The emotional needs of a teenager include support from parents, teachers, and friends. These needs are crucial since teens are exposed to a ton of life stressors, such as
- Career choices
- Peer pressure
- Fitting in at school
- Preparing for College or University
- Part-Time jobs
- Getting a driver’s license
Here’s what you can do as a parent to ensure your teens’ emotional needs are met.
Take an Interest in Their Life
Take an interest in what your child is doing and who their friends are, and ask about their likes and interests. Find some activities you can do together or ones where they will tolerate your presence. The goal is to present yourself as supportive rather than overbearing.
Keep the Dialogue Open
Teens can be notoriously unresponsive and uncommunicative during their teenage years, but they still need to know they have the option to come to their parents for help whenever they need it. You must give the teen the most control over communication because they tend to be solitary beasts at home and won’t tolerate what they see as an invasion of their privacy.
What may seem a trivial issue to an experienced adult could feel like an overwhelming challenge to teenagers. Acknowledge and respect their struggle rather than tell them it’s not a big deal. Don’t rush in to save the day. Instead, allow your teenager to talk about their problem if they are open to dialogue. Get them to think it through and find solutions for themselves, rather than tell them directly what to do.
You probably miss the cuddles when your teen was a cute little baby, but most teens won’t appreciate the same level of familiarity. You can still foster a sense of family by spending time together, such as watching TV or a family outing to see a movie or visit a restaurant. They probably won’t want to do these things as often as you would like, but an emotional connection with family is still vital for a teenager.