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As challenging as parenting teenagers can be, this period is also a time when parents have the opportunity to build stronger relationships with their teens. As you continue your teen’s journey towards adulthood, you’ll want to ensure they have the best support system. The more you understand the unique changes your teen is experiencing right now, the more equipped you will be to help them through any potential struggles they may face down the road. While most teenagers experience some turbulent transition around this age, it’s up to you as a parent to help them navigate these tricky waters as smoothly and safely as possible. Here are some tips on how you can help your teen during this challenging period.

Help your teen find a safe place to process their feelings.

Teenagers experience a great deal of change and upheaval and many can go through challenging periods. This can lead to intense feelings of uncertainty, confusion, stress, and sadness. While it’s important to acknowledge and validate your teen’s feelings, you also need to help them find a safe place to process these emotions. Help your teen find a few different outlets to process their feelings, such as talking to a parent or trusted adult, journaling, or getting involved in a creative endeavor.

Don’t hesitate to seek professional help if you think it’s needed.

If your teen’s struggle extends beyond a few months, it may signify that they need extra support. Parents often dismiss their teen’s struggles as typical growing pains, but it’s important to remember that every teen is different. There are many reasons a teen may experience a challenging period, and not all are obvious. Many different types of professionals can help you, and your teen navigate this difficult time. If your teen is experiencing significant mental health issues, it may be a good idea to seek help from a psychologist or therapist. Suppose your teen is struggling with substance abuse or a substance use disorder. In that case, it’s essential to seek help from a substance abuse treatment center or enroll them in Alpine Academy Utah so they can continue their education. 

laughing asian mother and daughter preparing pasta in kitchen
Photo by Katerina Holmes on Pexels.com

Stay involved, and don’t stop checking in with your teen.

When your teenager is going through a challenging period, you may want to pull back, avoid confrontation, and let them work things out independently. While it may seem like the logical course of action, pulling away from your teen during this time can do more harm than good. While you don’t want to pry or cross any boundaries, you still want to maintain a certain level of involvement in your teen’s life. You don’t want to hover, but you do want to stay in touch with what’s going on in your teen’s world. Maintaining a certain level of communication with your teen, even if they’re not sharing much with you, is essential. You don’t want to force them to talk, but you do want to create an open and inviting environment where they can talk if they’re going to. 

Celebrate your teen’s successes and recognize their potential.

We know it sounds cliché, but this is the best way to support your teen during this challenging period. Make it a point to celebrate your teen’s successes and recognize their potential, even if they feel like they’re falling short of their own expectations. As challenging as this period is, it’s also a time when your teenager is likely to discover their strengths and passions. Your teenager is going to make mistakes, and they’re going to fall short of their own expectations. When this happens, don’t focus on the one thing they didn’t achieve; instead, focus on the many things they did achieve. 

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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