Skip to comments.Surefire Ways to Turn OFF Your Teen
Posted on 07/08/2010 10:47:52 AM PDT by greatdefender
Talking with an adolescent can be like walking through a minefield. At any moment you could be asking what you thought was a simple, sincere question only to find it triggering an explosive response. You know that communication keeps you connected to your child, but it often seems to backfire because of the type of questions asked.
Research proves our instincts: The number one antidote to risky-kid behavior is a strong relationship with a parent. Believe it or not our kids even like us and want us in their lives! (Really!!!!) A recent Girl Scout of America survey found that tween girls want their moms even more involved in their lives.
The trick is how to stay involved the right way so we dont turn them off, they do want to come to us and we can be a sounding board to help them wade through tough issues. Watch out! The biggest turn off (according to tweens and teens) is often how we pose our questions.
7 Deadly Questions to Never Ask an Adolescent (Unless you want a guaranteed turn off)
Here are seven things you should avoid asking an adolescent because they are guaranteed to be big turn offs. Learn how to pose those trickier questions another way so youre more likely to get a better response from your kid (or at least keep her standing in the same room with you).
(Excerpt) Read more at shine.yahoo.com ...
Could be both. Parents wanting to be friends or kids thinking they are equals to adults.
I think she's got the cart squarely before the horse.
just testing to see what the heck is going on.....There is a noticeable lag when typing in whatever browser I’m using now.
Sounds like advice for parents that are concerned about their kid’s precious little self-esteem and those that want to be their “friend”. How about being a parent?
Actually the question that SHOULD be asked of teens is “how was your day....”. I tend to agree that the other questions sometimes should not be asked. Sometimes. If they are asked, it should be framed as “have you thought about...” and the “What was she wearing” question is perfectly legitimate. I have 3 wonderful teens right now - and I mean wonderful. They are polite, well adjusted, etc. and my husband and I are NOT their pals and they know it. In fact, they would never allow it. I can tell they are actually relieved when we enforce the “law” and set the limits. They have never been in any kind of trouble - actually the oldest is 20, not a teen - they don’t get snotty most of the time, and we are very proud of them. I think the secret is unconditional love. If kids are raised knowing they are loved unconditionally, they turn out just fine.
This is the funniest generation ever. They so live in fear that their children won’t approve of their behavior. No wonder kids despise their parents. They deserve it. BTW, are the Girl Scouts still handing out “Healthy, Happy and Hot?” I guess they scout for different things nowadays.
I think my parents asked every single one of those questions. I think I turned out okay. Matter of fact, when I did something stupid, my father would usually follow up the, “What the HELL were you thinking?” with a smack to the back of the head.
#1 question was “how was your day”, since the writer says kids aren’t going to “speak up” at that one, insist that they keep you in the loop as to their daily facebook, twitter, and livejournal posts.
“NO! ANYTHING BUT THAT!”
I don't see this among those families whose children have been homeschooled from an early age.
The number one antidote to risky-kid behavior is a strong relationship with a parent.
Maybe that is why homeschooling is so successful.
God Bless you! They are very good because parents, like you & your husband, believe in discipline, morality & personal responsibility. Even though it is not a easy task but not impossible. You are really a blessed family.
Looks like it’s mostly geared toward parents with daughters. I have two sons, now 21 and 17, so some is correct, some not. The correct observation is that if you ask “How was your day?” all you get back is “Good.” You do need to be more specific, like asking “what was for lunch?” or “what are you studying in chemistry?” The other stuff about “what was she wearing?,” well, for me to ask that about my son’s female peers would come off as creepy. Very creepy.
I can only give my observations about my sons, so it’s anecdotal. I spent much time with them and still do. We found common things around which to build a bond. We live near Indy and both boys are racing fans (and so was I when I was six). So we’ve been to every Brickyard 400, and went to every US Grand Prix. We also go to the 500. I’ve probably been to the track 50 times with at least one of them. We go to baseball games and hockey games. I spent spring break with my oldest son on a road trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame; his idea.
But, while it’s important to make those bonds, too many parents try too much to be “cool” and be like a friend of their kids and their kids’ friends. That’s a line I chose to avoid. When the kids have their friends over, it’s best to STAY OUT OF THE WAY. Keep your eyes and ears open, but do so from a distance. While your kids want you around for family time, they don’t want you around when their peers are around. I remember when our oldest went for 9th grade registration; as soon as we hit the door of the school, it was though we had a force field around us that kept him at least 15 feet away. Sometimes the kids and their friends will want to talk to you, sometimes not. It has to be a time of their choosing (unless they get out of line, then it’s a conversation of YOUR choosing).
So just use common sense. Spend time with them, but don’t hover over their every move.
DEADLY QUESTION 2: Why didnt you tell the kid to leave you alone????
DEADLY QUESTION 3: What was she wearing?
DEADLY QUESTION 4: Why are you sooooo sensitive?
DEADLY QUESTION 5: Why did you do that? (Even worse: What were you thinking?)
DEADLY QUESTION 6: Why didnt you just say no????
