LivingDoes your adolescent son think that "you have no...

Does your adolescent son think that "you have no idea" or "you don't know anything"? Seven keys to managing this moment in a respectful way

When our children are young, parents are everything to them: we are their great references, their superheroes, those who know everything … We are a well of wisdom with an answer to everything and full capacity to solve any situation.

But when they reach adolescence, their vision of us begins to change . Our children begin to discover who they are, to build their own identity, and to seek primarily the opinion and acceptance of their peer group. It is then when they say to us that “you don’t know anything” or “you have no idea” (whether it is about fashion, music, what is carried among young people, what they are feeling or living …) , leaving us with our mouths open.

If the phrase sounds familiar to you, here are some tips that will help you avoid unnecessary arguments with your child and handle the situation in a respectful way.

First, keep calm

Faced with certain comments and reactions from our son, it is normal for parents to feel hurt . But if we act with the emotional brain and allow ourselves to be carried away by anger, frustration or anger, we can end up entering a “power struggle” with the adolescent that will not lead to anything good.

Therefore, it is important to breathe deeply, take distance from the situation and address our child only when we are calm and we are sure that we are not going to say anything that we later regret.

Empathize with your child

Although it seems distant, it should be remembered that we too were adolescents , we went through the same feelings and we live the same situations that our children are experiencing now. What’s more, surely we also came to think at some point that our parents had no idea of anything.

On the other hand, it is important to understand that adolescence is a stage of discovery, reaffirmation and independence, in which it is normal for the adolescent to begin to separate from their parents to make their own decisions.

Therefore, let us empathize with our children and with the needs and changes of this stage of life , and avoid falling into meaningless discussions that end up undermining our relationship.

Out with pride !: “Indeed, I have no idea but I want you to teach me”

Between our son and us there is such a great age difference that it is normal that parents do not understand many of the things that adolescents are currently experiencing. From the way they dress to the music, the latest trends in social networks, the fashionable dances, the slang of their communications …

But far from comparing ourselves with them (“I at your age used to …”), ridiculing their tastes or wanting to impose our absolute truth, it is good to recognize our shortcomings while showing interest in knowing more about them.

For example, we can say to our son “he may not know or understand what you are experiencing, so I need you to explain it to me”; “Indeed, I have no idea, but I want to learn. Teach me”; “All I want is to understand you better to be closer to you” …

In short, it would be about showing him that you are really interested in knowing more details about his life, his friendships, his tastes, his hobbies, what worries him …

Is there anything I can do to improve my relationship with my teenager?

It is always a good time to examine your conscience and reflect on what we should change to improve the connection with our children. But especially at this stage it is convenient to frequently review our way of acting as parents , since the challenges of adolescence can end up causing distancing and wear and tear in our relationship.

So let’s check if we connect with our adolescent as we should every day; if we listen to him without judgments, sermons, or interruptions; if we foster a climate of trust to speak; if we demand too much of them; if we are very controlling … In short, it would be a matter of detecting those aspects of our relationship that could be improved.

Take care of communication

Likewise, when you speak to your adolescent, take care of both oral communication and non-verbal details . In this sense, it is important to look him in the eye, smile at him and establish physical contact (a hand on the shoulder, a pat, a caress … these are gestures that denote presence, love and interest).

Your communication must be respectful, close and warm . Listen carefully to what he tells you, ask him how his day went or how he feels, and share these kinds of details yourself. If at any time your child does not want to talk to you , respect their space and privacy, but making it clear that you will always be available when they need you.

Photos | iStock

In Babies and More | Apathy and Pasotism in Adolescents: Why Does My Child Care the Same, Adolescents who have a close and strong relationship with their parents tend to be more empathetic with their peers, How to make peace with your children after an argument (and Why is it important to do it)

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