Parenting adolescents is far from easy, but and thankfully there are a lot of good, smart people on the internet sharing wisdom and offering some solid advice.
Here are a few of the pieces I've read online recently that I thought you might find helpful like I did.
High School Stress: What This Teacher (and Mom) Sees by Lori Stratton on Grown and Flown
"We only have these interesting and creative kids in our daily lives for a short while. Let’s give each other permission to enjoy them and our time together. Let’s realize that GPA’s, a resume full of extracurricular activities, and college admission letters are not the only marks of a successful and happy life."
Five Ways Parents Can Help Prevent Teen Depression by Jill Suttie on Greater Good
"In another study, Eva Telzer and colleagues found that having a positive relationship with parents decreased activation of the ventral striatum, the reward center of the brain, during a risk-taking exercise performed in the lab. This suggests that parents can help reduce higher levels of teen risk-taking, which has been associated with depression.
So what does positive parental support actually look like? According to developmental neuroscientist Ron Dahl, the best way to help guide your teens is to provide appropriate supports without discounting their emotional lives. He suggests showing empathy, asking open-ended rather than pointed questions, seeking to understand rather than correct, being gentle when your teen’s words and actions don’t match, and showing support for their growing autonomy. A combination of warmth and appropriate limits, as well as looking for the positive in your child, is the best way to help them avoid depression."
50 Ways to Be A Great Example to a Child by Dr. Michele Borba
"Of course we want our children to become good, responsible, respectful and successful human beings! But in our quest to “do it all” we may forget that some of the most powerful ways to help our children aren’t in the things we buy but in the simple things we say. Example is everything. In fact, the Greek philosopher, Aristotle, years ago said that the best way to teach character is by modeling good example.
1. “Thank you! I really appreciate that!” (Courtesy)
2. “Excuse me, I need to walk away and get myself back in control.” (Stress and anger management)
3. “I’m going to call Grandma and see how she’s doing. She looked lonely.” (Empathy, compassion)
4. “Mrs. Jones is sad. I’m baking her some cookies. Want to help?” (Charity)"
Seven Ways Parents Can Help 13-Year-Olds Start Their Social Media Lives Right by KJ Dell'Antonia on the New York Times
"Don’t rely on your child’s own posts. 'You never want to rely on what they’re posting as the only barometer of how they’re doing,' Dr. Underwood said. It’s easy to see your child post a perfect picture and assume she is having a perfect night, but just like her peers, your child is putting out her most perfect self, and responding to others as that self. 'The most vigilant parent could read every word of a child’s feed and still not detect hurtful behavior,' she said. So ask your child how she’s feeling about what’s happening online rather than relying on her emojis."
A Handy Guide to When You Should Call Another Parent by Diana Simeon on Your Teen for Parents
"If you know for a fact —hearing it third-hand does not count—that another teenager is behaving destructively (or being victimized), consider how you can get the information to the parent. Examples of such situations include substance abuse, self-harm, relationship violence. You can approach the parent yourself in a non-judgmental, get-to-the-point way. 'Here’s what I know. I will not share this information with anyone else. And we do not need to talk about it again.'"
Raising Successful Children by Madeline Levine in the New York Times
"Parents also have to be clear about their own values. Children watch us closely. If you want your children to be able to stand up for their values, you have to do the same. If you believe that a summer spent reading, taking creek walks and playing is better than a specialized camp, then stick to your guns. Parents also have to make sure their own lives are fulfilling. There is no parent more vulnerable to the excesses of overparenting than an unhappy parent. One of the most important things we do for our children is to present them with a version of adult life that is appealing and worth striving for."
You May Also Like: Good advice for parents of high school freshmen
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Filed under: Parenting