March 23rd, 2011
I had a discussion with a mom whose teenage daughter has been giving her attitude lately.
Do you remember what you were like when you were a teenager? I mean, what YOU were like personally, not what IT was like in a general sense. We probably don’t remember our own know-it-all attitude, our ungratefulness to our parents, and our rebellious streak. Perhaps you’re thinking, “But I was never like that.” I don’t believe it. I think we all had that teenage angst, at least to some extent. I can say for myself that though I was always a “good” girl, I definitely did not listen to my parents and have done things behind their back that they wouldn’t approve.
Teen years are rough waters that we all go through. Some deal with deeper issues than others; some can handle it better than others.
How should we respond as parents?
It’s that time of life when our teenagers need more encouragement from us. Adding our criticisms to their negative attitudes does not equal a pretty picture. We often look at what they do wrong, without an equal word of kindness.We need to be their cheerleader, to be the adult to look past their immaturity.
Look for ways to encourage your children today. I don’t mean empty flattery, I mean words of grace and truth.
“I know you probably hate me right now, but I want to tell you, nothing you do can stop me from loving you.”
“You’re having a rough day and you’re taking it out on me. I want to let you know, that hurts me, but I still love you.”
“You’re doing so well in school, I’m proud of you.”
How can you give some encouragement to your children today?