Anyone who has or has in the past had teens living in their home know how difficult it can be. Although my kids have not yet hit that age, I have a little experience thanks to our niece who lived with us for a brief period during her tumultuous teen years.
As a CPS worker, many of the cases that I investigated involved 'out of control' teenagers. I always thought teens got a bad rap. Yeah, they do things that we don't agree with or understand, can be mouthy and disruptive, but I always felt and still do that raising teens requires parents to add some specialized tools to their parenting toolbox.
One of the most important things that parents can do is to foster ongoing communication with their teen. As parents, we know what awaits our kids in the real world. As former teens, we know what teens worry about -- or do we? Enter Vanessa Van Petten. Vanessa is an author, entrepreneur and life trainer for teens. Her website, Teens Today with Vanessa Van Petten, offers a wealth of information for those who are trying to understand their teen.
All parents should check out her post What do teens today really worry about? The top 5 issues revealed. While the list may not shock some, consider what kinds of things would have made your top five as a teen. Consider also that all of these areas of concern hold big price tags. By that I mean that poor choices in these areas can have devastating effects on their future. So, be sure to check out the links on her post as they focus on ways to encourage and foster communication. Good stuff. Enough said.