Don’t procrastinate. If you suspect your teen is in trouble they probably are. If you think taking action will upset your teen, it probably will. But nothing else is as important as the health and safety of your child. Take the action because the end justifies the means. Doing nothing is not an option. You must do something.
Share your problem. This doesn’t mean writing a letter to a newspaper but it does mean talking to others. Your trusted friend, a self-help group you can find via the internet or your local doctor. Any and all of these folk may be able to offer practical advice and may be able to share your worry. A troubled shared and all that.
Communicate with the subject. This is heart to heart time with your teen. Listen to them. Find out what is wrong and how it has occurred. You need to fix their immediate problem and you need to remove or negate the reason it happened in the first place. You can’t so this by guessing. Go straight to your son and daughter and encourage them to tell all.
Give trust. A teen may still be your baby but in many ways they are a young adult. Trust them and let them see and know that you trust them.
Trust yourself. No-one knows the troubled teen better than you their parent. You know the behavior of your child and you know your own feelings and instincts. Trust yourself. If you believe a certain action or approach is the right one, have faith in yourself.
Link up with other parents. It might just be the chance to unburden your worries or it might be the name of a program which did wonders for someone else’s teen but talking to other parents can be a godsend. Groups like By Parents For Parents provide a wealth of contacts, articles and ideas on helping you help your teen. Online they are located at byparents-forparents.com.
Get professional help. It doesn’t matter if your teen’s troubles are major or minor, finding the right form of professional help can mean the difference between overcoming the problem and failing. There are many issues which can cause trouble for your teen and just as many programs and therapists who can help you through.
Give responsibility. Trusting your teenager with tasks like handling some household money can be a positive step. Teens want to be seen as adult and winning the respect of you their parent can boost their confidence and improve their trust. You want to know about any trouble before it gets out of hand. Remember many teens weather their storm and come through better than ever. And who better to help them than their folks.
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