Kids can be tough to deal with and even tougher to raise and this is especially true of soon –to–be teenagers and teenagers of course.
There are a lot of things parents can do to help their children survive this turbulent phase and also maintain their sanity.
Growing up children have a tendency to argue and rebel for every little thing. Pick your battles wisely. Do not get sucked into unnecessary ego duels by letting the little stuff go while coming down firmly on bigger issues.
Try to recall your own rebellions at that age and do not get caught in I-Never-Thought-Or-Acted-Like-This- At-This-Age.Please understand, the environment you grew up in was not fraught with over exposure of all things sundry.
Try to empathise with the child. Understand how the child perceives and defines his world.
Respect your child’s quest to be his own persona within the constraints of peer pressure and the pressure to conform to social rules and regulations.
Learn about playground politics and lend a careful ear when the child vents his frustration.
Guide him to fight his own battles with the full knowledge that you are always there for him.
Learn to listen patiently and effectively even though the child might be behaving unreasonably or maybe being pig headed and selfish.
Understand the lure of substance use and find out what you can do to protect your child from drug and alcohol abuse.
Instil a desire for involvement – be it in academics, hobbies, sports – anything which will help to channelize their physical and creative energies in a proper way. It is an excellent way to keep them from becoming obese, irritable, hyper emotive couch potatoes.
Promote a sense of spirituality which will always keep the child rooted to the correct values in life and provide him the inner strength to face the competitive world.
Set rules that are fair, clear, concise and above all consistent. Ensure that the rules you spell out are to be followed by everyone in the family and following them does not fluctuate with your moods.
Find and retain the will to parent wisely, even though your child may profess to hate you at the moment.
In your efforts to help your children, try to set them on the path of developing a good self image and a healthy self esteem as well as providing discipline so that their behaviour remains within reasonable bounds.
It is rather tough as a parent to have the maturity and patience to deal with growing up children in an effective manner. Even tougher to maintain that fine balance between being giving, gracious and over indulgent; to decide how much is too much or too less….it takes parental savvy, communication, asking others for help, vigilance, awareness and continually working with your child even if the child chooses to rebuff you.
Most of all it requires a lot for intelligence and courage not to buckle under the pressure of tantrums. It really helps to develop a family code of ethics and values to stand by and set a known boundary for the family members to respect and maintain.