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Tips for raising happy and healthy teens

Tips for raising happy and healthy teens

The word “teenager” is enough to make any parent cringe. The teenage years are stereotypically categorized as a time of rebellion, parent-teen fights and distrust, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

The teen years are naturally filled with emotional ups and downs due to hormones and life changes, but with proper guidance from you, your teen will be prepared to handle these emotions and changes in a healthy way.

Tips for raising happy and healthy teens

How you parent has a huge effect on your teen’s happiness and health. You need to understand your teen and understand that your new role is to raise a mature, responsible adult. A happy teen is easier to parent than an unhappy teen. 

Educate yourself

Pick up a book or read some articles on the biology of teenagers to learn about why even the most well behaved children are going to have few outbursts and make a few mistakes during their teenage years. Knowing the science behind it can help you, and your teen, be less stressed and confused by the changes that are happening.

Another important things to do is think back to your own teenage years. What did your parents do that helped you? What did they do that hurt you? What mistakes did you make? Were they mistakes you learned from or just all around bad choices?

Let them make mistakes

Parenting teens is different than parenting younger children. You need to guide teens versus telling them what to do, which means sometimes you need to let them make mistakes. Learning through experience is more effective than learning through a lecture from you.

Pick your battles

Guiding your teen to adulthood means you should not micro-manage your teen. You are still the authority figure, but not every decision should require your approval. For example, if your teen wants to dye her hair, let her. There is no permanent damage done and you are earning your teen’s respect by allowing her to make some of her own decisions.

Be an authority figure

Some battles are still worth fighting. When it comes to subjects like underage drinking, you need to be firm with your rules. You need to talk with your teen so they understand your reasoning and understand that underage drinking is not a subject you are willing to negotiate about.

We know some of these tips may seem like they contradict each other or are difficult to follow, but parenting a teen is not a black and white thing. It is a complicated and, at times, a messy job. However, unconditional love and a clear understanding of your teen’s developmental needs will ensure that your relationship in the distant future will not be negatively impacted by the parenting decisions made today.

Photo Copyright: Konstantin Sutyagin/Shutterstock

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