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How to survive parenting a teen

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Being a parent and having teenagers can be challenging for all who live in the household. I remember when my daughters were in their teens I told myself many times that I just needed to survive the day. I made it through many difficult times by focusing in on making through the day; my thoughts were to take it one day at a time.

I made many mistakes parenting my teens but there were also things that I felt I did well and on a positive note. I did learn valuable lessons from the parenting mistakes I made.

Here are five parenting beliefs that I followed while raising my teen daughters:

Give Teens the Respect They Deserve

All teens will make mistakes; make sure they know it is okay to make mistakes and that their decisions whether good or bad are part of the learning experience of growing up. As a parent, it is important to guide a teen in a positive direction, but it is also important to allow the teen to make their own decisions.

Talk to Your Teen Often

Ask questions of your teen and what is going on in his/her life, staying involved in a teen's life is important to the teen's well-being. Teenagers want their parents to be interested in their lives, even when they roll their eyes at the questions.

Be consistent on rules and infractions

It is very important to set rules and boundaries for teenagers and more importantly to enforce those rules if they are broken. Although teens will invariably argue and disagree with rules that are set, kids really do want to have rules and consistency in their lives.

Be fair with discipline

Disciplining a teen is necessary at times but it is not necessary to overdo the discipline. Kids needs to know what their punishment will be if they do not follow the rules, but the punishment should be humane and something a teen can learn from.

Tell your teen every day that you love them

It is so easy when kids are little to tell them how much you love them but when kids get older they sometimes will act reluctant and embarrassed by the words, "I love you." The teen years are some of the most important years to tell a child that you love them even if you do not get the response you are hoping for. I told my daughters multiple times a day how much I loved them when they were little and as they grew through the teenage years, they are two of the most affectionate and loving girls I know and I believe part of it is because they grew up hearing "I love you" on a daily basis.

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