Sometimes it’s all you can do to keep up with life. To keep up with your teen can seem daunting.
Your relationship with your teen can make or break your teen’s experience and relationships with peers, friends, school, and family. Research shows that connection with family is the #1 preventive factor in substance abuse, addiction, pregnancy, and school failure throughout the teen years.
Connection means that when faced with a dilemma or decision, your teen will first think what would my parents say? instead of what would my friends say? Connection does not guarantee smart decision-making—your teen is in the developmental risk taking years—but it puts you first and foremost in your teen’s mind. If your teen fears punishment, thinks you will not understand, knows she can’t talk to you, she will turn to her friends for the support and understanding she needs.
Here are 10 ways to keep up and keep connected:
1. Understand development — Your teen reverts to the egocentricity you haven’t seen since toddlerhood. Everything is about him. He is evolutionarily programmed to take risks