child has become an adult who is able to find their way in an often turbulent world.
& # 39; Walking with that cord is often a challenge for even the most talented parents, and we often make mistakes when our teenager is an unwilling participant in the process. & # 39;
The writer has spoken exclusively with FEMAIL and has advised what parents can do to achieve more cooperation – and less slamming doors.
Anita Brown, age 49, from Essex, who has written a book that guides parents of teenagers with their fingers on the self-destruction button, has unveiled her top tips on how to deal with unruly teenagers. Image, stock image
1. Consider your own teenage tests and trials
The first thing I had to remember is how it felt to be a teenager. It is one of the most confusing times in your life. Your hormones are everywhere.
One moment you feel good and the other you are sobbing in your pillow, or you wriggle your books against the wall in anger. Then add the intense fear to fit in, because suddenly your body gets a life of its own.
Author Anita Brown, 49, from Essex, in the photo, shares her tips from top parent
It almost seems like it was on a mission to embarrass you before your friends, with its unpredictable physical outbursts.
Your world has changed. You go from taking no care in the world to taking responsibility, but ironically you have the feeling that you have less control.
You have to make decisions about the future, something you never really thought about, except when your best friend came for tea. And oh my god the pressure of parents, teachers and friends.
It makes you want to hide under your duvet until everything is back to normal, doesn't it? This is the reality of your teen every day. So first a little compassion.
2. Decide a & # 39; safe word & # 39;
There will probably come a time when even a well-behaved teenager is in a situation where they are at risk of being damaged.
Most teenagers will feel out of their depth when they deal with it themselves and will stick with it because they have no other option.
They do not want to call their parents because of fear of the consequences and to explain what is happening. That is why it is a good idea in advance to agree on a safe word or sentence.
Your teenager can send a text to that word or phrase to let you know that they are currently in trouble.
It can be as simple as "I forgot to feed the cat" if you don't have a cat.
When you receive that message, call your teenager immediately and give them an excuse to leave the situation they are in, so their supervisors are not warned.
It could be something like: "Your father was rushed to the hospital and I have to take you to him now, so I'll pick you up in five minutes".
Having a safe word in place that means that no discussion is just direct action gives you both peace of mind.
3. Accept that your teenager has a life
The following is to accept that your teenager has a life. When we bring a baby into the world, the baby becomes an extension of the parents.
We do not ask the baby if he is free to go to the supermarket. We just pick them up, hang them in the car seat and we leave.
Anita & # 39; s first book & # 39; When the World Kicks You in the Teeth – How to Get Back Up again & # 39; and second (above) are available on Amazon
As your child grows, we will continue to do the same. Even when we drop them off at school, we don't think they are planning a vacation with their school friends in the playground. Because the reality is that they don't.
We organize everything from performance dates and appointments to public holidays. When they touch those teenage years that change, they suddenly have a life. They plan things with several people.
Just because you want them to tidy up their room, empty the trash, or help with the dishes does not mean that they are free to do that now.
They may be in their room as if they were not doing anything at all, but are they real?
Are they comforting a friend online, are they coming up with the words for the next number one rap song or are they hanging out with friends as they storm a virtual castle?
Give them the chance to add your request to their schedule, of course within reasonable limits.
Choose your moments and try to compromise when they want something from you. "I will iron your football shirt now if you can bring those plates down from your room." Respect is two-way traffic.
4. Avoid control tactics and set limits
Every parent must know how to set their own strong limits. Parents naturally want to help and support their child as much as possible, but the danger is when they or you try to control actions through the use of control tactics.
Now these can range from secret manipulation, which can be things like nasty hateful remarks to physical violence.
Every action is designed to give the offender a superior feeling. These tactics only work if you allow them.
Both you and your child must take care of your own physical, mental and emotional health.
Talk to a therapist if you find it particularly difficult. They will help you disassemble stubborn power games and offer tools for better handling.
5. Be open and honest so that they learn the necessary skills
The teenage years are so short when an adult looks at it, but for a teenager it seems to go on forever.
So it's a good idea to meet in the middle. Make time to discuss the "plan" that all parents have but that they never really tell their children.
The plan is largely unconscious, but it is based on transferring skills and knowledge to your child until they have everything to be a fully functional adult. The faster they learn these skills, the more freedom they have to learn more advanced skills.
Anita gave advice to other parents and said: & # 39; If your teen wants to talk, sit down at the table, turn off the TV and turn off your phone. Give them eye contact and listen carefully & # 39;
Are we saying this to our children? No, so they believe these limitations will last forever.
My mother started working at the age of fifteen and was a fully functional adult for all purposes, but times have changed and priorities are now different.
Is that a mistake in today's society where children stay dependent for years longer than they should?
Explain the plan to your child and be honest that sometimes negotiation is needed to reach a mutually acceptable decision.
So the faster they learn to express their thoughts and feelings in a conversation instead of shouting, the better the process will be for them. If your teenager wants to do something that you are not happy with, be honest, be scared or worried.
Explain which pieces worry you the most and why. Ask your teenager for help in making a compromise.
6. Listen to show that you are interested
The last point here is to really learn to listen. In this fast paced world we are bombarded by constant drainage of our attention.
We become masters in watching TV, posting on Facebook, cooking food and talking to our children in one go. But are we really listening with all our attention or are we just paying lip service?
If your teen wants to talk, sit down at the table, turn off the TV, and turn off your phone.
Give them eye contact and listen carefully. Don't just interrupt listening. Show them that you are interested in what they say, even if it is not something you would necessarily have.
It's very important for your teenager, so try to do your best. Take this opportunity of targeted communication to tell your teenager that you love them.
Parents often say that my teenager will not listen to me. If you don't show them how to listen when they talk to you, why would they listen to you when you talk to them?
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