5 ways to cope with a troubled teenager. Parenting a child of any age has its ups and downs, but parenting during the teen years comes with its own set of challenges and frustrations. The combination of hormonal changes and a newfound desire for independence can often clash with parents’ rules and boundaries, leaving all parties emotionally stressed and vulnerable.
Regaining control as a parent can be a very difficult task, but finding resources to help you and your family can be confusing. Friends and family are usually quick to offer advice, but the ultimate decision belongs to you as a parent.
If you’re dealing with an anxious, depressed, or uncontrollable teen there are options, and these five tips can help you deal with your child in a mutually respectful way that can ultimately bring your family back together again.
5 Ways to Cope With a Troubled Teenager
1. Speak With Your Spiritual Leaders
If you and your family belong to a religious or spiritual community this is a great place to start. Most pastors and other religious leaders often have extensive training in counseling, and if you’ve been a member of a spiritual community for some time, this person likely knows your child very well.
A family’s faith can be tested when a teenager is out of control, so counseling sessions with church leaders can benefit the whole family. In addition, your entire spiritual community is likely made up of people who have experienced the same issues, or who may be experts on the matter. Start talking and the help will come.
2. Consider Traditional Therapy
Therapy has changed a great deal in recent years and individuals or families have more options than ever. Licensed clinical social workers, psychologists, and other specialists have newer training, tools, and resources at their disposal, and many work with physicians when medication might be recommended.
Therapy often involves the entire family, but be sure that your teen has individual sessions as well. This gives him or her the chance to feel more free to speak their mind and gives the counselor more insight into the root of the problem. It can also let your teen know that you trust and respect their privacy.
3. Take a Parenting Course
We’ve all heard that children don’t come with instructions, and that’s true. Even the best parents don’t have all the answers, especially when it comes to a defiant teen. However, classes and lectures specifically focused on the teenage years can give you as a parent insight that you might not already have.
Taking a parenting class also shows your teen that you’re willing to work on the problem on your end, and this can go a long way toward reestablishing trust and may encourage your child to be more open and ask questions about what you’re learning.
4. Stand Your Ground
As the parent of any teenager knows they love to push the rules and boundaries. Whether it’s ignoring curfews, using drugs or alcohol, or skipping school, teens that test limits needs those limits enforced. That’s where you as a parent come in.
Refuse to tolerate bad behavior. Remind your teen that respect is a two-way street. Assure your child that you love them but rules apply to everyone in the home. Staying strong is hard but when you refuse to allow the chaos in your home you’re sending a strong message.
5. Consider Specialized Boarding Schools
Removing the child from the home is often the last resort, but in many cases it’s one of the most beneficial choices. Boarding schools for troubled teens, like DiamondRanchAcademy.com, offer specialized treatment in a controlled environment and can help your teen regain a sense of order and structure, and the benefits don’t stop there.
A stay at a boarding school can help your teen get back on track academically. Small class sizes and specially trained teachers offer the chance for a renewed interest in learning. Sports programs help your teen regain a sense of pride and teamwork. Onsite counselors who are experts in the psychology of teenagers can help get to the root of the problem. Close and monitored interaction with other students can help your teen regain a sense of place. All of these factors and more add up to a greater chance of success.
Parenting effectively is never easy at any age, but the teen years can be especially worrisome. However, there are resources at the disposal of every worried parent, and you owe it to yourself and your family to become proactive. And remember, this too shall pass.
5 Ways to Cope With a Troubled Teenager