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4 Helpful Tips for Parenting Teens 

We’ve all heard the jokes about dealing with the “terrible twos,” but the stigmas around parenting teens can be even more prevalent and intense. We always hear how their hormones run wild, they push everyone away, and how sneaky they become once they start yearning for some independence. 

We may even remember how we were back then… 

And with all of these horror stories floating around we don’t always talk about preventative solutions for the problems that can occur. 

One thing we forget to take into account is how adapting our parenting techniques can be helpful when embracing what teens need. That doesn't mean we need to change boundaries and expectations, in fact we should set those lines even more firmly during adolescent ages, but we can start changing our perspective of them as they begin to come into their own. 

As your teen starts to develop their independence it’s not rare that they start to push boundaries and rules at school and at home. They’re finding their identities and sometimes hitting limits is part of that process. However, it’s important that you have clear communication about what boundaries they should abide by and explain to them why that is. 

Discuss together what the rules should be and how they can change when behavior is good vs. bad. Set consequences for when mistakes occur ahead of time so they know are. Teens don’t have the full capacity to consider consequences as their frontal lobes are still developing, but this can be a great way for them to practice thinking about the impact of their choices. 

Most importantly, be consistent in enforcing these boundaries to help avoid confusion or resentment. They need to be reminded that there are solid consequences and they aren’t dependent on your mood at the time. 

As your child is preparing to “leave the nest” it can sometimes be harder on the parent than it is on the kid. Loosen the reins a little bit and encourage them to take on volunteer opportunities or part-time jobs to start learning what their skills are and what they enjoy. 

Encourage healthy money habits as they step into the working world. Set up a saving and checking account if you haven’t already done so, have them pay their phone bill and pay for their own gas to help learn the importance of saving and tracking their money.  

Along with financial responsibility, give them other things to start handling like setting up their own doctor’s appointments, filing paperwork for FAFSA, etc. These are all things they’ll need to be doing on their own soon, so start early to help them truly understand the responsibilities in daily life. 

Teens are going through a huge period of growth full of physical, mental, and emotional changes. They’re trying to learn how to deal with all of this change and part of that learning is searching for role models  in the world that they want to emulate with their future selves. 

Be an example of what an emotionally regulated adult looks like. Learn to not take things too personally when it comes to their outbursts, etc. and instead show them how adults handle difficult situations. 

Being even keeled will go a lot farther than responding with an outburst. Even if they don’t state they want you as their role model, they will naturally pick up on your reactions, responses, and problem management techniques. 

Showing them how to take time for yourself can also benefit them more than you realize. Teens are in a phase where FOMO is high and constantly being surrounded by people is typically the norm. Showing them how to prioritize self-care, alone time, and your own mental health will set a guideline for them to follow.  


Teens are learning how to deal with big hormones and big feelings, and showing them how to express these in a healthy manner can benefit them for years to come. When they’re having an emotional outburst, remind them they can take some space, take a deep breath, or try pausing for a moment to help them discover why they feel so emotionally strong. 

Being accepting of their big feelings while also teaching them how to handle the difficulties that come with them can help. Beyond anger, these years are usually the ones where love interests are overwhelming, friendship drama can be intense, and schoolwork can be overwhelming. Creating a space and listening to your teens feelings without trying to change them can help create a bond that’s more valuable to them than you know. 

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