Have you ever had that moment when you are having a heated discussion with your teen but you are also having a verbal battle in your head with yourself? You know, when you’ve told them “no” as a knee jerk reaction, but you can’t for the life of you figure out why you said no. And as you stand there defending your decision, you are trying desperately to figure out how to save face and change your answer at the same time!
It’s not rocket science but it sure seems as difficult. Can I give you a suggestion when you find yourself in this situation? It’s not earth shattering, but I have found it to work. Stop, even if it’s in the middle of your sentence, and ask your teen to repeat their request. Seriously, it’s that simple. Take a moment to really listen to what they want, ask them questions that will help you more clearly understand the situation, and if necessary, tell them you have changed your mind.
This doesn’t show weakness at all. It does show your teenager that you know that sometimes you realize you are wrong. That shows wisdom. Sometimes, you change your mind because you know you are wrong. That shows courage. And wisdom and courage always result in respect.
And isn’t that one of the main things we want to teach our teens? Respect.
Check out the online parenting class for this month here.
Walking with you,