Anne Kosem Life Coach

Tips for Connecting with Your Teen

Tips for Connecting with Your Teen

By February 6th, 2014 Uncategorized Comments Off on Tips for Connecting with Your Teen

It’s a beautiful day outside and you are trapped in the car with your surly teenager. Eyes are rolling, lips are curling, attitude is oozing into the leather seats and infusing your car with a heavy dose of gloom. You might ask yourself, why am I trying so hard when he/she obviously doesn’t want anything to do with me? For the same reason you’re reading this blog post – you love your teenager and you’re desperate to connect with them again! This, by the way, doesn’t mean you’re glutton for punishment, it means you’re a good parent!

Here are a few tips:

Don’t Force it! If all they ever want to do is listen to music on the way to school, let them. Be in tune with your child’s internal modem and approach them at a time when they are more accessible.

Be Available. Take advantage of every opportunity to spend time with your teens. Plan things to do together.  If there is suddenly a hole in their schedule, make one in yours. They may not have the foresight to make ‘quality time’ a priority, but you do! Positive time spent together will build a positive relationship.

LISTEN. When your teen is talking, give them their space. Be sure not to interject or cut them off.  Respond to what they have said in a way that lets them know you were listening – not judging! Don’t give your opinion unless they ask for it!

Let it Go. If they start a battle, get up and walk away.  Do not engage.  You cannot control how your kids act, but you can control how you act (and react). Create a mantra that you repeat to them when they are arguing.  It can be something simple like, “Let me know when you’re ready to talk.”

Dial In -Get Current. Teenagers are, by nature, not as comfortable with face-to-face conversation as adults.  Learn how to text. Check your email daily. Listen to their music, watch their shows. Make an effort to understand their world.

Dial Down – Disconnect. Set up a time each day, at least an hour, when everyone in the house can disconnect with the outside world. Parents included. No phones, email, or surfing the net. This includes television, unless the family is watching a show together.

For  more information, there is a great article by Debbie Pincus of Empowering Parents: