Ah, puberty. The time when every problem seems like the end of the world. And the time when a child begins discovering their individuality. Unfortunately, growing up is never easy – not for the child, and especially not for the parent. With puberty often come disagreements, difficult days, and moments when your child can be downright cruel.
On the other hand, puberty is the time when your child slowly morphs into their adult self. This transitional period shapes who your child will be; with this in mind, it is extremely important for the parent to be available even if (when) the going gets tough. While it may occasionally be tempting to give up, there are several tips to help deal with the emotional struggles in teens.
Signs of Emotional Struggles in Teens
There are many outward signs of emotional struggles in teens. While no two cases are the same and the emotional struggles in teens can vary from person to person, several typical patterns frequently emerge. Some teens may express anger or sadness. Mood swings and rapid changes in appearance or friend groups could be indicators of inner turmoil. Also, many teens are tempted to try alcohol or drugs, especially as a response to stress. The first step to recognizing emotional struggles in teens is to educate yourself to the form they may take in your child.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the teenage brain is different from the brain of an adult. Recklessness, for instance, is a natural part of development – with the problem potentially worsened by the presence of emotional struggles in teens. Emotional struggles in teens are not a reflection of the parent; they are, in most cases, simply a phase.
When dealing with emotional struggles in teens, remember to:
- Watch for substance use and mental illness. Much of the time, emotional struggles in teens will pass with age. However, in some cases, emotional struggles in teens mask a deeper issue. If your child’s behavior lasts for extended periods of time or you suspect your child is using drugs or drinking alcohol, it may be time to consider professional assistance.
- Set an example. As much as teenagers would hate to admit it, they look up to the parents. By being a role model, you encourage your teen to try to emulate your actions – just make sure not to set impossible expectations!
- Listen. Opening up lines of communication with your child will allow them to approach you when they need help. Emotional struggles in teens can be lonely; if you are there for your teen when they need you, they are more likely to share their feelings in the future.
- Have fun together. Often, parents forget that their children have interests that may differ from their own. Bonding over an activity that is fun for both you and your child will allow you to gently guide your child onto a healthy path.
- Stay positive. While parenting a teen may hurt, in the end, keeping a good attitude is crucial to helping your teen become a well-adjusted adult.
Solstice RTC can help
Solstice RTC, a residential treatment center for teen girls ages 14-18, can help your struggling daughter find success.
For more information about Solstice RTC, please call (866) 278-3345 today!