DEADLY QUESTION 7: Why dont you just get over it and move on?
Being insensitive will turn your kids off, however if you soften it and ask the same thing, you'll get an answer. It will depend on what your relationship is like and how you have raised them till the tween years.
I ask that ALL THE TIME - since they were able to talk!
I will openly bring up the topic of dress and how some dress is respectable and some dress like Lady Gaga is idiotic. I confront it directly.
I will say that during the tween years, they are more emotional, susceptible to peer pressure and from what I can see they are looking for ways to deal with it within the boundaries of HOW THEY ARE BEING RAISED.
Based on my reading of the article, the author seems to be speaking to parents of girls. I guess boys don’t have these problems (sarcasm).
Our experience (a daughter 28 and a son 25) is that some kids are chatterboxes and some have little to say. In response to “How was school?”, our daughter would give a detailed commentary of everything that occurred between 7:59 AM and 3:00 PM, when she got on the bus to come home. Our son’s typical answer, “Fine.”
To this day, she calls at least 3x/week, and gives my wife all the details (I prefer the Executive Summary); our son, when he calls, still prefers compact conversations.
While I agree with the author that the seven questions are indeed parents’ boilerplate, I don’t see any reason not to ask them. I really don’t care if my kids think I’m a dork. I don’t want their friendship. I want their love and respect.
My wife and I asked all of those questions; did we make a mistake? While our kids were basically well-adjusted, there were some rough spots. Those “seven questions” often were the stepping-off point for us to get over those rough spots.
Raising kids is not for the faint of heart. In the final analysis, if they know that you’re concerned about them (even if they think you’re a dork), you will get them through their “issues.”
By the time they have completed college, they will have become human,and they can actually be a bit of fun again.
Put a picture of grandma or grandpa on the cieling.
I couldn’t agree with you more. I bet your kids are wonderful! God bless you!
I liked your reply and believe the same of your kids.
We keep those lines of communication OPEN.
I love asking OPEN ENDED QUESTIONS - ALL THE TIME!
I have a drama queen tweener. She is also ADHD, and not adept at intuiting others’ intentions. She hates thinking things through, listening until I’m done with my point, and especially hates thinking before she speaks.
I have to spell out carefully what I mean, and insist that I get a respectful answer to the question asked. I am by nature extremely sarcastic and short-tempered, so I have to bite my tongue 1000 times a day and keep re-iterating to her and me that, in a family, we make a concerted effort to be kind to each other. We have many “do-overs”. Some days, I am completely worn out and frustrated. I think I should have just spanked her when she was little.
But then, I’ll hear her on the phone with a friend who is in a bad mood. Darned if she doesn’t put to use the lessons I’ve taught her! She really does count on me for a clue as to what to do.
Anyway, I think it’s not as important to “get it right” in asking tweeners or teens questions in a certain way. I think it’s more important to 1) convey love and genuine concern, 2) insist on respect 3) don’t give up. Just because one interaction went badly doesn’t mean it’s over. You didn’t give up on her walking, even after repeated stumbles. Keep trying.
It could easily have been written by both.
A variation of the question, long employed by my cousin and his wife who are amazing parents to four kiddies, is "High/Low."
Starting when the kids were very young, at the end of every day, they were asked to name the "High" light and the "Low" point of the day. In their family they called it High/Low. It got the kids talking about what bothered them and kept them from dwelling only on the bad -- even a bad day has something to be happy about or grateful for.
I think so, too.
My cousin and his wife, amazing parents to four kiddies, employ an interesting open-ended variation of the question.
Starting when the kids were very young, at the end of every day, everyone in the family named the "High" light and the "Low" point of the day. They call it simply "High/Low." It gets the kids talking about what hurts or is bothering them and keeps them from dwelling only on the bad -- even a bad day has something to cheer, be happy about or grateful for.
Respect is the most important thing. If they think they are being heard, then they will come to you with more important things.
Just the other day, my mom was having a birthday party for my brother. We were all having a conversation and she missed the subject. She asked something silly and we realised that she wanted us to repeat what we said so that she could follow along.
We all laughed. My brother, and I are both hard of hearing. For ages, she had kept on us whenever we missed something by saying that we should listen better the first time.
We asked her to get her hearing aids on. She finally got the point. We’ve been waiting years for her to understand what we go through every day. Years.
We learned early on that the generic question, “How was your day?”, wouldn’t get us anywhere. Instead, each night, my husband would ask each kid in turn, “What’s one new thing you learned in school today?”. Worked every time, and led to some very interesting supper table discussions.
All kids rebel in one fashion or another, or are you suggesting that homeschooled kids do not?
I actually relish the fact that each of my 3 kids pushed their limits while living under my roof in order that I could establish and enforce the limits, leading to a strong and positive parental relationship with all 3.
or are you suggesting that homeschooled kids do not?
Certainly they exist, but I have never met one provided they have been homeschooled from the beginning. If you check the Homeschool Legal Defense Association website they have links to research that show that homeschoolers have very few problems, and are socially and academically very well adjusted.
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