Can Teen Help Programs Help Rebellious Teens

Dealing with a Rebellious Teen and Getting Help

 

What is teen rebellion:

 

Teenage rebellion is an act of highest assertion of independence and little adherence to parental advice during the teen years of a child’s life. It is called a “rebellion” because it leads to an intense confrontation between the teen and their parents. Teenage rebellion may seem spontaneous and illogical for parents, but there are several underlying reasons behind the behavior.

 

Why do teens become rebellious:

 

There are multiple reasons behind the rebellion during the teenage years:

 

  1. The desire to be independent: Teens are somewhere between being an adult and a kid. The in-between phase causes a surge in motivation to change the status quo. The urge to be independent leads to increased defiance to rules, and not listening to parents.
  2. Heightened differences with parents: The rules that they have been following since their childhood, seem to be suffocating now. They question the rationale behind such rules and feel that the rules are curtailing their freedom. A teen might like things that are “cool” for their generation, but might be disapproved of by the parent.
  3. Impulsive decisions: Experts state that teens are prone to making impulsive choices. A teenager’s judgment can be overridden by the desire to seek thrill and encounter exciting experiences. It can cloud the discretionary thought process, which may eventually make them violate rules, and ignore risks in favor of rewards.
  4. Peer pressure: The teenage brain lays greater emphasis on the opinion of their peer groups so that they can feel a sense of belonging in those groups. A teen might want to do things to please the peers even if parents are against it.
  5. A change in the brain structure: Researchers note that the connections between the neurons of the brain do not develop completely until the mid 20s. The effect is compounded by the impact of puberty on the brain. An immature neural structure with the constant change in the brain design impacts their decision-making, leading to a rebellious behavior.
  6. A change in the brain structure: Researchers note that the connections between the neurons of the brain do not develop completely until the mid 20s. The effect is compounded by the impact of puberty on the brain. An immature neural structure with the constant change in the brain design impacts their decision-making, leading to a rebellious behavior.

 

 

How to deal with a rebellious teenager:

 

1. Stay calm:

 

  • Teenagers are still children. Do not get flabbergasted if you do not see reasons for their rebellion.
  • Be calm and use a polite tone to ask what’s on their mind.
  • Display a non-aggressive body language, expression, and show a genuine concern in your voice.

 

2. Set appropriate limit:

 

  • Punishments do not work the same way as they once did when your teen was a young kid. A teen can get aggressive and may even try doing wrong things deliberately to display defiance.
  • Do not slap a teen, lock them in a room or stop them from eating their favorite food as a punishment.

 

3. Have a respectful conversation as a friend:

 

  • You have been through teenage years too! Think how teens would think and put yourself in their shoes for a while. It will help you use the right words, phrases, and sentences.
  • Cut down authoritarian phrases (“I am your dad, and I know better so listen.”), instead use relaxed sentences (“Hey buddy, I am your dad and know a thing or two more. Let’s have a chat”).
  • A combination of nonchalant language and calm tone can help soften the rebellious teen.

 

4. Explain your intentions:

 

  • Your teen will not understand your rules unless you tell them the reason behind them. For instance, if you forbid your teen from attending late night parties, then tell them that you do so because you fear such parties could be places for illicit activities like underage drinking and smoking, and narcotics use.
  • Take the conversation forward and explain how these habits can have an impact on the lives of  teens and even their families. Use examples if needed.
  • The teenager may better understand the logic behind rules and instructions if you respectfully explain acquaint them to the negative consequences of doing things that are wrong.
  • Most important, take time to listen to their perspective on the situation.

 

5. Come with a win-win solution: 

 

  • Discussing limits with your teen does not mean that you have to bend to their demands.
  • Come up with a solution to the problem. Think of a plan that works for both of you. Say words like “Okay, I will allow you to go for an outing, but on one condition.” It will help the teen feel that you are accommodative and are not just ordering them to do things. In a similar way to parenting a toddler, teens feel more in control when choices are offered.

 

 

Having a systematic, step-by-step approach to the teen’s rebellion, where you take time to calm the situation and make space for listening, is the best way to cool down the situation. But sometimes both you and your teen have gotten so angry and upset that the conversation spirals out of control.

 

How To Know If Teenage Rebellion Has Gone Out Of Hand?

 

Here are some signs that the rebellion has overshot its limits:

 

  1. Prolonged display of annoyance and aggression towards parents or other family members.
  1. Change in attitude. Less interaction with family members.
  1. Always giving short and rude answers.
  1. Open defiance even when outdoors or deliberately doing things asked not to be done.
  1. Having no qualms about indulging in risky behavior activities like tobacco usage and alcohol consumption.

 

A teenage rebel is a cause of anxiety to their parents. You feel as if there is no end to the arguments and quarrels you have with them and the situation may seem hopeless. But keep your cool while dealing with such behavior and lay the foundation for a healthy relationship with your teen.

 

 

References: MomJunction.com

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