Troubled Teen Like a StornThe recent terrible events of Hurricane Sandy have certainly rattled the northeastern part of the United States.  Our thoughts and prayers go to that part of the country.  Interestingly, the nature of the events may be reminiscent of your troubled teen.  Parenting difficult teenagers can seem as difficult as battling a raging hurricane, but the truth is that unlike tackling a natural disaster there are preventative steps you can take to keep your troubled teen from getting beyond control.

In parenting difficult teenagers, there are a number of steps you must take that will help keep a small tempest from becoming hurricane strength.  Unless that moment has already been reached, you will need to handle this by following a series of simple, yet powerful steps.

Be Consistent

The first step in taking on the difficulties inherent in parenting a troubled teen is being consistent in your approach.   Unlike your teen that is experiencing mood swings and challenging your authority, you must be the rock of consistency in order to lay a proper foundation.  Essentially, the more inconsistent you are in terms of how you treat your troubled teen, the more problematic it is going to be in parenting difficult teenagers.

Set the Rules

Be sure to set clear, unambiguous rules for your teen to help refrain from bad behavior.  Setting rules does not necessarily mean that your teen will follow, but setting rules communicates that you have certain expectations.  Parenting difficult teenagers often means setting clear, precise rules that she can understand and know the consequences.

Even handed Punishment

When punishing your troubled teen for negative actions, be firm, fair and even handed.  If you scold a little for one action, then ground on a different yet similar situation, your teen may become confused and might lash out feeling that she has been treated unfairly.

Be their Parent first, not their Friend

The old saying that you can “choose your friends, but not your family” certainly rings true.  Your job as a parent is to best prepare your child for the world that awaits them.  All too often, parents want to express their love and affection by giving in.  While this is certainly a noble gesture, it can be damaging.  If your troubled teen has done something wrong or out of line, punish them appropriately and stick to it.

Even if there is now appreciation for all the work that you have done, your primary job is to raise a child that is ready for our complicated modern world.  Parenting difficult teenagers is certainly no easy task, but unlike Hurricane Sandy whose effects could not be halted, you can make a huge difference in making sure your teen gets through these difficult times.

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Parenting Mistakes with Troubled TeensThere are many households that have a troubled teen and at least one unhappy parent wondering what mistakes to avoid.  Parenting difficult teenagers is as old as time, but despite all the lessons history has taught, many parents still make the same old mistakes.  Knowing what to do when faced with a troubled teen can help you get through to your child and create a more responsible adult when they grow up.

There are a number of simple and important things to consider when trying to reach difficult teen and help him through this troubled time.  Start by eliminating the common mistakes that parents seem to make when trying to control the actions of their children.  By avoiding these mistakes, you can set up a clear path to reach your teenager.

Letting Your Emotions Take Charge

All too often in the heat an argument words are spoken that instantly create regret.  If you can’t control your emotions, then how do you expect our troubled teen to react?  The first order of business is keeping a reign on our emotions and speaking clearly and calmly to our children to let them know what is expected.  Naturally, arguments will happen and your feelings will rise to the surface.  Keep in mind that you are the adult and controlling your emotions is the key to getting through to difficult teenagers.

Saying One Thing and Doing Another

Consistency is also very important when dealing with your troubled teen.  If you say you are going to do something, then do it.  Keeping your word shows your teen that you take responsibility for your actions.  Over time, being consistent will start to pay off as your teen will see the importance of how keeping your word and following rules actually mean something important.

Trying to Control Thoughts

When arguing with troubled teens, parents often try to change their child’s mind to their point of view.  In essence, the mistake is attempting to get them to think like you do.  They can’t because they are not you and their experiences are much different than yours.  There are simply going to be times in which difficult teenagers are not going to see things your way.  That’s okay, simply agree to disagree on these occasions and move on.

Not Repeating What is Important

There are few things more hollow sounding then the phrase, “didn’t I tell you…” – especially when what you told them was a few months ago.  All too often, difficult teenagers get into trouble precisely because they are testing their boundaries.  As such, it is important to constantly remind them of the important items that they are likely to face so they can make responsible and thought out decisions.

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