Knowing how to talk to your teenager can be tricky, you know how it goes. You tell your adolescent, “No,” or why they can’t do something or have something they want and all of a sudden it is World War 3 in your home. Your teen is not satisfied with your response, and begins to debate you. In turn you start yelling, then he starts yelling and the battle has begun. It usually ends badly with both of you feeling upset, frustrated and unheard.
When I talk with adolescents in my office, the most common complaint is that their parents don’t listen to them or try to hear what they have to say. The answer is no, or you can’t do it, and conversation is over. They end up feeling mad, sad and frustrated. As the parent, you also feel upset because it was not how you wanted the conversation to go. Well, I have to tell you that your teen is right. They do need to be heard and listened to. Sometimes their points are valid and sometimes what they have to say does make sense. And sometimes yes when you say no it is no but I am here to tell you that it is so important to sit down and listen to your adolescent before making your decision.
Here are my tips so you can avoid World War III next time with your teenager:
Listen to your adolescent and really hear what he or she has to say. Don’t look at your phone, text or email while your teen is talking to you.
Tell your teen that you understand what he or she is saying and will take it into consideration.
If things get heated, both of you can take a time out and come back and discuss the issue later.
Whatever you do, do not let your teen break you down or manipulate you until you give them what they want. If he or she is being unreasonable or screaming at you, have your teen take a time out.
Talk to your teen in a calm manner, no yelling, and whenever possible try to compromise with them. If the answer is no, explain the reason.
Sometimes these talks will go well, and sometimes they won’t but if you tone down the yelling and try to hear what your teen has to say more often, your communication with your teen will improve.
If you followed these steps, and your teen is upset because you said no, it is okay. They still love you and it will pass. It is important for them to learn to accept the no’s and maybe next time the answer will be yes.[xyz-ihs snippet=”Blog-Post-CTA”]