The teenage years are a time of many changes for your teenage children. There are a myriad of physical and emotional changes, as well as the changing social groups your teenage child interacts with.
Often at this age, teenagers are invited to movies, parties, and may experience bullying and peer pressure. This age is such, that teens want to make independent choices, and they want to navigate life on their terms wherever possible. If they don’t receive the right guidance, teenagers may fall into serious trouble or develop dangerous habits. This reinforces the role of the parents in the teenagers’ life. Parents must give their teen boundaries and firm limits as to what is and what isn’t allowed in their household.
Establish a healthy relationship
Always have good communication between yourself as a parent and your teenager. There is so much, at this age that children want to explore and discuss, what better place to do so than the in the safety of their family, with their parents? Building healthy relationships takes time and effort and is done over a lifetime. Successful parenting is built on solid foundations and mutual respect between the parent and child or teen.
In comfortable relationships matters can easily be discussed and concerns can be addressed in a healthy manner. Parents can counsel, advise and guide, without being judgmental. It should be a safe place for the teen to let their views be known.
Teach teens to set their own limits
Have your teen understand your values and norms, then model their own around those. Smoking could be an issue where your teen has set clear boundaries. If a friend invites them to join in, while they are smoking, the teen could clearly state cigarettes are beyond the limit and they would be prepared to walk away if their friend continually invites them. Thus, peer pressure will not affect them as greatly.
Teach teens to talk to trustworthy peers and adults
When they face an issue advise your teens to consult sensible peers or trusted adults who can guide them in decision making in areas they aren’t sure of. They can discuss problems with you, or trustworthy peers and decide on the actions they need to take. Over time, they need to trust their own decisions and be pragmatic in coming to make them.
Some moments in life can bring their challenges, and decision making can be stressful. Give your teen coping strategies to handle the stresses and strains that come with being an adult.
Encourage your teens to have confident body language
Often if teenagers are looking down and slouching, or avoiding the gaze of their peers, while saying no to an unsuitable situation, this can be seen as a weakness and uncertainty in your teen. Teach your teenager to be assertive, head up and back straight, ready to look their peer in the eye. Strong body language shows they are certain of their decision and proud of their own judgement, teens can be seen to be increasing confidence with body language through applying basic tactics.
Encourage your teen to trust in themselves
Once your teen becomes confident in decision making, they can rely on themselves to make the best judgements and be certain they can handle most situations by establishing their own healthy boundaries. With time, and experience they will see the benefits of discussing issues with trusted peers elders and parents, as well. Skills which will prepare them to make suitable decisions throughout their adult lives.
Teens can ‘blame their parents’
At times when teens run out of explanations of why they don’t want to participate in a particular activity they can just state that their parents don’t approve of certain things and the norms of their family don’t include certain activities. It’s alright for teenagers to explain that they don’t want to participate in certain things as their parents wouldn’t approve. No further explanation is needed.
These tips can assist a parent and guardian on how to help teens under their care to deal with the challenges of growing up. When they are equipped with such teachings, peer pressure will be no match against them.