Teenage is one of the most severe phases of our lives. The age between 13 and 19 is the time of puberty, periods, “serious relationships” and what not. It’s the time of middle and high schools, where most of the kids get bullied badly – Real bad! Teenage is also the time of endless expectations from parents where they point out how good that neighbour’s daughter or son is and why we don’t try hard enough to be like them. To summarize it all, the period of teen years has loads of ups and downs, but if dealt with properly, it can turn out to be one hell of a ride.
• Communication is probably one of the best ways to bond with your teen. Understand when your teen needs you. Talk to them regularly. Ask them about their day. Always incorporate a friendly tone in the conversation. Communication should never be one sided. Speak to them about your experiences of the day. Automatically, your child will become freer with you.
• Instead of reprimanding, try to support them during break-ups, bad school reports and bitter quarrels with friends. After they have stabilized a bit, let them know your views on the situation and how you would have dealt with it.
• Never keep on lecturing your teenager. Advisers are always welcome, but you should never stick to them because everyone needs space. Learn to respect their privacy. It’s understandable if you love them and are concerned – but that’s no reason to pounce on them every time they make a small mistake. Sometimes, caring about someone is all about letting them go.
• Accept them as they are. Teenage is the time when your kids suffer from immense insecurities. If your teen shows an inclination towards a particular field, you should support and encourage them. If they see you believing in them, it will boost their confidence, and they will start having faith in themselves.
• A healthy relationship between you and your spouse or any other member of your family is vital. Teenage is a crucial time because your child gradually transcends into adulthood. If they see you cursing someone all the time, it can turn them into depressed individuals as they grow up.
• Taking vacations that include your teen and your entire family is equally important to bond with them. Holidays give you plenty of time for communication; spending time doing something that both of you or the whole family loves. It allows you to find out unknown facts about your teen child which you never had any idea about.
• If your child is an introvert, try to bond with them over things that they like doing. For example, you can bond over video games, piano, violin or dance lessons, yoga sessions, books, movies, food. It’s all about setting aside some quality time for your kids.
• Engage them in family activities like cooking dinner, making comfort food, doing laundry and holding activities like talking sessions where everyone in the family talks about their experiences of the day. That way, your child is included as a part of the household and becomes more comfortable around you.
Teenage is a hard time for everyone. But don’t worry, because even Harry Potter couldn’t be the ideal dad. But, it is all about improving. And who can help, if not the internet?