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WHAT MAKES TEENS TICK? Implications for Parenting Barbara B. LeBlanc, LCSW, BACS.

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Presentation on theme: "WHAT MAKES TEENS TICK? Implications for Parenting Barbara B. LeBlanc, LCSW, BACS."— Presentation transcript:

1 WHAT MAKES TEENS TICK? Implications for Parenting Barbara B. LeBlanc, LCSW, BACS

2 Working with Parents and Adolescents Identify parenting styles which support adolescent development Identify red flags indicating when to refer a family for counseling Provide parenting tips to enhance parent/teen communication

3 Parenting Styles Diana Baumrind, 1967 PERMISSIVE (too soft) – Goal: Child must find his own way – View of behavior: I dont count, childs needs are more important than mine – Job: Keep child happy and do not interfere with what he wants

4 Parenting Styles AUTHORITARIAN (too hard) – Goal: Control, obedience, order – View of behavior: Child is being bad – Job: I must make him stop or control him, Im the BOSS!

5 Parenting Styles AUTHORITATIVE (just right) – Goal: Self-discipline, consideration of others, ability to mange feelings, cooperation, individuation, order – View of behavior: Developmentally appropriate – Job: I must teach and be an effective leader

6 How Rules are Enforced PERMISSIVE – No follow through, child pursues own goals AUTHORITARIAN – Attempts to change the child, inflexible, aggressive, finds fault, punishes, imposes own solutions AUTHORITATIVE – Prevention, honesty, response to circumstances, collaborate to find solutions, logical & natural consequences, teach new skills

7 Child Outcomes PERMISSIVE – Loses initiative, blames others, lack of persistence, impulsive, lacks consideration of others AUTHORITARIAN – Relies on others for direction, people pleaser, can only influence life through rebellion AUTHORITATIVE – Develops self-control, self-determination, able to set goals & take responsibility for actions

8 Why Does Authoritative Parenting Work? Control that appears fair and reasonable to the child is far more likely to be complied with and internalized Parents model caring concern as well as confident, self-controlled behavior Child internalizes emotion regulation skills, emotional and social understanding Strong and caring relationships provide basis for more effective reinforcement

9 Why Does Authoritative Parenting Work? Demands fit a childs developmental level and ability to take responsibility for own behavior Children learn they are competent individuals who can do things successfully Fosters high self-esteem, cognitive development, and emotional maturity

10 Helping Parents Become Responsible GOOD PARENT I must control – Rewards/punishes – Demands obedience – Tries to win I am superior – Pities child – Overprotects – Spoils – Shames – Acts self-righteous RESPONSIBLE PARENT Child can make decisions – Permits choices – Encourages attempts – Accepts mistakes as part of learning I am equal – Respects and believes in child – Encourages independence – Expects child to contribute STEP--Systematic Training for Effective Parenting, 1989, AGS

11 Good Parent I am entitled: you owe me – Over concerned with fairness – Gives with strings attached I must be perfect – Demands perfection – Finds fault – Over concerned with what others think – Self-image depends on childs achievements Responsible Parent I believe in mutual respect – Promotes equality – Encourages mutual respect – Avoids making child feel guilty I am human; courage to be imperfect – Sets realistic standards – Focuses on strengths – Is patient – Not concerned with own image STEP--Systematic Training for Effective Parenting, 1989, AGS

12 Good Parent I dont count. Others are more important than I – Overindulges – Become slave – Gives in to childs demands – Feels guilty about saying no Responsible Parent I believe all people are important – Encourages mutual respect and contribution – Refused to be doormat – Knows when to say no STEP--Systematic Training for Effective Parenting, 1989, AGS

13 HOW TO ENCOURAGE SHOW CONFIDENCE – Give responsibility – Ask childs opinion or advice – Avoid temptation to take over BUILD ON STRENGTHS – Acknowledge what child does well – Encourage taking the next step – Concentrate on improvement, not perfection

14 VALUE THE CHILD – Separate worth from accomplishments – Separate worth from misbehavior – Appreciate the childs uniqueness STIMULATE INDEPENDENCE – Avoid pampering the child – Dont do for child things he/she can do for himself – Help child develop a sense of independence

15 Tips to Enhance Communication Build the relationship first – Teens want parents to know them – Find out about interests first, issues later Accept there will be things a teen doesnt tell parents

16 Teens want limits placed on them – Have clear communication about negotiable and non-negotiable rules o Non-negotiable: Health, safety, drugs and alcohol, school attendance, respect o Negotiable: Curfew, phones, homework, friendships – Give responsibilities o Take care of their body o Take care of their possessions o Family chores o School work

17 Teach problem solving – State the problem – State how parent feels about the issue – Listen to how teen feels about the issue – Brainstorm for solutions – Set up consequences – Time limit a trial run – Evaluate progress

18 Spend time with teens – Value of family meals – Listen more than talk – Take them seriously – Give respect to get respect – Show an interest in having fun

19 The Typical Teen Wants parents to know & respect him Is troubled by peer pressure Perceives the world through emotionally charged lenses Has very few time management skills Likes the practical and social side of school Wants limits placed on him Often feels insecure and anxious about growing up Gets in trouble due to inexperience

20 When to Worry Drops out of school and/or social activities Spends all the time on computer or video games Increasing involvement with unhealthy risk taking Self injury Weight loss/weight gain

21 When to Refer for Counseling Anytime a parent or child asks for a referral Moderate or severe depression with change in daily activities Suicidal ideation or intent Suspected substance abuse Loss of loved one, family discord, social isolation Self-injury

22 RISK ASSESSMENT 70% of adolescents are seen annually in primary care pediatric practice Teens are willing to talk about mental health issues Genetic factors play role in adolescent depression Depressed parent most potent risk factor Adverse life events contribute to early onset of depression

23 Keep Developmental Issues in Mind Recognize potential power of minor losses in life of a child Disturbances in mood, sleep, or appetite may be easier to discuss than peer relationships or school problems Chronic illness impacts teens differently

24 Tips for Parents of Teens Provide and encourage opportunities for healthy risk taking Eat dinner together at least 3 times a week Involve teens in decision-making Have as few non-negotiable rules as possible


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