In a world that’s increasingly more violent and chaotic, there is an increasing number of parents losing the trust of their teens and losing trust in their teens as well. As with any other relationship, the trust between a child and his parents is one that has to be earned.
The news is full of stories about teens that are on drugs, that have been checked in as an outpatient in Seattle to drug abuse clinics and even news of children who have died due to some type of drug addiction. Luckily, all is not lost when it comes to building the trust between you and your teenage son or daughter. It’s going to take work and determination, but it can be done with a few helpful tips.
How Can You Build Trust with Teens?
There are many common mistakes that most parents make when it comes to raising a teenager. One day, they are these cute babies that hang on your every word and the next they are what they consider to be grown and seem to know it all.
From belittling your child’s ideas to lecturing them constantly and from expecting only the worst from your son to trying to solve their problems for them, these are common mistakes that need to be avoided if you want to build the trust between you.
Strict Isn’t Always a Bad Thing
In a world where parents seem to want to be their children’s best friends instead of being a parent, you need to realize that being strict isn’t always a bad thing. Though it may not seem like it, your child craves a little tough love and in fact, needs it in order to grow into the responsible man or woman you one day hope they’ll become.
Having a curfew, insisting on meeting their friends, and laying down the law about being home for dinner with the family every night are little things that will go a long way towards building a bond. You’re the parent and they need to be able to rely on that, even if they protest growing up in a strict environment.
Talk, but Also be Willing to Listen
When you know what is right for your teen, sometimes it’s hard to not lecture. It’s hard to sit and listen to their reasoning and their ideas, when you have the life experience to prove them wrong. However, you need to be willing to listen, and really listen to what your teen is trying to tell you.
It may seem frustrating because teens are bad about answering with one-word sentences, shrugs, or they simply stonewall you and refuse to answer at all. Don’t give up, keep talking, even if it is a one-sided conversation. The point is to let them know you care and that you’re there when they’re ready to talk. Once they realize that, they’ll begin to come around.
These are just a few of the ways that you can build the trust between you and your teen. Being a teenager is hard on your child, and likewise, there are no blueprints that come with raising a teenager. With a little work and dedication, however, you will both make it through the teenage years together.