3 Tips for Parenting Teens in 2017

Posted on Posted in Embracing Family, Embracing Life, Embracing Parenting

Now more than ever, parents need to be conscious and fully engaged in their teenagers’ lives. 2017 is shaping up to be a memorable year for all of us.

I currently have two teens and a 24-year-old, Gabi. Parenting Gabi was way easier than these two. When she was a teenager, MySpace was all the rage. There were no apps and texting had just begun.

With my younger two, I have experienced everything from fight videos to lewd and explicit music. It’s a different world and I realize it’s an attack on our kids. They are assaulted with sex everywhere they go. You can barely watch a commercial without seeing some form of sex flashed across your screen.

As I laid in bed the other night, I prayed for ways to parent my teens while still giving them freedom. It kept me up half the night. I want to be a great mom. Check out that post <HERE>. I came up with the below three tips for parenting teens in 2017.

  1. SET BOUNDARIES – I had to let my kids know straight up, what is acceptable and what is not. Don and I sat them down and created contracts. These contracts include behaviors and grades. When they maintain or reach a certain item, then they already knew what the rewards or consequences were going to be. This eliminates the back and forth. We ask, “what does your contract say?”
  2. CHECK EVERYTHING – We conduct random checks of the cell phone(yes, they share one) and their tablet. If they do not immediately hand these items over, we automatically go into detective mode. My daughter has not had her own cell phone for the last two years. She had lots of foul language and just as yucky videos on her phone. Guess what? She survived not having a phone. When she goes out with friends, she takes the shared phone.
    1. KEEP COMMUNICATION OPEN – We have an open door policy in our home. They have the freedom to tell us anything, no matter how crazy it is and we agree to keep a level head. We talk openly about sex and everything else. My son told us he did not want us to have sex but we told him that as husband and wife, we will do it and love it. He was thoroughly grossed out, but it showed him we are human. They come home from school and tell us about kids doing things in the bathroom I didn’t even thing of until I was an adult. I keep a straight face and ask them if they would want to be known as the kid who did something like that. Of course they say they don’t. When I listened to some music my son had on the shared phone, I told him straight up that it was unacceptable. I also asked him would he be comfortable with his grandma listening to it. I told him our standards and how disappointed I would be if he continued to listen to it. I made him choose.

Parenting teens today is a challenge and will work you last nerve, however, it is rewarding. Remember to be a  safe place for them to share anything with you.

What ways are you connecting with your tweens or teens?

28 thoughts on “3 Tips for Parenting Teens in 2017

  1. Girl this now good. Parenting these teens is so hard. I wanna take my thirteen year old and just put her back in my womb for the next five years. I figure it’ll be easier to carry her around six feet and all. Lol

  2. I feel you on this, and I’m just getting started. My son is 12, but his friends live on social media. Although he doesn’t have social media accounts we have to discuss what they see, what they share. He needs to know how it can ruin your life if done wrong. Parenting locks are a must and open conversations.

  3. This is awesome advice! My daughter is only seven and I jusst recently allowed her to buy a Chromebook with her allowance. The only reason I did was because her teacher said she was scoring low on her reading standards test (but she reads well in class) and she thought it was due to her lack of computer skills at home. Apparently they do standards test on the computer these days. Up until this point I hadn’t even thought of allowing my child to have some computer time. It sort of makes me sad, but I put all kinds of blocks on that computer and I’m pretty sure I’m going to be the mean mom that makes her kids carry a flip phone with the push buttons, lol.

  4. As a teacher I can attest that these are great rules for parenting teens. The parents I encounter with set boundaries, open communication and involvement always have more successful and well mannered young adults. Even as a teacher I try to incorporate these “parenting” rules in my classroom.

  5. You sound like a phenomenal mother. I am 27 with no children, so this discussion is foreign to me. Even as a teenager myself, I was probably more like your daughter because a lot of things just weren’t options then. Of course, I did get frustrated and I’d endlessly debate the rules. This is a great list. Sending you strength and I hope your investment returns tenfold down the road.

  6. My step daughter will be 21 in a few months, and she hit the teen years right when texting became a big thing. It was a challenge because our values were a lot different than her mom’s, who allowed way more. But she understands why we hold our standards higher, and that we aren’t compromising even now.

  7. I don’t have kids but I do have a 16 year old niece so I can totally relate to this post! My sister definitely does all these things and they’re all super helpful. Thanks for joining the Thursday Three Link-Party on LiveLifeWell! I hope to see your posts again in the future.

    LiveLifeWell,
    Allison

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