Stay involved in his personal lifeIt’s hard sometimes to think of your teen as having a life outside of your family and household. In truth, the relationships that he forms at school, at work, and while participating in sports are an important part of his development. He needs to learn how to form these relationships and manage his relationships. He may not want you to be overly involved in these relationships and his life outside of the home. That is perfectly normal. But you may still be wondering, how can you stay involved? Ask him questions about how his day went. If he gets a bit prickly, it might be a good idea not to probe too deeply. You want to be involved, but you don’t want him to feel smothered or like you are interfering in his life. Other things you could try:
- Let your teen know that you welcome his friends into your home, perhaps for a movie night or summer backyard barbecue.
- Let your teen know that you are happy to listen and provide the support he may need with his relationships.
- Provide a safe and non-judgmental space for your teen so that he feels more comfortable communicating with you.
Spend more time togetherFor some teens, the idea of spending more time with their parents can induce a serious case of cringe. Getting past that isn’t going to be a simple process. Encourage your teen to pick out a few activities that you can do together:
- A camping trip can be fun for teens and parents. Whether you rough it with a tent and a few supplies or take the glamping angle with an RV outfitted with everything you need.
- An afternoon hike up to a local point of interest can offer plenty of opportunities for you and your teen to talk, laugh, and reconnect.
- Bike rides, skateboarding, or going skiing can offer you and your teen time to reconnect over a favorite outdoor activity.
- Family movie night, with plenty of favorite snacks and sweets, can give you and your teen time to laugh together or bond over favorite superheroes.
- Dinner for two is a great way to reconnect with your teen. An evening out with your teen can offer opportunities for reconnection and building upon your relationship. Whether it’s chili dogs on the beach or a nice dinner out with pasta and shrimp, the most important factor is reconnection and the opportunity to communicate.