It was so easy to talk with my daughter when she was younger. In fact, it was harder to not talk with her. There were times when she would go on and on about anything and everything. Things changed once she became a teenager. She didn’t want to open up as much and I had to be mindful of when and how I approached her. Raising a teenager is definitely an ongoing task. But, I have found that having some sort of common ground helps tremendously.
Opening Communication with Your Teenager
By having things that we can both relate to, conversation can become more natural and engaging. Instead of a battle of wills, it becomes a safe environment to bond and chat casually. Finding subjects that both parents and teens relate to can be a challenge though. The two-decade age gap causes us to have different interests and tastes. Fortunately, we found a few shows that we both enjoy watching together. How does that help? Check out this video Netflix put together about how some series can get families talking.
Finding Common Ground
When we sit down to watch movies or television shows with Munchkin, we have something to talk about. Even if it’s about how awesomely corny The Flash is, why A Series of Unfortunate Events is so addicting, or repeatedly mimicking antics from The Minions, watching these together can break the ice. It allows us to talk without tension or anyone being “right.” Once the lines of communication are established, we can keep it going and discuss deeper issues when necessary.
It’s so much harder to be a teenager now than it was when we were younger. The pressures they deal with on a daily basis are intense and, many times, are more serious than we can even imagine. That’s why it is more important than ever to get those conversations started now! We need to help our teenagers feel comfortable enough to talk with us, even if it’s about sensitive subjects. Only then can we offer advice in making good decisions and support them when it gets tough.
What helps you to communicate with your teen?
I received a year subscription of Netflix and a device to stream the content as part of the Netflix Stream Team. All opinions are my own.