7 Ways to Gain Respect From Your Teen

One of the most challenging phases of parenting can be when your child becomes a teenager. Some parents breeze through, but most of us encounter some degree of difficulty. Here is a list of 7 ways you can minimize the disrespect and start to re-connect with your teenage son or daughter.

1. Do not let yourself be swayed by the "but everyone else is doing it" line. You know what is best for your son or daughter and the hostility they feel towards you for putting your foot down will soon pass and they will thank you later.

2. Make yourself emotionally and physically available despite your teen wanting distance from you. They're on the fence. Part of them is leaving the nest and the other part of them needs the safety and security of home.

3. Respect their personal space. It is not your right as a parent to randomly snoop through your teen's room. They do not become more trustworthy by hearing we don't trust them. If you have no reason to snoop don't do it.

4. Do not allow rude and disrespectful behaviour. If you respond to their putdowns and backtalk, you're allowing it. Learn to walk away or say things like: "If you continue to talk to me that way, you'll be grounded (or lose your cell phone privileges)."

5. Show an interest in the things that interest them. Grab any chance you get, just to chat. That can often happen in the car when you're chauffeuring them places. They still need to know their life is important to us.

6. If there are clothes or electronic items they want that exceed your budget, make them pay a portion of the cost. They will appreciate what they have much more and will less likely grow up with a sense of entitlement.

7. Make sure you set clear and consistent boundaries. Kids of all ages do well when the guidelines are clear. Even if they argue with your rules, stick to them anyway. Part of the role of teenagers is to oppose their parents.

Barbara Desmarais is a parenting and life coach and has been working with parents for over 20 years. To get more tips and insights on parenting visit her website at Claim your fr*ee copy of her popular e-book "Raise Your Children But Not Your Voice" when you sign up for her monthly parenting ezine.

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