When your affectionate child becomes a strong-willed tween who suddenly morphs into a sullen teenager, it’s easy to feel like a language barrier has sprung up between you and the teenager you’ve raised from infancy. Innocent questions can quickly degenerate into shouting matches and emotional scenes, leaving teens upset and parents befuddled. With these 30 blog entries, you can begin to explore concepts that may facilitate more productive conversation between you and your teen. With a bit of dedication and plenty of practice, you’ll be speaking your teen’s language before you know it.
Showing Respect to Get Respect
One common complaint of parents seeking family counseling or help with a troubled teen is a lack of respect shown by that teenager. What many don’t realize is that in order to receive respect from a teenager, you have to offer it in return. Rather than angrily demanding unquestioning respect from your teen without doing anything to inspire it, look to these five blog entries for some advice on how to give your teen what you’re asking for in return.
- How to Show Respect to Your Teenagers
- Kids and Teens – Four Ways to Show Your Kid Respect
- Treat Your Teen with Respect
- 10 Tips for Respecting Your Teen’s Privacy
- Ethics & Civility: Respecting Your Teen’s Opinions
Creating a “No-Judgment” Zone
In order to facilitate productive and honest conversation with your teen, you’ll need to make a point of encouraging them to talk without fear of judgment. Letting your teen know that they won’t be subjected to harsh judgments or punishments for sharing their thoughts and opinions or asking for advice is essential. Without the trust that her mistakes won’t be held against her, your teen will almost certainly choose not to come to you for help or guidance. Creating a judgment-free policy when it comes to talking to your teenager isn’t always easy, but these five blog entries are great places to start.
- The No-Judgment Zone for Parents: How to Navigate Holistic Parenting
- Practicing Non-Judgment
- The Foundation of Love: Releasing Judgments and Expectations
- Trying Out “Nonviolent Communication” With Kids: An Experiment
- The Heart of Parenting: Nonviolent Communication in Action
Keeping a Lid on Your Temper
It’s easy to fly into a rage when you feel like your teen is deliberately pushing your buttons, but it’s ultimately pointless to do so. Not only will it serve no productive purpose, but it can also make your teenager more hesitant to talk to you or to approach every conversation with hostility because that’s what she expects to encounter from you. Managing your temper in the face of a teenager’s maelstrom of emotions isn’t a trick you’ll master overnight, but the advice of these five bloggers can help you take the first step in that direction.
- Losing Your Temper: Why Parents Blow It and How To Recover
- Temper, Temper: Keeping Your Cool When Kids Push Your Buttons
- Six Questions To Help You Keep Your Cool — Instead of Losing Your Temper.
- When You Feel Your Temper Rising
- 5 Simple Ways to Control Your Temper
Learning to Listen
Part of learning how to speak to your teenager is learning how to listen to him. Just like an adult, your teen is likely to shut down when he feels that he’s not being heard, exchanging his efforts at a constructive conversation for sullenness and insults. Encouraging your teenager to talk to you can be as simple as letting him know that you’re capable of listening to what he has to say. These five blog entries offer pointers for how to practice active listening when your teen is speaking, allowing you to foster a productive dialogue rather than a one-sided shouting match.
- Tools for Listening to Your Teen
- How to Listen to your Teens
- How to Listen to Your Teen
- Listen to Your Teenager by Aletha Solter, Ph.D.
- How To Listen So Your Teen Will Talk
Make Suggestions, Not Accusations
Teens who feel like they’re being attacked by their parents or accused of things they haven’t done are far more likely to shut down completely than they are to make an effort to turn the conversation around. At this stage in your child’s life, the burden of maintaining a civil conversation rests largely on your shoulders, as she’s still learning to master the finer aspects of communication. These five blog entries discuss the importance of avoiding inflammatory “you always/you never…” statements, and help you learn to drop the accusatory tone that can lead to so much trouble.
- Parenting Together: Using Problem Solving to Set Family Rules
- User’s Manual for Parents, Part V: Advanced Concepts Using Consequences
- One Little Word That Almost Always Provokes Conflict
- 4 Tips for Getting Through to Teens
- Better Communication with Teenagers (or Anyone)
There’s more to successful communication than formulating phrases and speaking them aloud. There are so many nuances and layers to how humans communicate, many of which are instinctual. The information in these five blog entries is centered on the concept of non-verbal communication and can help you master the art of speaking without saying a word.
- 5 Nonverbal Communication Cues Parents Can Use
- Verbal and Nonverbal Communication
- Disciplining With Nonverbal Cues
- Nonverbal Signals for Communication
- Dealing With Nonverbal Cues: A Key To Mediator Effectiveness
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