Tag Archive for talking to teens

Conflict Resolution – new ways of communication

For moments when your teen is driving you mad!

communicating with children and how to improve communication skills, Conflict, which home is without it? And when it comes to teenagers, boy – do those conflicts really come! So how do you deal with them, how do you make your home more peaceful and happy for all?

I believe we can learn something from restorative justice techniques and ancient healing traditions when it comes to new way to communicate to get results. Read more

What can I do when my child will not talk to me?

Help! Sarah my teen just won’t talk to me

I recently had an e-mail asking me, what do I do when my child will not talk to me?

I asked this parent to explain how things went at the moment. Her conversations went something like,

Parent: Can we have a chat?

Child: No I don’t want to chat – get out of my room. I don’t want to talk to you!

Parent walks away…..

This can be a real challenge for any parent.

What do you do when your child will not talk to you?

Here are a few tips.

1. Don’t give up – just because they don’t want to talk to you, it does not mean forever, it just means for now so don’t give up forever, ask them to let you know when it is OK.

2. The can we have a chat line is normally coded for a kid as you have done something wrong and we need to talk about it! Can we have a chat is usually I have an agenda to this conversation but I am trying to fool you by making you think I want a chat. They are not fools, they know they are about to get lectured, so why should they stick around? So instead of can we have a chat, use all the opportunities you have to talk outside of the can we have a chat. Driving in the car, over the breakfast table, moments that are natural, where conversation can flow a little more easily.

3. A chat to a child normally means you talking, so instead of thinking of having a chat, think of having a listen instead. Zip your lips when you want to step in and if you listen, they will talk more.

This story does have a happy ending and the Parent did get to have a great chat with her child. When I asked her what she did differently here is what she said.

  • Capitalizing on him being open to talk, (made hay whilst the sun shined).
  • Showed interest and listened.
  • Didn’t bring up subjects he didn’t want to talk about/dropped them when he said he didn’t want to talk about stuff.
  • Praised him.
  • Told him I appreciated the chat; he said the same.
  • Was very grateful.

Great tips for us all indeed.

Still having problem getting your teen to open up? Why not get some of our Teen Conversation Cards they will get even the most silent child talking.

Parenting Teens – What to do when it’s your entire fault, but it actually isn’t.

Parenting Teens Tip Two – What to do when it’s your entire fault, but it actually isn’t.

How many times, when you’re parenting your teen, do you feel like you are blamed for something that is not your fault….my guess is a lot, right? Well you really do not have to put up with it.  Read more

Learn more about your teen

As Parents we so often dismiss our children’s musical tastes. We listen to the din and just want them to turn it down! But how much do we really listen to their music?

If we were for a moment just to ignore the noise and listen to what the music is saying, how much could we learn about our teens?

So I challenge you to go and listen, really listen to their music and the lyrics. What is the music saying and what feeling is it portraying? What could this tell you about your teen? What could your teen be trying to say to the world? What feelings and emotions may they be releasing by listening to this music. If the music they listen to had certain qualities about it what would they be? Is it about freedom to express, or choice, or perceptions? Are these the qualities that your teen has, or wants to have? You can learn so much about your teen by just taking that extra step and really listening to the music. What is your teen trying to say to you by the music they are listening to?

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I have just found Drugs – what can I do?

I have found drugs in my teenagers bedroom…help?

Parents questions

OK, I know how distressing this can be but don’t panic. It could be for his friend, you really don’t know. Most children will experiment with drugs at some point and I think we are foolish to think that that is not the case. Experimentation and addiction are two very separate things. The biggest clue that your child is taking drugs on a regular basis is a change in habits like sleeping, eating, going out with friends, etc. and major lack of interest in things they use to be interested in. If you are seeing this in connection with finding cannabis, then he may have a problem for which I suggest you seek help straight away. However, most parents know or have an inclination that this is happening and since I don’t get that from your question, I am assuming you have just found cannabis without any of the other circumstances.

Firstly, gen yourself up on cannabis. Most parents overreact because they don’t know the facts. A common misconception is that the majority who try cannabis continue to take it or go on to become heroin addicts. A lot if the headlines and moral panic out there are based on things that are untrue. As a drug, alcohol is far more dangerous yet as adults it fits more with our value base so we don’t panic as much.

Secondly, let him know how you feel, say something like, it is not ever OK for you to have cannabis in my house. You say it is for a friend and I believe you that this is correct. However, should I find out that this is not true, you will have broken my trust. I believe you are a sensible boy and I trust you to make the right decision around drugs. If you ever need to talk about this I am here for you. This serves a few purposes; it lets him know you trust him, which will mean that he is more likely to make a better decision, he sees you are open to believing him and talking rationally, so he is more likely to come to you if their is a problem and he also knows that if he breaks your trust in the future, there will be consequences.

Thirdly, let him know the consequences that this has. Even though you say this is for someone else, it has broken my trust in you a little by bringing it into my house and because of that there, will be a few changes. It is up to you to win that trust back. This lets him know that it is not acceptable. This betrayal of trust could mean different things for different families, so think about what this means for your family. Punishment is different to a consequence. Ask yourself, since this breach of trust, what you feel like doing less or more of for your child.

Keep an eye on the situation, take a note over the next month or so what happens, how he behaves, etc. Then make a honest judgement as to whether you think this was a one-off or not. If you think there is more to it, then you may need to take other actions but for the moment, lets just stick to making it clear what is and is not acceptable in your house and what will happen if it happens again.

Talk to your teenager about drugs with our teen conversation cards

Talking to Teens about Alcohol?

One in four of the children interviewed said their parents had never talked to them about alcohol.

Do you talk to your children about alcohol? Do you know where to start?

A Department for Children, Families and Schools study suggests children from heavy-drinking households are more likely to use alcohol themselves.

It also found that eight out of 10 parents had no pre-planned strategies to tackle irresponsible drinking by their children.

While the majority of parents said they were fully aware of their child’s drinking habits, one in 10 said they were unaware if their child had drunk alcohol.

The research is being published as part of a campaign to tackle under-age drinking.

Schools Minister Vernon Coaker said: “Today’s research shows that parents underestimate their influence over their child’s drinking and attitudes to alcohol, yet a quarter of young people have never spoken to their parents about the issue.

“That’s why through the Why Let Drink Decide? campaign we are giving parents and young people the confidence to have open conversations about alcohol, to ultimately delay the age at which young people start drinking.”

We say talk to your children now and if you need some help of where to start check out our Teen Conversation Cards

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