“Adolescents are not monsters. They are just people trying to learn how to make it among the adults in the world, who are probably not so sure themselves.”
― Virginia Satir
Teenage years are the most volatile ones. The brain goes through numerous developments and the teenager starts to really understand the world around. The issues faced by them are more serious than people think they are. How these issues are handled can make or break a person.
Family plays a very important role in helping them to understand, deal with and solve these issues. Love of family decides the type of adult that they will turn out to be.
Hence, it is important to understand the issues faced by teenagers at home and how the love of family can help them.
The Fight for Independence
It’s the parent’s job to make decisions for their kid and “manage” their life. As the kid turns into an adolescent, he starts taking control of his life and starts to make decisions for himself. When the two parties struggle to maintain their autonomy, rebellion starts inside the house. This rebellion can make him aggressive and he will break the rules set by his parents the first chance he gets.
It’s important for parents to understand the psychology of their adolescent child and include him while setting up boundaries. Instead of declaring the rules, the reasons of the rules should be discussed in a frank and honest manner. This way, love of family helps the teenager to have a sense of independence and makes him a better decision maker as an adult.
Lack of Communication Between Teenager and the Family Members
It is common for a household to have occasional clashes when there is a teenager in the house. But, when the clashes turn into conflict or the issues don’t seem to resolve, the situation may be more serious and may need to be looked into.
Even when the parents are well-meaning, their criticism may not be welcomed. It may result into serious fights. The teenager, then, starts to feel that his voice isn’t heard in the house or his opinions don’t matter.
In such a case, parents must use some or all of these ways to improve communication through the love of family.
- Listen more, talk less.
- Celebrate their achievements.
- Use constructive criticism.
- Discuss the house rules rather than declaring them.
- Welcome their opinions and be open to change.
Struggle To Be Perfect
“So, I guess we are who we are for a lot of reasons. And maybe we’ll never know most of them. But even if we don’t have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them.”
― Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower
The idea of a perfect life drives most of teenagers and pushes them to work for good grades and excel in extracurricular activities. The problem here though, is that this idea of perfectionism can lead to anxiety in teenagers.
Perfectionist teenagers are actually very worried on the inside and their anxiety makes them very much afraid of failure. This anxiety affects their learning process and leads to lower achievement, anxiety disorder, depression, etc. The love of family plays an important role in diffusing this idea of perfectionism from the mind.
The mere act of empathizing with the teenager can help the parents understand their perspective. Not only their success, but also their failure should be celebrated. It diminishes the fear of failure. Instead the teenager starts perceiving failure as what it truly is, a mere lesson.
Type of Crowd; How Can Love of Family Help?
The friends that an adolescent chooses for himself, is not in control of his parents. Sometimes these “friends” may even be a bad influence on him. Here, the job of the parents becomes tough, as any comment made on the “friends” becomes an attack on his own self-esteem.
In such cases, the parents need to understand that instead of being judgemental, they should state facts. For example, the fact that their friend bunks classes should be stated instead of saying that bunking classes is the sign of a bad character.
Proper boundaries must be discussed, set up and consequences be discussed. The teenager will take some time in understanding why that friendship isn’t good for him. Allow him that time but also impose restrictions, while allowing a dialogue about these ‘friends’.
The issues that teenagers face at home can be mostly handled with understanding and love of family. Their psychology needs to be understood and their opinions need to be respected. Discussions at home should be encouraged rather than declaration.
The love of family is the sculptor that shapes the life of a teenager. In case the matters seems to be out of hands, professional help should be sought.
Do you know any more issues that an adolescent faces? Do you know any more ways in which the love of family can help? Share in the comments section below.