How to Communicate with Teens So They’ll Talk To You
A parent of a tween reached out to me the other week and said, “Help! My daughter is not talking to me anymore and I don’t know what to do about it!” I’ve known this mother now for some time and know that she really doesn’t handle it well when she feels rejected. She went on to say that her and her daughter in the past always had a close and joyful relationship and now she felt her daughter was pulling away from her.
Can any of you relate to this? Ok, here’s my first tip. First you really need to just stop and take a breath, and understand that this behavior is a normal developmental stage of adolescence. Depending on your personality style and the style of your Kiddo, will depend on how you both deal with this stage, and interact – or not, with each other.
As your child becomes a teenager it’s totally normal for them to become a little more distant as they navigate through their teenage years. However it’s not easy adjusting to the fact that they don’t want to hang out with you as much. One of my personal needs is that I like to have my own space, so when my kids were teenagers it didn’t really bother me too much that they wanted it as well.
If you have a need to lead a conversation and really love to connect with people and be included, then you might feel a little different. Here’s another tip for those of you that have these needs, you’re going to have to learn to, “Let it go!” And give your teen some space to connect and communicate with you in their own time. Remember they still love you but you just need to understand as a teen they’re going through so many changes that are affecting them physically, cognitively, emotionally and socially- so, try not to take their behavior too personally.
Let them know you trust them…
Trust is an important part of any relationship. As your kiddo gets older and starts becoming more independent, it can be difficult to find the balance between a teenager’s need for independence and privacy, and your need to know what’s happening to keep them safe. So, let them know that you trust them to make the right decisions and that when they give their word for example they stand by it and are willing to keep their agreements. You see, your kiddo needs your trust to help them in their transition through to adulthood. However, this trust needs to be mutual. You both need to meet in the middle and develop a healthy way to trust in each other and each of your decisions.
The truth is, your teenager really does want you in their life. Yep, I’ll say it again, they really do want you in their life! They want to share with you what’s going on in their world. They just don’t know how to navigate this weird space between childhood and adulthood, and are pushing you away while trying to figure it out. Stay calm and don’t, “Make a mountain out of a molehill”. If you have taught them right from wrong then let them navigate the teenage years knowing that they have you there to support them when things get tough. Remember, we can all make mistakes and the last thing you want is your kiddo feeling too afraid to speak to you because they have messed up. If you can understand the needs, emotions and fears that are driving your personality and the personality of your child, then it’s so much easier to communicate with them. That’s why I highly recommend that you both take a DISC Personal Style Assessment that really does give you the strategies for opening up those communication channels. My Kids DISC Report is for both children 10-15 yrs and I even have one for adults as well. Take advantage of the Xmas special prices we have on offer at the moment, by clicking on the link above.
Ok, do you remember what my first tip was? First you really need to just stop and take a breath, and understand that this behavior is a normal developmental stage of adolescence. It’s totally normal for them to become a little more distant as they navigate through their teenage years. And depending on your personality style and the style of your Kiddo, will depend on how you both deal with this stage, and interact – or not, with each other., so go take a DISC online assessment.
The truth is, your teenager really does want you in their life. Stay calm and don’t, “Make a mountain out of a molehill”. Let them know that you trust them to make the right decisions and that when they give their word for example they stand by it and are willing to keep their agreements. At the end of the day also let them know you love them unconditionally and that as a family we all are in this crazy thing called, “Life” together. And as a friend of mine says, “Onwards and Upwards!”