OPEN Question

If it takes a village to raise a child, what does it take to raise a teen?

(Your comments/response encouraged below!)

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One thought on “OPEN Question

  1. HI
    I’ve worked with adolescents for over 40 years.
    flexibility Hard fast rules don’t work.
    Remember your 10 year old is far more responsible than your young adolescent. They are wired for socializing don’t isolate them from their peers. Punishments….restrict TV, video games, computers cell phones. Never hit. They just hit peers. Encourage as much physical activity as possible.
    The loner…for some it is difficult to socialize find activities with others that follow your child interests not everyone this age is a social butterfly. Many people are not but that doesn’t mean they want to be alone. Make sure however quiet they are that they never tolerate bullying, I missed this one with my son. He mentioned it. I should have taken a stand. He was intellectual about it but it left some scars despite his popularity with many peers.
    Watch for isolation…talk to teachers ..they know a great deal about your child. Make sure they do their homework. Someone has to check their work daily.Teachers see them with their peers and know how they are faring socially. They have been with far more kids of this age than anyone else. They know the spectrum of normal. Listen if they are concerned. They are concerned for your child. Don’t hesitate to seek counseling. It is very helpful for them and for you. Avoid heavy drinking it is giving them the wrong message about how to cope!
    Get together with other adults that have kids this age and talk. Our kids need a community to raise them. An adult friend /coach/aunt / uncle are really helpful contacts outside the family. They may able to field more ideas with them as often they want to protect their privacy and it should be allowed.

    Where are you going? Who will you be with? What will you be doing while you are there? When do you plan to come home? Call me at ___ if I can speak with an adult I am familiar with you may be able to stay later. They protest but it says you care.
    I think of it as putting your child in a rubber box. They need to know where the walls roof and floor is. It makes them feel more secure. More confident. Despite what they say to you.
    Meet all their friends even if you had heard awful things about them. Invite them to your house. Show them respect, take an interest in them too. Make fresh fruit available and occasional cookies and milk. They are children still! Even if they begin to resemble adults. Encourage games by having them available. Don’t suggest them. Take them places that are cool then meet up with them periodically.. I think of adolescense as a revisiting of the toddler. First time being independent, wobbly and jerky need you around but not on top of them. Funny hair and makeup never hurt anyone. Avoid provocative clothing ……the boys are not ready for it . The girls don’t manage it well. Focus on doing school work well and being respectful of all other living things. Let them complain about their families too! Don’t react.
    Adults within proximity? Grades 6 through 9 definitely!
    structure, lots of exercise and or an interest
    (area of achievement) ie loves to read reads a lot. Physical contact with caregivers,lounging together, hugging, hair combing, back scratching. If they have some physical contact with adults they may be less likely to seek it with peers. Listening without reacting.
    I was very fortunate that my child was a swimmer. He got to hand out half naked with his peers in mixed age groups with an adult (the coach) within proximity. He came home clean tired and far less argumentative.

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