Thursday, 23 July 2015

Rule #168: Teen parenting

Teen parenting is a natural extension of, but very different from pre-teen parenting, and should be the beginning of the end of your parenting duties. Remember those times your teens did everything they were supposed to, when they were supposed to, without being told they were supposed to? Of course you don't, because that never happened. Take a good look at them. They're not babies anymore. Although I know most of us wish they still were. We start missing all the little kid stuff, but really we don't do them any favours by continuing to treat them like they're still 5. After rearing 2 kids in and out of the teenage years, I can sum up the most important aspect in one word.. responsibility. Give it to them. There's no better way to teach them how to become responsible adults. I mean really, they are adults now. I was out on my own by the time I was 17. With little guidance, a 15 year old should be able to look after the day to day tasks required to keep a house operating and certainly keep themselves alive.

We make excuses for our teens all the time. We still make their lunch because "they can't do it right" or we don't let them cut the lawn because "they don't know how". Well, that may be true but
we create those situations because we don't delegate those responsibilities to them. If they know they have to make a lunch or they don't get food, they'll learn pretty quick. I don't like to use the term "giving them chores". I prefer to consider it splitting up the responsibilities necessary to run a household. This gives them the understanding that they are contributing as opposed to doing what they're told. It's time to take it past the "get daddy a beer" stage. Some good examples of responsibilities you can easily start giving your teen to help them begin a life of responsible adulthood and ensure they don't turn into left turn lollygaggers or the type that needs shampoo instructions:

Pumping gas
Refill toilet paper
Cook dinner
Clean up after dinner
Shovel the snow

Take out the garbage
Make lunch
Tend the garden

Load the beer fridge

Just imagine all the free time you'll have now, to think of more stuff they can do.

In the new world, teenagers will be given the responsibility they need and deserve.


1 comment:

Agree? Disagree? Lay it on me!