It is not unusual for a very sweet and thoughtful child to turn out bad come his adolescent years. This is, in fact, a problem many parents go through. He used to be able to tell you everything, but now, your teen is more secretive and moody. You also suspect that his new friends are doing him more harm than good.
You have to understand though that adolescence can be the most volatile stage of a person’s life. Not only are teens going through physical and hormonal changes, but they are also going through psychological and mental changes as well. There is rapid cognitive development, affecting his thoughts as well as behavior, both of which are going to play a huge role in the formation of his character and personality. Add to the whole mix the want and need to belong, and you have a teen that can easily give in to peer pressure.
If you think the changes in your teen are more than just biological changes, that peer pressure is playing a role, then you need to do something. This is especially important if he is starting to indulge in illegal activities such as underage drinking, drugs, etc.
Establish House Rules
You need to establish house rules, not for your own peace of mind but for the sake of your teen. Give him a curfew; set a limit to his online and phone use; establish rules regarding attending parties such as no alcohol, no drugs, and no getting into a car driven by someone who has had too much to drink.
Discuss with your teen your expectations and what he can expect from you should he break the rules. When it comes to punishment and penalties, be firm and, most of all, be very consistent. Inconsistency and leniency when disciplining a teen will only make him disrespect your house rules.
Educate Him About the Consequences of Their Actions
Education is one of the keys to raising good children. Do not keep them in the dark just because you are embarrassed at having this kind of talk with your teen or you do not know what to say. Instead, be direct about it.
According to http://thenelsonfirm.com/ a criminal defense law firm based in Texas, says that there are many online sources where you can get proper information regarding underage drinking, drugs, sex and its consequences (teenage pregnancy and sexually-transmitted diseases), date rape, petty crimes, etc. These sites can help your teen understand the effects of their actions.
Seek Help from a Professional
Always show your teen that you love him and that he can always rely on you to help him. However, if you are having a hard time controlling him, then maybe it is time to throw in the towel and get him professional help. Below are some signs of when he needs help from a professional:
- Taking drugs and alcohol.
- Declining school grades.
- Regularly missing classes and skipping school.
- Social problems such as fighting with classmates and his teachers.
- Extreme mood swings and changes.
A rebellious teen can become a huge problem, but if you do not do anything to address the issue, this could lead to more troubles such petty crimes and juvenile detention.
Jennifer Dae writes for a relationship and parenting blog. She specializes in parenting advice, particularly advice for rebellious teens.
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