Adolescents, why do not we speak the same language?
The same thing happens to all parents: as soon as our children get into the stage Teen, the communication, before simple and fluid, now becomes a task that is very complicated. What happens, maybe We do not speak the same language? Do not panic, you just have to change your approach and strategy.
Adolescence is often considered as an evil that inevitably must pass as if we were talking about a disease. We have this feeling because we consider this stage as a process full of conflicts.
However, if we think of adolescence as a stage of learning, we will discover very positive aspects. In fact, in this period young people have an amazing capacity for absorbing new information and we, as responsible for the child, must cooperate with our model.
It is worth remembering that our way of acting is going to serve them as something to look at. In this way, we can consider adolescence as a period of maximum learning of new concepts, an opportunity for future development and independence.
The deal with teenagers: what has changed?
It is true that when we reach adolescence some elements of the scenario of dealing with our children change. For a good communication it is necessary to empathize with them, since it is a time full of changes, both from a physical and cognitive and emotional point of view. For all this, that they feel understood by their parents is essential for their optimal development.
To begin to understand them it is necessary to recognize the concept of "mourning" that is usually generated in parents before the loss of the relationship of a child that passes from childhood to adolescence. From that moment on, the parents went from being the ones who marked the behavior and the way of thinking of the children, to realizing that we have stopped having a direct influence on them.
For the transition from childhood to adolescence to develop naturally, it is important to promote autonomy and transmit a positive idea about adolescence, without the negative labels that society usually imposes.
The welfare and safety of adolescents depends on their access to the ideas and values of their parents, adolescents need to be able to express their doubts, trust their fears and explore possibilities with an adult who listens to them without making value judgments and helps them to make responsible decisions.
Tolerance to frustration: the challenge of adolescents
One of the most valuable aspects we can teach an adolescent is tolerance of frustration, that is, learning to accept a "no" as an answer. It is a stage in which countless ideas, feelings and projects arise that the adolescent would like to carry out, but whose consequences it is difficult to calculate. Therefore, giving them a "no" answer will help them train their frustration tolerance and to prepare for a world that continually denies us what we want when we are adults.
The "no" should always be accompanied by the logical and rational reasons why we have decided to deny that project to the adolescent, so that he can reflect on them and on the consequences that would have to carry it out. He must know that he is not denied "just because", but because it can be harmful, either directly for them or for the environment.
It is common for the adolescent to interpret the denials as a lack of confidence or as a negative attitude of the parents. It is fundamental that this does not happen and that the adolescent knows and learns that he is denied a project for logical and understandable reasons and on which he can meditate. At the same time that the necessary limits are established, the adolescent has to feel particularly protected and welcomed by his family, he must note that he has family support and that we have full confidence in him, even if we do not agree on some concrete projects .
Raquel García Zubiaga. Psychologist from the Institute of Applied Neurosciences in Education
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- How to establish trust between parents and children