Although communicating with your adolescent or teen can be
challenging, it is important to continually make the effort. This is especially
important when your child acts out with problem behaviors or seems troubled in
When attempting to talk with your adolescent or teen about problems
or concerns, schedule a "date" in a private and quiet place. During this
meeting, focus on these techniques to help you facilitate
Talk honestly about
specific situations and how certain behaviors affect other people. Convey how
even though the behavior may not necessarily be "wrong," it makes you feel
Discuss how you will deal with problem behaviors and how
you will reward responsible behavior.
Brainstorm ways to deal with
a problem and how to choose a solution.
Encourage your teen to join
a school club, sports team, or church group to meet new friends if his or her
current friends often get into trouble.
Help your teen plan for the
summer months or other times when there are long vacations from school. Focus
on productive activities, such as youth programs, camps, volunteer programs, or
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