Posts

Teen Dating Violence Is a Problem, but Texas Governor Vetos Bill to Stop It

Bipartisan legislation addressing adolescent abuse did not make it past the Governor’s desk. Read more

FDA Approves Covid-19 Pfizer Vaccine for Kids Age 12–15

Great news for teens who are ready to get back to normal. Read more

Watching Kids Conquer Fear at the Mountain Top

Ski the snow in front of you.

“Dad, is this an easy slope ?” Read more

How To Talk To A Teenager

Use Opportunities in their Context.

Typical conversations with a teenager

“How was your day?”

Riveting conversation for sure. We all want our children to be successful. Things would be so much easier if during the teen years we just did not have to talk to them.

Effective Communication

Our goal is to raise children who are ready to leave our house and survive in the world on their own. How do we do this? One key aspect is effective communication.

Discussions about sex

Parent-Child discussions about sex often break down because adults fail to accept one key concept. When our kids are young we tell them what our family believes. We explain what is right and what is wrong. As children age, they incorporate everything they learned from us and develop their own belief system. Their belief system is what guides their decisions. OUR opinions matter but THEIR opinion matters more. Here is the key concept:

The thoughts in THEIR heads guide their decisions.

Opportunities for meaningful Parent-Teen dialogue pop up every day. You want to be ready when one arises. Imagine you are listening to a song or watching a movie. Something you find inappropriate comes up. Don’t tell your teen how awful the lyrics are. Don’t judge. Engage instead. Ask you teen what the song means. Ask what they like about it. Ask them to tell you what the TV show is about. If they answer, ask another question.

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Blog Author: Dr. Jeff Livingston