I wanted to share some advice for parents to show their teens that they are loved … no matter what, because the teenage years are hard ones to navigate. Most parents can remember what it was like to be a teenager. But looking back on a past situation with a life full of experience and education in the school of hard knocks is totally different than actually being a teenager. Parents can recall the experience, but can never again look on it with the ignorance or naivete of a teen.
These years are tough on both parents and teenagers. Parenting a teenage boy or teenage girl can be tough. For teens, so much is going on with hormones, school, and peer pressure, just to name a few of the challenging issues facing them today. For parents, it’s hard to find the time to follow a pattern of good parenting because of all the other things going on in life. All of these challenges aside, there remains one thing that is absolutely essential – love.
Good Parenting Means Being Positive and Encouraging
As parents, it’s helpful to know that positive attention is going to go a lot further than negative attention. The world in which a teen lives is already fraught with challenges, unknown dangers, and stresses. Why would anyone give parenting advice that would involve adding more negative pressure onto a teenager? Good parenting means bringing positive reinforcement when appropriate and encouraging, constructive advice to unacceptable behavior.
Teenagers need to know that whatever happens, their parents are going to be there. They are SAFE with us and they can TRUST us to hear them. We will not judge them, but instead, we will help them. It’s time to be a parent who cares, a parent who loves, a parent who is willing to sacrifice whatever it takes to be there for her kids.
Loving, Caring Parents Know Going the Extra Mile is Time Well Spent
Spending time with teens is probably the easiest and most obvious way to let them know that they are indeed loved and cared for. Money and expensive gifts are not going to prove love to a child. What every child wants from the day he comes into this world is to know without a doubt, that his parents will be there for them.
Sacrificing time that would be spent on other things in order to spend more time with the family is going to pay off in major dividends, especially in the long-term. Good parenting means going the extra mile and making sure teens know they are a priority in the lives of their parents. It is really that simple. Isn’t that what anyone really wants? Teens need to know they are wanted, desired, that another person wants to spend time away from everything, and be with them.
Unconditional Love is Best Parenting Advice
To love children unconditionally is perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of good parenting. Good thing for them that when they’re young and cute, it’s a pretty simple thing to love them, doesn’t require much effort. But when they get older and start turning into these creatures that seem to be totally self-absorbed, resistant to common sense, and able to eat their own weight in food every day – well that’s another story.
Seriously, these teenage years are the years when kids need their parents most. Sadly, for more than half the teens aged 15 to 19 in this country, parents seem to have stepped away or given up entirely. According to ParentFurther.com, less than 50% of teens in their survey have clear, defined boundaries for activities, behavior, or even socialization.
Some parents have clearly thrown in the towel on trying to keep their teens on track. But unconditional love demands that good parenting means giving more than the average parent. Good parenting means showing, proving that teens are loved no matter what they do, no matter what mistakes they make.
Consequences and discipline are integral parts of this program of unconditional love because loving parents do not let kids go any way they think is right. Loving parents guide, console, encourage and allow consequences to be realized so that teens may grow into responsible, loving adults.