Several parents tend to fall out with teenagers because they fail to understand their emotions. By imposing their will on someone who is facing hormonal changes, let alone unpredictable physical changes, misunderstandings arise.
Parenting skills are tested when their children’s emotions and attitudes change overnight. Every teenager passes through a rebellious phase but all that matters is how they are helped and equipped emotionally.
Bridget Uwamahoro, a 17-year-old student at APE Rugunga Secondary School, says teenagers prefer talking about issues as opposed to using force.
“I have no problem if I’m told that something I have done is bad or an immoral act but, I’m offended if someone just orders me to do what they think is right,” Uwamahoro said.
She added that she respects her parents and is happy about the way they talk to her about different issues.
“I’m lucky because my parents sit down with me and adviSe me on how I should behave without being bossy. Sometimes people mistake us for age mates,” Uwamahoro said.
Every child goes through biological and physical changes during their teenage years. For instance, while teenage boys are dealing with their unstable voice changes due to high levels of testosterone, teenage girls are dealing with higher estrogen levels and the start of their monthly cycles and changes in physical appearance.
One way of dealing with an emotional teenager is by listening to them. Many parents try to cope with emotional teenagers by trying to talk about their emotions. However, this approach may work for some teens, but not all.
According to Diana Kaligirwa a mother of two, parents have to befriend their teenagers if they are to help them emotionally.
“You don’t need to shout at a teenager if you want them to tell you what is bothering them. Use a friendly tone so as to get the information about their challenges,” Kaligirwa explained.
The 38-year-old mother said that scolding a teenager does not require shouting or the use of abusive language.
“Teenagers drift away from their parents every time they are abused and end up adopting immoral behavior due to peer pressure,” Kaligirwa said.
Whenever teenagers want to talk about their feelings or about anything bothering them, give them the platform and listen, don’t try to interrupt them. Listening will help keep the teenager’s emotions under control.
Teenager will always be nagging at a certain point, which is why it is very important to always try to understand teen emotions.