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My son was embarrassed by me and said, ‘I don’t want people to think we came together,’ so I responded in kind

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Being a teenager is like riding a roller coaster full of ups and downs. For parents, watching their kids go through these teen years can be just as challenging.

It’s a time when kids are trying to find out who they are, which often means seeking more freedom and sometimes clashing with their parents.

One mom shared her story of how her teenage son didn’t want to be seen with her or her husband. He even asked to be dropped off a block away from his destination just to avoid being seen getting out of their car. In an effort to make him understand how his actions felt, she decided to turn the tables and act the same way.

This experience is a common one for many parents who are navigating the tricky waters of raising teenagers. Here are some tips that might help if you find yourself in a similar boat:

Don’t take it personally: Remember, all of us were teenagers once. This phase is full of emotional ups and downs. Your child’s behavior isn’t a reflection of your parenting.

Avoid conflict: It’s normal for teens to sometimes use harsh words. Instead of responding with anger, it might be better to step back and cool off before continuing the conversation.

Give them space, but show you care: Teens often push back if they feel smothered. Show them you care and want to spend time with them, but let them set the terms for when and where.

Talk with other parents: You’re not alone in this. Connecting with other parents who are also raising teenagers can provide support and new strategies.

Try to understand their perspective: Think back to when you were their age. This can help you see things from their point of view and remind you that this stage won’t last forever.

Being a parent to a teenager isn’t easy, but with patience and understanding, you can help guide your child through these turbulent years. And remember, this phase is just as important for their growth as it is for your growth as a parent.