Adolescence can be a confusing time of change for teens and parents alike. Much like this comical video below where your once child seems to have changed overnight!
So how can you use your parenting skills to deal with the challenges of raising a teen. Here are some possible tips.
Give positive Attention
One of the most important parenting skills needed for raising healthy teens involves positive attention. Spend time with your teen to show him or her that you care. Listen to your teen when he or she talks, and respect your teen’s feelings.
Be near them
If your teen doesn’t seem interested in bonding, keep trying. Regularly eating meals together might be a good way to connect. Better yet, invite your teen to prepare the meal with you. On days when you’re having trouble talking to your teen, consider each doing your own thing in the same space. Being near each other could lead to the start of a conversation.
Take parenting more seriously than you would a full-time job
This means both parents must understand their children are a trust from Allah, and He will ask how they were raised.
Reduce or change work hours and exchange them for time with the family
It is better to have one full-time job, fewer luxuries in the house (i.e. more cars, expensive clothes, a bigger, fancier home) and more time with the family, than many material things and absent parents. This goes for mothers and fathers.
Be aware of problems and address them straightforwardly
As you spend more time with your teen, you will be more able to sense if there is something bothering them. Don’t brush this feeling under the carpet. Address it with them in a respectful manner.
Ensure they are involved in the Jamaat
The Jamaat is full of activities be it you have a son or daughter. Ensure they are part of the setup as it will keep them busy with positive and allow them to develop good relations, inshallah.
Provide the right role models
Sometimes as parents its not always easy to be on the ‘level’ with your teenage son or daughter. Allowing them to be around positive role models who perhaps can relate to them better can help. This can be someone within the family or even the Jamaat can assist in this. If you have concerns, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Last but not least-Pray
It is really Allah who guides and misguides, but if you’ve done your job as a parent, Insha Allah, keeping your teen a practicing Muslim will be easier to do than if you had neglected this duty. As well, pray for your teen in front of them. This reminds them how much you love them and your concern for them.
We would love to read your advice as well, please send in your comments
See also a great video discussing some thoughts and advice for raising your teenager amongst the everyday challenges of society