Now, isn't that just a huge relief? Your teen IS crazy! In all honesty, I sorta thought I was gonna skate right OVER the teen years. I mean I've been a parent educator for years. So, yeah, I got this. Other people might have problems, but not little ole PEP Leader me!
Hahahhahahhhhahahahhahahahahhahhaha! They brought IT! Those kids of mine . . . BROUGHT. IT.
I saw Michael Bradley speak years ago, and these tips and stories still resonate with me!
1. Throw your grenade and get out of the way! Teens can't absorb lectures. Say your peace and do that stiff legged run/walk outta there! With teens we have to talk about touchy subjects - sex, porn, booze, drugs, etc. It's overwhelming, it's embarrassing, it's important. The grenade metaphor makes those talks less BIG and more FREQUENT.
2. Connection and the relationship is the way to influence. When we have a warm and loving relationship we can help our teen use their own brakes more frequently. This does not mean they get to do whatever they want, it means that we fold in having fun, watching silly You Tubes, taking them to Chipotle, listening to very, very long plot summaries of movies/books we may not be excited about. We laugh with them, we share, we try not to embarrass them in front of their friends. Influence, NOT control, there's a difference.
3. It's Developmental Baby! A lot of the teen behavior is developmental. The teen brain is pruning and building and pretty much under construction. We can not judge the finished project, we can not even tell if the house is mid-century modern, traditional, art nouveau, or a colonial -- it's just sorta a whacked out hot mess of unpredictability. This IS what it is. Your teen IS crazy, and we're all in this together!