Teenagers are a tough lot to handle. The advent of technology and internet has exacerbated the situation. In such a bleak scenario, it becomes important for parents to take the onus of connecting with their teenagers on themselves.
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Speak to them everyday
Parents, in a bid to make money or lead their social lives, often forget to engage with their teenager on a day to day basis. In such cases, the communication gap starts widening which deteriorates their relationship. Parents must keep a track of their teenager’s whereabouts by speaking to him every day. Conversing with him on a daily basis will not only acquaint them with the emotional and psychological developments taking place in them but also make them feel emotionally secure. Touch upon the topics of dating, drugs, smoking and anything you feel is important enough to discuss with him. Keeping aside one to two hours on a daily basis for him will go a long way in transforming him into a sensible adult.
Get to know his friends
How many friends does your teenager have? Which all activities are their parents inclined towards? What do their parents do? If you fail to answer these questions, it is time to connect with his friends as well. As a matter of fact, friends play a pivotal role in influencing the choices he takes. The kind of movies he has started liking, his sartorial choices and favourite pastimes have a lot to do with the friends he has. Call them for dinner or take the group out for a long drive. Get to know them personally. Follow up on their activities and developments through your son. He will appreciate this thoughtful gesture of yours. Watch him opening up with you more often.
Highlight his positives
Are you in a habit of demeaning your teenager every time he fails to meet your expectations? In that case, I would ask you to go slow. Your son is already caught in a cobweb of mixed emotions and feelings which he is finding difficult to make sense of. Too much humiliation can completely destroy the positive self-image he has been trying to construct for a long time. On the contrary, find reasons to appreciate him and make him feel desirable. Figure out what his areas of interest are and try to compliment him on every achievement of his. This will motivate him to strive for the best.
Share your childhood memories with him
Teenagers love to listen to their parents’ childhood stories. They are curious to know about all the traits that they once possessed as a child. Why not spill the beans? Sharing your old memories with him will completely alter the way your son perceives you. Tell him about the mischievous conduct that landed you in trouble during your salad days. Disclose the name of the subject you dreaded studying as a child. Expose him to your imperfections. Act a little vulnerable and you will be surprised to the number of secrets he will come out with.
Indulge in a chore together
While busy schedules might leave both you and your son exhausted at the end of the day, why not think of an activity that helps both of you unwind? Gardening is a great way to spend quality time with each other. Teach him those valuable lessons of life when he is close to nature. You can also work on his culinary skills by asking him to help you out in the kitchen every morning. Praise him if he cooks well. Years later, he will reminisce about these beautiful days and thank you for making his formative years the best phase of his life.
Follow these pearls of wisdom and watch your relationship improve drastically.
Charvi Kathuria is an aspiring Freelance Writer. These days, she is scrutinising everything and anything that comes her way. Reading has become her favourite past time. She calls this hobby of hers, "food for brain".