Teenagers can be the hardest test of parenting skills

Parenting a teenager can be a very challenging process and many parents will often find that they have reached their wits end. If you find yourself in this situation then it is important that you remain very calm and handle the situation confidently. You should look back on your days as a teenager and remember that you were probably also quite difficult for your parents at times.

It is also important to remember that there is an increased pressure on teenagers today because they are constantly connected to the online world, through mobile phones and the Internet.

It is important that you don’t worry too much about dealing with your teenager, worrying never helps the situation and it can often prevent you from taking the necessary action. If you follow some of the tips listed in this article then they should ease your worries about dealing with your teenager.

Some parents often take a good cop bad cop role in the bringing up of the teenager but this is something that should be carefully avoided. While it might work in the movies, a teenager will see straight through it and they will simply use it to manipulate their parents.

The only way this can be avoided is to present a united front to your teenager, if a punishment is invoked by one parent, then both parents must make absolutely sure that they stick with the punishment.

One mistake that many parents make it’s trying to be the teenager’s friend. You should realise that at this point in their life your child does not need an extra friend, but they need a parent. If you try and take the role of a friend then things are going to become complicated when you have to discipline your teenager.

When they get into serious trouble they will find it difficult to take your punishment seriously if you have become too friendly with them. Remember to treat your teenager as your child, and not as your friend.

Establishing boundaries that can never be moved is very important. Fixed boundaries give your teenager something tangible, they know that if they go over them then they will be punished.

If, as parents, you sometimes change this boundary then the teenager will try and push things with you to see what they can get away with. The punishment for overstepping boundaries should always be enforced, and your teenager should know the exact consequences of their actions.

Similarly, it is also important that, as well as boundaries, you set regulations and rules for the home. You must make a serious effort to enforce these and make sure that there are appropriate consequences for your teenager if they violate the rules. Not only will these rules make living in your house easier, they will also make sure that you instil good values in your teenager. By learning to obey rules at a younger age, they will be able to understand the rules of the adult world when they finally get there.

Another important way you can prepare your teenager for the adult world is to allow them to make some decisions alone. There is often a fine line between discipline and allowing your teenager a certain amount of autonomy. It is important that parents realise that some amount of freedom is essential to a teenager as it will allow them to develop a confident decision-making process.

You should allow them to make important decisions about issues that you feel are not as important as others. For example, if your child wants to get an extreme haircut, let them, the hair will grow back. This teaches them a lesson about responsibility and decision-making.

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