Dealing with teenagers (parenting tips)

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Dealing with teenagers

Lots of parents have troubles dealing with their children in the teenage phase because of their lack of knowledge about psychology.

A teenager is usually rebellious and stubborn because he is in constant search of his identity. Not knowing who he is or what his role in life will be he starts to join different groups and follow different trends in attempt to discover his true self.

At one time he might put on weird clothes, at another time he might spray his hair and at a third time he might listen to weird music. With each one of these changes he tries to find an identity or a group to belong to.

For a parent to properly deal with a teenager he must be aware that all of these phases are quite normal and that the teen must be left on his own in order to develop his identity properly unless he engages in a dangerous Beauvoir.

Never Try to control the teenager else he will resist

Searching for an identity is a normal stage of growth. As a parent you should not interfere with what the teen is doing as long as it is not dangerous.

Interfering with the teen's life by telling him that he should not wear this or that he should not act in a certain way might affect the development of his personality and might result in psychological disorders when he becomes an adult.

Many parents complain about their stubborn teens without realizing that being stubborn can just be a defense mechanism the teen is using to prevent the over controlling parent from controlling him. (see Dealing with stubborn teens)

Never be over protective

Being over protective will result in one of two things, either the teen will do bad things behind your back or he will either become an insecure adult who fears to take risks or to take on any new challenges.

Children who are over protected usually fail to develop the life skills they need and so grow up lacking self esteem. For more information read (how Over protection can affect teen's personality).

Be Authoritative not authoritarian

Teens can sometimes try to find their identities by trying to act on their own. some teen may try to disobey all rules that the parent sets just to be feel that they have their own personality.

In such a case the parent must be Authoritative not authoritarian. Authoritative parents are democratic, they set rules but are flexible enough to discuss them and that's why they usually raise healthy children. Authoritarian parents on the other hand ruin the self esteem of their children and prevent them from developing proper self regulation. (for more information read How parents affect child development)

Be his friend

The teen’s mind is being constantly bombarded by programming that comes from external sources like the media, peer pressure and the society. Each of these sources tries to affect the teen in a different way.

If as a parent you didn’t manage to become his friend so that you can influence him more than these external sources then he might follow any of them and forget about your rules. (see subconscious mind programming)

Final words to parents

Its not a problem to see your teen following the latest fashion, doing weird haircuts or changing his life style everyday. As long as he doesn’t harm himself allow him to do what he wants and make sure that you have a supervisory role.

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Want to know more?

How parenting affects child's personality

Parenting mistakes parents make

What is the self concept?

How to find my true self?

How to raise emotionally healthy children?

My child has intense fear of failure

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