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  • QUESTION: How do you encourage open communication with your Teen and/or Tweens?

    6 posts, 5 voices, 461 views, started Sep 11, 2008

    Posted on Thursday, September 11, 2008


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      As our children get older, they get more independent and may tell us less. I’ve tried to instill a sense of trust so that my children will not be afraid to approach me about anything. I always encourage them to talk and I am honest with them about what they are saying. At the same time, no matter what we are discussing I try to make sure they know I am not judging them as people.

      What do you do?  



        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Talkytina wrote Sep 12, 2008
        • I have an 11-year old boy and I am enjoying every minute of this phase in his life.  I am at a place right now where I have to keep reminding myself everyday that he will be OK out in the real world as he started Middle School this new school year.

          I too always encourage him to be open with me and his dad but ALWAYS in a respectful manner.  That is the one thing that I do not tolerate, a disrespectful child.  I have to tell you that I do tell him that as he gets older, his choices in friends and his behavior and society will judge him accordingly.

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        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Cheryl Phillips wrote Sep 14, 2008
        • I’ve raised two daughters who are now 22 and almost 24. The teens were not difficult but emotional...that was hard. I had to bring myself back to that age to understand. PHew....I made it thru.

          At home I have two boys 13, 10 and a girl who will be 8 in two weeks. My son, 13, is quite different from raising a girl, that’s for sure. Sometimes he doesn’t talk, sometimes he talks so much I’m not sure who he is. ha ha. Typically he’ll talk about stuff he’s really interested in. He goes from ambitious to lazy in 45 seconds. It’s all hormonal I guess??

          I let him know that I am NOT a “guy” so I don’t know what goes on, but I’ve been a teenager before (surprise!) and I wish my mom was more open and approachable on sensitive subjects. I also make sure I’m open to having his friends here, even though on a Friday nite when I just want to relax, I’d rather not be cooking for 3 additional hungry boys!!! It’s all an experiment...that’s how I see it.

          He wanted to grow his hair. I’m a fan of short hair on boys. He’s a skateboarder...and very individual for sure. So, we compromised—-keep it out of your eyes when you are talking to me or another adult and you keep the hair. So far, so good...with a few instances of“I can’t HEAR you, your hair is in your eyes“.

          Some days I long for retirement age and others...well, each day brings so much variety and change. What’s better for a Gemini Mom than variety?? :)

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        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Lisa Jander wrote Sep 23, 2008
        • Ohhh!! This is my favorite! I ask a million questions they don’t even realize I’m asking. I truly believe that the only way my kids will take ownership of their decisions is if they hear themselves making those decisions  out loud, in their own words.
          Here’s an example: Instead of saying “Do you think it’s a good idea to go to that party when the parents aren’t home?” Or worse “You are not going to that party if the parents aren’t home!” I begin ALL my questions with “who, what, when, where, or how (describe or tell me work well here too) I would ask something more like “What do you think Mr. Smith would say if he came home and found you and all your friends in his house when he wasn’t there?”
          This is an open-ended question that requires thought and a complete sentence as opposed to a grunt or one syllable answer or even “I don’t know“. I teach this technique to parents when they are at an impasse. The reality is that it is a sales technique and isn’t that what we are trying to do? Sell our kids on the value of living life the best possible way?
          Let’s not hi-jack the agenda and give them all the answers.
          Asking more questions is what works for far.
          Lisa j

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