How to Deal With Teenagers Who Don’t Listen, Even When You Give Health Advice Like Drinking Water from the Big Berkey Water Filter
Having a teenager can be challenging. You might be grateful that your child is finally leaving childhood, but is entering an even more difficult phase. Teenagers are in the middle of wanting to be independent but still, need parents’ help in different ways. This confusion usually manifests with how they act. Hence, teens are typically angry, isolated, and irritated. They also undergo bodily changes that make them feel even more uncomfortable. Even when you offer sound health advice, your teens don’t listen. For instance, if you tell them to drink water purified by the Big Berkey water filter, you’re only after their well-being.
You understand the need to drink plenty of water. You also worry about dehydration. Despite your good intentions, your children might still think of you negatively. They will think that you’re nagging them, and you deserve to be ignored. These tips will help you avoid having a shouting match with them all the time and make them listen to what you have to say.
Please don’t argue, especially when they’re angry
The way you say things could hurt the communication process. Try to stay calm and offer advice by using your friendly voice. When your children are angry for whatever reason, you can’t act the same. You also can’t assume that you’re the reason for such behavior. Teens go through a lot inside and outside the home. You must understand that they have a hard time maintaining a poker face and cannot hide anger. They also couldn’t separate the different aspects of their lives. You probably have the same moments. The difference is that you’re an adult and you’ve been through a lot. These teens are still processing the changes in life.
Learn to actually listen
Another way to let your teens listen to you is by listening first. You enter the conversation in a reactive mode, and you expect the discussion to be smooth. If you want to avoid having fights, you should show your willingness to listen. It doesn’t matter if you’re older or if you feel like you deserve to be heard. It should be a 2-way channel, and it will only make sense if both sides want to listen.
When listening, you actually have to understand what your child is saying. It’s a problem when you only pretend to care, but you don’t. While your child is talking, you’re already preparing what to say. You’re in a combative mode even if the situation doesn’t call for it. Once your child feels that you’re not sincere in listening, it could affect all other conversations you will have in the future.
Avoid judgment whenever you talk about any issue. There are times when to think you’re not judging, but your face can’t hide your thoughts. Even your voice can be condescending at times. Your children can see through your pretensions. Suspend judgment first and be more open-minded. You will realize that what your child is asking isn’t too much. You can also grow in this process. You learn how to be less judgmental and see another perspective.
Allow them to create rules
You might even hear your child telling you to be more trusting. It pains you to hear those words, but you don’t have a choice. You genuinely don’t trust your child to make decisions. Having gone through that stage yourself, you know that terrible decisions could be made. The best way this deal with it is by allowing your child to create the rules with you. It includes the possible consequences for violating the rules. Your child will be more responsible since there’s ownership of these rules. You can also say that if your trust is broken, it would be hard to take it back. For instance, if you allowed your child to go out but failed to return on the agreed curfew, it’s a violating of your trust. Next time, your child won’t insist on trusting you since you already did your share.
Present the pros and cons
If you intend to say no or you have to say something your child will probably dislike, present both sides. It will be a more fruitful discussion if you also provide the reasons. Don’t let it be a one-sided conversation where only your voice matters. Understanding the other side of the coin will also make it easier for your child to understand the situation.
Avoid always saying no
You have a hard time making your child listen to you because you’re the same as them. Even before they explain something, you already said no. You never show your willingness to listen. If you act that way, you can’t demand that your child also listens to you. You’ve already made it clear how the system should be. The worst part is that since you will say no anyway, your child won’t ask your consent in the future.
Appreciate small changes
Making your child listen to you is a considerable challenge; there are instances when even the smallest request is ignored. Therefore, if you see minor changes in behavior, you have to express approval. Show that you appreciate those changes, and you see them. Your appreciation will go a long way for teens who always seek for it. They couldn’t get one with peers, so they want to have it at home, at least.
Most relationships at home are broken because children go through this phase. Others couldn’t even mend broken relationships anymore due to the depth of the unresolved issues.
Don’t allow things to get worse before doing anything. Have an honest and sincere conversation with your child. Be open to changes at home. Allow your child to go out with friends or try new things. It’s difficult for you since you’re overprotective, but it’s the only way for teens to learn. You will also grow and learn along the way.