Teens face an incredibly complex world and are tasked with learning how to navigate it successfully. In this long and important phase of life they learn to understand all the pieces that make them what they are, shape their identity, learn what it takes to become independent.
Understanding typical adolescent behaviorand the biological, emotional and cognitive changes they experience is the first step in facilitating the management of the parent-child relationship during adolescence .
There are many changes that have taken place during these years, but there are three aspects that we consider central to addressing the transformation of the relationship between parents and adolescent children .
TEENAGE CHILDREN, 3 TIPS FOR PARENTS
1) DON’T BLAME THEIR EMOTIONALITY
As a child approaches adolescence , his emotions become more intense. How do we know? It’s not just for the slamming doors and pouting at the table.
One study has shown that children, adolescents, and adults respond very differently when shown the image of an emotionally expressive or neutral face. They found more intense emotional responses among adolescents and a relatively mild response among both children and adults. This means that teenagers feel and perceive much more stronglyemotions. They are also more likely to see them in other people, even if there aren’t any. When you show a neutral face to a teenager, their amygdala activates: they think the person is having a negative rather than neutral emotional response.
The downside to this increased emotionality is that teenagers can become more easily irritable , angry and moody. These intense subcortical influences may seem to come out of nowhere. If an adult scolds the teenager just for being very emotional, it will push him away.
2) DON’T ESCAPE CONFLICT, MANAGE IT
Children have a great need for relationships with adults , and therefore also for conflict. In adolescence there seems to be the urge to do what one could not do. Transgression becomes an essential element in the growth path that leads children to confront their own responsibilities, with freedom, and therefore with the consequences of their actions. In this the role of parents is fundamental. Relationships with adults characterized only by collaboration, without any push for rebellion or conflict, do not contain developmental factors. It is essential for children to experience the authority of the adult, they must be rigorous in setting precise limits. Only in this way will we give him the opportunity to truly transgress and understand any errors.
A teenage child is very likely to get angry with a parent , their ideas and advice, and there will be times when they think it’s unfair. All right. In fact, it’s really good for a child to challenge parents’ perspectives and use how they respond to guide his new learning. How they deal with it will be learned in large part from how parents also handle conflicts.
It is good to remember that with every attempt to resolve the fight, successful or not, the brain of one’s child grows and develops. This is also a way of learning to be in the world. Adolescence won’t last forever, the most “stormy” period is usually at the beginning of this phase and subsides around 17 or 18 years. Hold on!
3) LEAVE SPACE
An important component of adolescence is not only “learning who you are” (ie your identity), but also learning to fit into society. Teens’ basic social focus shifts from family to friends. Although parents are still influential, peers begin to exert a greater grip on the way people think and behave. but it is an important step to take during this time. Teens need to spend time with other people their age to develop social skills and feel a sense of belonging. Spending time with each other helps teens learn how to interactand form positive connections with other people, especially those who might be very different from them.