How do you stay connected to teen agers?

@laglen (19782)
United States
March 19, 2009 8:31am CST
I have a fifteen year old. I feel her growing up and not needing me as much. I stay as involved as I can with out smothering her. I drive her to and from school, give rides to her friends. This way, they chatter and I hear what is going on in their lives. I know her friends and boyfriend. I control the time she spends with her boyfriend. Specifically, they are never alone together except at the library that is crawling with people including her friends and most of the time me! We eat diner together, we always spend Fridays together (no school on Fridays). he takes guitar lessons, I sit in on them always. What do you do to stay close to your teen agers?
4 people like this
7 responses
@bmorehouse1 (1029)
• United States
19 Mar 09
My children are all past the teen years now. Those teen years are very trying for both parent and teen. The best thing is to keep the lines of communication open. If you get mad at your teen, walk away. Come back later and talk in a calm tone of voice. Shouting at a teen only makes it worse. Don't hover! Be open-minded. Let them begin to spread their wings, within reason of course. Let them bring their friends home to watch a tv show or to work on a school project. For the most part, these things are what worked for me. Most of all enjoy your teen because all too soon they will be gone. Best wishes!
2 people like this
@laglen (19782)
• United States
19 Mar 09
Thank you for your input. I agree. It is nice to hear it from someone who has already lived it!
1 person likes this
@rsa101 (16104)
• Quezon City, Philippines
19 Mar 09
I don't have one yet but I think you are doing just fine. You allowing space for your daughter but then being aware to her whereabouts and happenings is just admirable for you. Getting bonding time with her also helps you two to become open with each other. I think that is what most parents should be doing to be able to see their daughter or son growing with confidence with their parents.
2 people like this
@laglen (19782)
• United States
19 Mar 09
Thank you. I want ot enjoy her for the limited time I still have....... :)
1 person likes this
• Canada
21 Mar 09
I think you are doing an amazing job!!!! I have 4 kids, my oldest is a son he is 14, my next is a daughter and she is 11, the next two are boys and they are 6 and 3. With the older two we will get the younger ones to bed nd we sit, watch t.v and talk. We watch movies, and I make a point to take them each for individual time. I think the gift of space, and time are always the delicate balance. Communitcation, and respect are essential, and challenging them to be who they can be, who they want to be is beautiful. By this I mean when one of my older two take a tone in speaking with me, I immediately challenge them, by saying I don't think I deserve that tone, and you are being kind of disrespectful to me right now so how about if we walk away and try again when we can both be free of frustration?
1 person likes this
• Philippines
20 Mar 09
Hi laglen. I understand just how you feel. My daughter is thirteen...I still can't believe that sometimes...there are moments when I also feel unwanted. But I guess I could say that we are pretty much connected...hope it stays that way. I think you do have a very strong bond with her. I also get to do most of the things you mentioned except for the boyfriend part. Mine doesn't have one yet. I also try to keep up with whatever it is she likes doing so that we could talk about her interests without me getting lost along the way. You're doing a great job as a parent. Thanks. Happy weekend.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Mar 09
Well, I'm 18 years old and if I were a parent of myself. I could do a lot of things to stay connected with me. I would definitely start by making my child appreciate me. You know, buy him/her their first car, show them support, give them money, take them shopping. Appreciation is the key. The best way to stay connected with your teen is to satisfy their demands. Teens are demanding
• United States
23 Mar 09
And support them when they're down in the dumps or when they get depressed, just tell them that you're there for them. Same with stress, teens definitely get stressed a whole lot.
@riyasam (16578)
• India
8 Apr 09
my kids are not yet in their teens but i think you are doing just fine.you are giving her enough freedom but their are restrictions ofcourse,i do admire the way you are trying to get involved in your childs life
@tinam13 (840)
• United States
1 Apr 09
im seventeen and obviously i don't have a teenager=)...but my mom is nothing like you. that's a compliment. i wish that she asked me more about my life sometimes, because i don't feel like she cares. whenever we talk about anything serious she criticizes me for what i believe, or she completely denies me and changes the subject. i would like for my mom to do half the things you do with your daughter. you should feel pretty good about yourself, because in the future she'll thank you and probably come to you for all her problems.=D