It’s not easy to reach out teens these days. There seem to be many distractions and little time. Not to mention, our teens think adults are from another planet. So what can we do to make your life easier? Nothing! But, we can empower you to jump in there and start talking to your teen. Our first tip, make the first move. Put yourself out there and let your teen know you are interested in understanding their world. This doesn’t have to be awkward, just try and meet them on their level. One effective way to carve out time for you and your teen to talk is by creating time in your week, preferably everyday, but at least twice a week that you have family time. This can be as simple as dinner together or game night/activity night. Having fun with your teen is the best way to get them to open up. You never know how much this means to them.
Secondly, tell them more about you. When parents let their guard down and open up to their teens, it creates an atmosphere of sharing. What were your interests in high school? What was life like for you? What is your favorite thing about life? Lastly, tell them how you feel. I know teens roll their eyes a lot, and tend to moan and groan when adults talk, but even when they roll their eyes, their ears are still working. Reminding your teen that you love them and letting them know you are concerned about their well being is reassuring. By spending more time with you, your teen will begin to understand your values and standards as a parent. These are just a few ways to engage your teen to open up, do you have any suggestions? Comments?