How to Communicate With Your Teen

Many parents feel it is close to impossible to have a conversation with their teenager. Talking with your teen can be difficult, but remember how you were at that age and be understanding of the things they are going through. Try these tips to get, and keep, the conversation rolling with your teen:

As children get older they want to be treated older, which is fine, but remind them that they must act maturely to be treated so.

Keep the communication open. They spend most of their time with friends, so it is important that you are there to provide correct information on any subject presented.

Treat your teenager with the same respect you would have them treat you. Say ‘hi’, ‘I love you’, ‘how was your day’, etc.

Set aside time to speak with your child and ask them about their interests or what there day was like make sure to be an active listener. Show your child you’re listening and you are not judgmental.    

Talk often with your teen to bring out positive opinions, ideas, and behaviors by using an affirmative tone and body language. 

If you want to ask your child a question don’t ask questions that can be answer with a simple yes or no. Ask questions that require thought and will help the conversation.

When you are looking for a time to talk to your child take advantage of every opportunity (Standing in line at a store, driving to school, or in the morning while getting dressed).

Be precise and detailed about what you expect. If you’re giving your teenager instructions, write them down. It’s a fail-safe for teens and adults. This way they will remember what they are expected to do and you can feel sure that you ‘told’ them correctly. Remember, to-do lists will keep you stress free.