How To Tell When Your Teen Is In Trouble
How To tell When Your Teen Is In Trouble And What You Can Do To Help Them
Generation Z has many obstacle that most of their parents didn't have to deal with like cyber bullying. In this changing world it's very vital as parents that we keep up with these trends that have a significant mental and emotional grasp on our teens. With the growing number of young deaths through violence, and the all time high suicide rate of young people, it's educating parents on the signs and symptoms that could possible save a life or lives of many.
What Parents Should Pay Attention To: Sometimes in this hectic world it's easy to not notice what may seem insignificant. Here are some things as a parent that should be noticed.
1. Change in friends or peers who give off a "weird vibe." Follow your gut instincts. Get involved with who your child's friends are. Invite them to dinner, take them to do activities. Talking with your teen and their friends while doing an enjoyable activity will allow them to open up. This is when you find out what's really going on. If you are a family that has many social gatherings personally invite your teen's friend and their parents. You can learn a lot about who they are by spending time with them. If you find out information you don't like don't forbid them from seeing this individual, just voice your concerns. Tell them to watch out for things that you notice. Sometimes forbidding makes it more adventurous. A parent can control this situation from the home; limit the amount of time they spend with the unwanted guest by spending more time with your child.
2. Ethical or moral changes in your teen. Lying when they didn't used to lie. Stealing when they didn't used to steal. Change in how they relate to you. If they used to be respectful and are now using profanity in your presence when that didn't used to occur. If a child uses profanity in front of a parent and this is okayed by the parent....this is an issues and the parent should seek out parental counseling. Sometime stessful events can trigger moral or ethical changes like parents going through a divorce, loss of a family member, school issues, loss of boyfriend/girlfriend. Whatever the case, if it is distressing enough your teen needs help.
3. Change in school behavior. Grades going down are a great indication that something is wrong. Skipping school, not wanting to go to school when going to school had never been an issue. Getting suspended or expelled from school is an indication that something is not right. This is probably one of the most "missed" signs that something wrong is going on with your teen. Make an appearance at your teens school. Showing up at school shows teachers and administrators that you are vested in your child's education. You will also get important information on what is taking place at school.
4. The use of drugs. Don't let the "it's just marijuana" stigma get you. It's not just marijuana (meaning this is detrimental to developing brains)! The average grade of a marijuana smoker is a "D". More teens enter drug treatment every year with marijuana abuse/dependence being the primary disorder. The majority of teens not graduating from high school indicate some sort of drug use. 90% of teens who die by suicide have mental health and/or substance abuse issues. The drug war is a serious and dangerous battle with teens today and the increasing number of drugs hitting the streets and accessibility is heinous.
5. They used to communicate with you and now they don't. Communication is a weapon of mass construction. It is so important to have good communication in life period. Children learn to communicate from their parents. It is vital that the lines of communication remain open in any successful relationship. Spending thirty minutes of your day talking with your teen can make a world of difference in their life and yours.
6. Keep tabs on where your teen is. A parent should always know where there juvenile is and what they are doing. If your teen is spending the night at Sara's house, call and check with Sara's parents and make sure they are where they said they would be. If your teen works keep their schedule or even better pop up at the job and make sure they are there. Being a consistent and spontaneous parent will make them have second thoughts about being sneaky.
7. They have had trouble with the law.
WHAT TO DO IF THESE THINGS OCCUR?
1. Counseling. Most teens aren't going to just go to a counselor and tell everything and be fine. It may take months for them to open up. They also are not going to confide in a therapist who goes back and tells the parents everything they've told them. So, it should be a therapist that both child and parent trust. I always say a good therapist is like a good pair of jeans, you have to find the one that fits nicely.
2. Get counseling for yourself. It really helps a counselor to see the parent individually and juvenile individually. It sheds a lot of light on the situation. However, again if you work really well with the counselor, but your juvenile seems to have issue with them. It may be necessary to see if another therapist in the office can work with the juvenile. The therapist can still consult with each other on treatment plans. Everyone needs someone to talk to and therapy is good for everyone.
3. PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR TEEN......... sometimes it's as simple as spending time with your teen. Eating dinner together, going on a walk, watching a movie together, playing a board game, beating them at their own video game will rack up huge points with them. But be involved its very important for their development and helps keep them out of trouble.
4. Keep your teen busy. Whatever they like to do "SUCK IT UP AND LET THEM." If they want to play a musical instrument, rent one if you can't afford to buy one. If they like to paint, invest in canvases, paints and materials. If they like poetry by them journals. If he wants to wear black nail polish buy it for him! Be open minded about what your teens interest are. Sports are a brilliant way of getting teens involved and allowing them to get that built up energy out. Teens actively involved in sports and activities are at a lower risk of getting into trouble.
5. Support your teen in whatever crazy idea they may have, unless its going to cause them or others danger or get them arrested. Being supportive means listening to them. Most of the time your teen is going to tell you their plan before they actually partake in it. Really listen to them, because that is the key to understanding where their thoughts are and their emotional state. Be open minded and try NOT to be hard on them or they won't come to you for wise counsel in the future. Also try NOT to be to soft either, because you are not your teen's friend, you are the parent!
© 2014 kthierry76
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