In today’s rapidly changing world, where technology and social dynamics are constantly changing, it’s no secret that many find themselves wondering why teens don’t talk to their parents. The age-old challenge of getting teens to talk to their parents about struggles and challenges has taken on a new dimension in the digital age. If you’re a parent seeking answers, you’re not alone.
If you have a teen who doesn’t say much to you you aren’t alone. Jackie Brewton joins me on the podcast to discuss why teens don’t talk to their parents. Their answers might surprise you. We unpack their responses and examine simple things parents can do to break teenage silence and discover effective strategies to get our teens to have open, honest, and enriching conversations.
Top Two Reasons Why Teens Don’t Talk to Their Parents
Parents interrupt without fully listening.
Parents are always trying to fix their problems.
Admit Our Mistakes and Treat Kids as Individuals
No one likes to admit they are wrong or imperfect, but we are. The good news is our kids learn how to admit their faults when they see it modeled. Teens don’t expect their parent to be perfect but they would appreciate it when their parents admits when they make a mistake. I’ve had many parents express concerns about saying they did something wrong. The truth is, your kids will respect you more for being humble and honest. And that makes them feel closer to their parent. Remember, kids want to be treated like people, not just children.
Want Teens to Talk More? Spend Quality Time and Validate Emotions
Teens don’t need lavish vacations or expensive dinner dates with you. Their needs are rather simple, do activities together: go camping, play games, go for bike rides, etc. And don’t discount your family traditions. Your teen might not appreciate them at the time, but when they are older they will become the stories shared with others.
Avoid downplaying kids’ feelings and emotions. Everyone wants validation and your teen is no different. Teens will turn away when they don’t feel seen or heard by their parents.
Teens consistently mention their need to be affirmed. Marginalizing their thoughts and feelings can do more to push a child away, which is the opposite of what we want. We should look for ways to validate a teen when we are together.
Asking the Right Questions and Observing Behavior
Asking kids if they are okay and showing interest in their friends. A well-timed question helps the child know you care about them and their friends. Though they might not act like it, it does make teens feel loved.
Parents need to observe their children for signs of distress. Body language is a powerful communicator. It shows teens know they are noticed.
Stop Wondering Why Teens Don’t Talk to Their Parents
I know it can be hard to get teens to talk, but may I encourage you to ask the Lord to help reach their hearts by how you love them. Ask your child to help you learn to be a better listener and try to wait to be asked before trying to fix every problem. It might take some time to get your teen to open up, but the fruit of your efforts will be worth it.
About Jackie Brewton
Jackie Brewton left a thriving corporate career over 20 years ago to follow a higher calling. For over two decades, Jackie has been on a mission to empower teens and equip parents with the essential knowledge and guidance they need on the topics of love, sex and relationships.
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