Conflict between parents and children is normal as kids reach their teenage years. In fact, some extent of conflict is actually beneficial for the growth of the child. However, parents often tend to lose their cool and get flustered more often when they are dealing with their teenage child. This may cause a strange sense of hostility and distance between the child and parent. It is possible that with the coronavirus pandemic when both parents and children are at home, such conflicts might have increased.
Here is a list of ways in which parents can strive to resolve conflict with their teenage kids.
Do not lose your cool
It might be extremely difficult for parents not to lose their cool when their teenagers are acting stubborn and tough. However, many parents find they overreact most of the times when they are trying to deal with teens. It is important that, as parents, you keep your cool and do not escalate the conflict at the moment. You should let the moment pass and try and reason with your child after some time. They will be more receptive to your ideas when both of you are calm.
Identify the real issue
When parents and teenager fight, it is often hard to point out the actual reason the fight has begun. It is important for you to reckon with yourself first and be able to realize what is the real reason behind your or your child’s temper. Sometimes, parents fight with their kids on insignificant things because they fear that their child’s actions will reflect badly on their parenting.
Set realistic consequences
When it comes to punishments for their actions, you should be careful not to overshoot the punishment. Remember the saying, ‘This is going to hurt me more than it hurts you’. Imagine a scenario, where you punish your teenager by not letting them go anywhere for the weekend. However, you too will have to stay at home with them.
Acceptance is key
It is a good thing to know in advance and accept that there might come a time when you feel embarrassed by something your teenager does. They will wear something inappropriate, or act immature or not compete an important school assignment. They might even lie to you about a few things. The only way you will be able to handle such a situation is if you let go of the fear of embarrassment. Do not let such fears cloud your judgement and affect your parenting. Such times are the most crucial and this is when your child requires your attention the most.
Present a united front
When dealing with conflict, both parents should present a united front to the child. You and your partner might not agree on every single aspect about bringing up your child, however, it is not smart to let your child feel so. You will need to reach common ground before you have a sit down with your kid. There are also times when matters become heated between the two parents rather than the parent and the child.
Allow yourself to disengage
There might come times when you would have done everything in your ability to get a point across to your child, but in vain. At such a time, it is okay to say that you have had enough and walk away for some time. It is important for parents to find their peace as well. Try again after you have cooled down. The calmer you are, the more likely is it to get through to your teenager.