Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

3 Tools to Better Understand Your Teen’s Behavior

Navigating your kids’ adolescent years as a parent can be tough. Even the best kids will sometimes display undesirable behavior, such as moody attitudes or a failure to follow rules. Every parent wants to understand their child. Teens can sometimes be a bit difficult to decipher, but it’s possible if you have the right tools at your disposal. Here are three tools to better understand your teen’s behavior.

Improve Your Communication Style

Sometimes arguments between teens and their parents stem from some basic issues with communication. If your child feels like they can’t articulate how they feel to you without you getting angry or suspicious, they’ll likely resort to staying silent and secretive instead of opening up to you about how they really feel. One great tool to help you overcome these communication hurdles is the MBTI test. The MBTI test is a personality test that helps you to determine your strengths and weaknesses as a communicator. When both parent and child take this test, it can provide some real insight into why your communication attempts fail and how you can overcome these hurdles.

Understand Their Culture

You don’t have to sign up for TikTok or start shopping at the trendiest teen stores in the mall. However, cultivating a better understanding of your teen’s culture can help you to better understand them. Remember, the world your teen is growing up in is immeasurably different than the world in which you came of age. Your child has never known life without the internet or cell phones, which has affected their behavior and how they see the world. Familiarize yourself with their culture and you’ll better understand why your teen behaves the way they do.

Professional Intervention

If you’re experiencing serious communication barriers in your relationship with your teen, it might be time to consider professional intervention. A mental health professional can work with your family to identify any issues that might be causing disturbances in your familial dynamic. A mental health professional can also potentially identify any specific issues that might be plaguing your teen and making their life more difficult than it needs to be.

Adolescence is a tough time, so it’s important that you always remain sympathetic to your teen’s problems. At the end of the day, what matters the most is that you approach communication with your teen with empathy, understanding and grace.

Tim Esterdahl

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