More than ‘Friends,’ Teens Need Respect


Very often parents think that if they became their own offspring teen’s friend, then they will be able to communicate with less stress and more effectively. That view unfortunately is futile. A parent cannot truly be a like an offspring’s peers, and that sets up the parents for a huge disillusionment. Furthermore, when parents try to do that, teens become disappointed because their parents stop giving them hope and inspiration. When parents try to become their offspring teen’s friend, everyone lose.


Instead, what teens really need from their parents in terms of ‘friendliness’ is the respect that they deserve. Teens try to put together the pieces of the life’s puzzle, and they need genuine sincere input whether they are doing it correctly or not. This input can come most effectively from the parents, if the parents encourage, support, and give genuine loving critique to their teen. ‘Critique’ is supportive and character building, as opposed to ‘criticism’ that is often debilitating and discouraging. It is this critique and genuine loving guidance that teens need from their parents.


When parents respect their teens then they understand the efforts and anxieties they are going through in order to build their life. Through this respect, parents can provide wisdom and very importantly the hope necessary for their offspring teen to continue building his or her life in a stable, strong, and exciting manner. When parents try becoming their teen’s best friend, they lose the ability to inspire and give hope to their teen. The best way that parents can communicate to their teens is through respectful and hopeful appreciation that only parents could provide, and no one else.