Life isn’t easy, and it’s not fun to figure it out on your own. There are many sources to get information, but the best source is from your parents. So what are we talking about?
- Social Media
- Mental health
- Mental illness
- Poor choices
- Natural consequences
- Good hygiene
- Limits, boundaries, ethics
So how uncomfortable are you after reading the list? Have you talked about any of these things with your children? If not what is holding you back? When I asked my son this past November how he figured out Santa wasn’t real his response was “Mom I’ve had access to the internet for a long time.” Children and teens will get access, no matter how many safe guards we put in place. Instead of saying no, there needs to be an explanation and ground rules.
It starts with casual conversations in the car, or over dinner. Ask them what they are into, be interested in their lives. Difficult conversations will not be easy if your relationship is strained to begin with. So before you have the difficult conversations, work on your relationship first.
Be sincere and understand that this may take more than one conversation. You can just start with “I love you and I’m concerned.” It can also help to just have them listen. Share how you feel, and agree to talk about it later. Acknowledge the struggle and that you are always there to talk. Be careful not to jump in with your own agenda too early. You may be able to relate to what the are going through, or maybe not. Both are ok to admit. The most important part is that you want to work in this together.