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Saturday, September 3, 2011

Readers Question

One of my long time friends and blogger asked me this
Question this week. Its a good one. So I thought I'd
share it on Teen talk today.

I would love to have my teen learn all things, but what do
you do when they don't want to learn ANYTHING? My 14 year
old doesn't want to learn to cook, sew, clean, etc.
She doesn't want to learn electives. She doesn't even want
to do school work. How do you make them or change their
minds about stuff that's important? I'm at a loss as to
what to do with her.

I want you to know that you are not alone. My
oldest daughter is a joiner but the next one down will
fight me about every aspect of life and has I think since
she was born. My son is just in the preteen stage and
sends out signals of a difficult teen stage. I think the hardest
part for parents with teens is to not take it personally. This is
such a difficult stage for them. They are trying to find out who
They are and we seem to be standing in their way, which is a
good thing when they don't make wise choices. To them their
emotions are the most important thing at the moment.
It is reining that in that can be difficult.

I have an assignment for you this week. Work on building a
bond with your child. Sure you probably already have one but
really think about your relationship with them. Pray about it
long and hard. Do you spend much of your time talking at
your child? Are you hearing their feelings? Each day at least
3 times ask you child how they are feeling today. What
they are afraid off what they enjoy? If they come to you to
talk put down what you are doing and listen. Don't judge
and don't give advice just listen. Try starting a notebook

with your child. Write a short message with instructions
to pass it back when they are ready. Send only encouraging
words. Try not to pass frustrations You want the lines
of communication open, As WIDE open as you can get it.
It might seem slight at first but don't give up keep working
on it day in and day out. One day the teen years will
be over and that door will open wide again as when they
were small because you took the steps to listen.

I would suggest weekly family meetings. Involve everyone
in them. This will be the place where you sit with your child
and figure out house rules. Start with the rules of the house.
Allow her to create some of her own about her own personal
space. I know not all can be allowed to be decided by the
child but listen and decide together. Don't talk over one
another take you time. Then move to the consequences if your
teen doesn't complete the tasks assigned. What will happen?
Ask her what she thinks should happen if she doesn't
do what she is asked. Decide on Chores allow her to choose
from a selection. The idea is to make her feel like
she has control over herself. This is important because
most teens don't feel much control going on at this time.
That is way they fight for things that we think are unimportant.
The biggest part is then to stick to the plan. Stick to it
so she knows you will do what you say.

Keep things to a minimal for now. Stick to basic chores
and basic school lessons. School must be done. There is
no way around it. Allow her to set her due dates. She
may stick to them if she can set when she can complete it.
If it is work not completed then take something away.
Such as TV, Computer time, I pods, or Cell phones. Allow
for special reward days for hard work. Possibly if you sit
and create schedules with her you can show her that if
she completes this work by this day she will then have
this day or this day off to do what she wants to do or Perhaps
an afternoon off. Make sure she knows what will happen if
she does not complete assignments on time.

It is possible you are already doing all of this. Sometimes
Some teens are just really difficult to live with. In these
cases don't give up. Keep praying, keep listening and
get some support from a local foundation or create one
on your own. We need to stick together for them and
because of our love for them. Eventually they will have to
find out and learn on their own. Making their own mistakes .
When that happens we can't be there holding the I told
you so sign. We need to pick up listen, guide and be present.


P.S. I am no expert on the topic. If things get to far
out for you at home consult your Physician or Psycologist.


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