Stress is something we all know about. We feel stress when we go through a tough time or experience. That might be when we lose our job, have money or relationship problems, become ill or face concerns about a loved one. And stress is not restricted to a particular age group or gender. Males and females of all ages feel stress at different times in their life.
Teens encounter stress when they break up with a friend or are subjected to being bullied or are under pressure to do well in their exams. Teens are often more stressed about a build-up of small issues rather the impact of one major incident.
Stress for a teen can come from other situations too like moving to a new school or environment, having high expectations placed on them by their family or friends, feeling usage in a particular neighborhood or when a close friend or loved one dies.
As a parent there are several things you can do to assist your teen when it comes to dealing with stress. The first is to become an expert listener. Many a teen wants to talk about the problem which is causing them to be stressed. They don’t want an adult simply telling them not to worry, to get on with life and grow up.
Become very good at encouraging your teen to discuss their problems fully and frankly. Hear them out. Be slow to give advice and quick to listen. If you think the issue is of low importance do not state this opinion. What seems trivial to you could be far more important to your teen. They do not want to be treated lightly. Don’t mollycoddle them but do not dismiss their concerns lightly.
Make sure your teen knows you are available to discuss their stress problem at any time. Don’t be discouraged if your child rejects any offer of help or chooses not to fully confide in you and ask for your advice. Go slowly. Be patient but be available.
Become a rock, a haven, a reliable port of call to which your child can return at any time. What your teen needs is someone they can trust and depend upon. You should be that person. You never know when your teen may wish to call on your help. Simply put, just be there.
Don’t change things because your child is under stress. Try and maintain the normal family activities and carry on as if nothing has changed. Seeing this steady family unit will inwardly assist your child. They will gather confidence from your on-going and reliable behavior.
Communication is a two-way street. Build that relationship so that communication is a natural and equal way of life. Trust from parent and child is vital and with that trust comes an openness. Troubles shared means that troubles are halved. Be there for your teen and watch as they overcome their concern and thus their stress.
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