Cool Mom Tips: Raising a Teenager
It isn’t easy being a teenager, and parenting a child in this age bracket isn’t any less stressful. But, you can get through those especially trying years with all of your sanity intact – if you learn how to become a ‘cool mom.’
No, I’m not saying to hand out the tobacco and alcohol or encourage illicit or illegal behaviors. What I am saying, however, is to lighten up and let lose. Teenagers have a lot going on and they need you now more than ever. You can definitely be the cool mom without giving in... at least, too much.
First and foremost, always be willing to listen to your teenager. They’re at a stage in life when they’re almost grown and trying hard to make those grown-up decisions. Give them the chance. When they know you value their thoughts and options it makes your relationship so much easier.
You could battle with you teenage every single day – sometimes all day – about the silliest, most irrelevant things that could send them into a teen spazz out! But, you need to learn how to choose your battles wisely. Remember that your child is growing up and needs to have some freedom, some decision-making authority. Don’t be so hard on your teen about every single situation.
Get to know your children’s friends. Most of my 16-year old's friends call me mom, and it actually makes me feel pretty good to know they think so highly of me. Invite them over for dinner, to play video games or to shoot hoops. Get involved with, not only your child’s life, but their personal lives, too. Just know when to step back. Your teen will give you plenty of cues to alert you that it is time to step back a little bit.
The most important way to become a cool mom who makes it through those years with her sanity: Let your child know how much you love them, as often as you can. But, more important than saying it is showing it. Be sure that you are always there for your teen, understanding that these are difficult years for them as well. They might not always want to talk to you, but knowing you are waiting with open arms on those occasion they do want your advice is quintessential. Love, compassion and care are all that your teen needs to grow into successful, happy adults.