Troubled Behaviors From Your Teenager

April 30, 2015

Teenagers are known for “acting out” towards adults and peers.  During this time of a person’s life, they are becoming more independent and may change their behaviors. The following is a list of common behaviors found among teenagers and how as parents, we can interact with our teen.

 1.     Becoming distant

Many teenagers do not want to hang out with their parents anymore. They want to establish they are old enough to take care of themselves and do not need the security of mom and dad. They typically prefer the company of others and parents may get ditched so more time can be spent with friends.  Make sure you understand where your teen is and who they are spending time with but give them some space to develop socially.

2.     Addiction to Social Media and Electronics

      Our society has learned to communicate using social media. Teenagers today grew up with video games, cell phones, and social media tools in their daily lives. Communicating with family is vital so declare a tech-free zone in your house such as the dining room table during dinner, the family room during game night, or the car when driving to events. During this time, try to ask your teen about their day, friends, upcoming events.

3.     Breaking Rules Constantly

       Since teenagers are trying to establish their independence, they will break family, school, and oftentimes community rules. Communication about laws and the importance of consequences must be established with your teenager.

4.     Hanging out with “Bad Company”

      Make sure you know who your teenager is friends with.  Throw a small get together and allow your teen to invite their friends over. This will give you a change to meet-and-greet and learn about your teen’s friends.

5.     Lack of Decision Making Skills

      Teenagers want to develop their independence but at the same time are not in a hurry to make major decisions. They live in a day-to-day world and do not see the future as something that needs to be planned for. Encourage your teen to talk about their future. What kinds of goals do they have? What are their interests? Take them to an area where their interests lie. For example, if they want to become  a police officer, schedule a ride-along.