Parents and Teenagers Print E-mail


I have not been a parent.

What I offer in my book GETTING REAL... about growing up! and in the programs I run comes from my experience of listening to young people's stories and from talking to parents.

The following is extracted from GETTING REAL... about growing up! and has been taken from a number of different resources.

Things to consider about teenagers:

  • They are in a curious, experimental, questioning time of life. They play around with ideas, clothes, friends and possibly smoking, sex, drinking and drugs.
  • It can be agonising to watch them make mistakes you can see coming a mile off. If in danger, warn them, otherwise let them go ahead - this is how they learn. They are in the process of becoming an individual - this is a natural process.
  • Think about the issues they face, examine your values and communicate your feelings and thoughts with them.
  • Anything you do for them that they can do for themselves is robbing them of an opportunity to grow up.
  • You may find them at times selfish, narrow minded and then affectionate and a pleasure to have around. This stage of their lives can be difficult, hard to understand, annoying or a delight.

They may feel the same way as you do!

Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
- THE PROPHET, Kahlil Gibran

Preparing Yourself and Your Teen

By giving them a good education about the biological, physical as well as emotional upheaval they may go through during adolescence, you are emotionally and psychologically preparing them for their changes. This gives them a good start.

Schools may not do this, unless they are very good ones. Make sure you know they are doing the best possible job otherwise don't rely on them.

As they grow and your teenagers ask questions, do your best to give them honest and accurate information. Back this up from your own experiences, especially as they get older.

You can use my book GETTING REAL... about growing up! as a resource to open up awkward conversations by reading it together and talking about the issues that are raised. Go here to order your copy.

Teenagers can be fragile during this stage of their development.

Parents too!

Develop a Positive Sense of Self

In workshops I ask young people to tell me things they like about themselves. Some teens can think of nothing.

The implications are that they: do not value themselves or do not believe what has been said about them or have not been given praise.

To change this - when you notice them behaving courageously, kindly, generously or if they are listening well - let them know that you see them doing this.

Examples: Jenny, I noticed you held Sarah's hand when she got upset. That was a very loving thing to do.
Peter, when that elderly lady slipped and you helped her that was very kind of you.

This gives them a language base for identifying themselves and a vocabulary to describe their good qualities. Praise them often. This helps them to create a healthy self-image. Adults can assist teenagers to bring their gifts and talents into consciousness.

To check out what workshops Amrita offers for young people GO HERE . She also work successfully with teenagers and parents together CHECK IT OUT. Sexuality what to tell them when and how, Fathering daughters are just some of the workshops Amrtita offers for parents.

Amrita develops programs specific to the requirements of any group who would like to invite her to work in their community. So get in touch with us.

Amrita is traveling around the world in 2004. For information about current events, talks and appearances at Conferences go to schedule.

This site is in progress and will be updated please visit again for further information.


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