Welcome back to Hart Of Blogging!
Today is a bit of a change in pace. I am so happy to be partnering with Karen from The Mommy Lady for today’s post! Karen has written the following post for me to share with y’all and I have written one that she has shared on her blog. I hope you will visit her blog and browse around a bit.
Without further ado, here is
How To Parent A Teenager by Karen @TheMommyLady85
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How To Parent A Teenager!
I remember when I fell pregnant with my eldest child, I was just 18 years old. My mother said to me “Karen, you don’t know how difficult this is going to be.” What a load of rubbish! Changing a nappy and giving a bottle, that’s the easiest thing in the world, isn’t it! And while I am a huge lover of newborns and I enjoy that phase very much, it was hard, it was tiring but the worst was yet to come.
When my eldest was 13 months old I gave birth to my second and when she was 2 I had my third. Three children all under four years old! Now I knew what mom was talking about, this was manic! But I wouldn’t have changed it for the world.
When the eldest was 11 I had my fourth, and final child and the hard work started all over again.
But then the teenage years hit! I now have one who is 14 and one who is weeks away from 13 and believe me, these are the most trying times of parenthood. No longer are you able to use the naughty step or take away a favourite toy as a sanction. No longer does your child wish to spend countless hours with you baking cakes, reading books or watching Mr. Tumble. My Goodness people, cherish those times because once they are gone, they are gone.
I am now ‘an embarrassment’ and not cool enough to be seen out with, unless of course I’m buying a McDonald’s or paying for some new trainers. I actually remember feeling like this about my own parents and having a total disregard to how it would make them feel, well now I know!
Discipline doesn’t come easy either because they are ALWAYS right, you are ALWAYS out to get them and you JUST. DON’T. UNDERSTAND!!!
So, I thought that I would share with you some of the best ways that I have found to ‘rear’ a teenage human. They don’t always work but you can but try!
They think completely differently to us, try to get into their frame of mind before approaching a topic that you know they won’t want to talk about. If you can somehow get back into that hormonal mindset, you stand a much better chance of getting through.
Off the back of that, try to understand the ways of the teenage world, some of it seems like madness to me, the way they talk, the things they take interest in etc. but it pays to show some interest in what they’re up to. One thing I like to do is play the YouTube game. My teen will choose a song that we will listen to and then I will choose one. We have to listen and pay attention to each other’s music and give an honest opinion. It’s actually quite entertaining.
Be a confidant! I can’t stress this enough. Be the person that your teen can confide in, as difficult as some subjects may be, sex, drugs, bullying, you know the kinds of things I’m talking about, but put aside your awkwardness, don’t judge and let them talk to you. This way you’re always going to know what they’re up to and they’re more likely to come to you first before making any rash decisions about life. My eldest had been smoking from age 12! Shocking I know but when I found out, I let her talk, let her explain to me why and how it had started. As a smoker myself, I explained the ways that it was bad and encouraged her to quit before it was too late. She didn’t as most teens will do the complete opposite and I made it expressly clear that she was never to smoke on our property and that I would never supply any smoking items. But knowing that I knew and didn’t just fly off the handle had made me more approachable to her and she will now talk to me about a variety of taboo subjects. As do my other children. I am their mother, I don’t ever want them to feel scared or ashamed to confide in me. I will always give them the best guidance that I can and try to help them make the right choices. If they fail then I will be there to pick up the pieces, dust them off and help them try again.
Discipline. This still needs to be addressed with teens but in a different way to younger children. They have their own minds, opinions and are definitely stubborn. But they are still children and still need to be taught right from wrong. I find that a gentler approach works better. If you rear up and start shouting, you’re only going to get it back and then all you’re left with is a shouting match. If one of my teens is doing something that they shouldn’t be, I will give them a clear warning that if it continues then this will be the consequence (usually a confiscated mobile phone, you have no idea how quickly that threat can induce better behaviour) When it doesn’t work, I will give a final warning, and if I need to then I will follow through. ALWAYS follow through. Just like younger children, they will learn that empty threats mean that they can get away with whatever. You will find that a teen will slam doors and shout once they realize they are grounded or have no internet and I usually find that telling them that if they continue their tantrum, the punishment will last an extra day, works.
Sometimes though, the above will fail and you will end up thinking you’re back in the terrible twos. Again, screaming and shouting won’t get you very far. I usually ask them to go into their rooms until they have calmed down, escort them yourself if you really need to. Once this is achieved you can then talk to them as an equal and explain why what has happened, has happened. Many times they may open up and talk to you, sometimes they will just accept what you have said but it is always better to wait for things to cool down before having that final discussion.
Spending time with your teen may prove difficult, they want to be out with their friends or glued to social media but it is still important to try to spend one on one time with them. I actually find one of the best ways is to include them in the cooking of the evening meal. Ask them to help, and while you’re cooking, you can chat. Another good way is to go out for a meal, just the child and you. Movie night is always great and I find IMDB to be a brilliant tool, as my teens like horror movies and don’t scare easily they are more geared towards watching them. However, many of these movies contain sexual scenes that I am not comfortable with them watching, or sometimes excessive drug use, which again I do not want them exposed to, where I can help it. IMDB gives an extensive parents guide on most movies so you can make a decision on whether it is suitable for your child to watch. We actually have a laugh at this whilst choosing a movie, I am clicking away on my phone checking the guide and if I say ‘No, not that one’ we always have a giggle at how we just want a good scare.
I hope that these little insights will be of use to you and your family. I would like to take the time to thank Rachel for allowing me to guest on her blog, it is a real privilege to be able to share some of my thoughts with a new set of readers and I have thoroughly enjoyed putting this post together.
Have an excellent day and thank you for reading!
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Again, I would like to thank Karen for taking the time to write this post for me to share with y’all. This is my very first time hosting a guest blogger and I hope to partner with Karen again in the future. Be sure to go give her blog some love!
Lots of Love,