Embrace this thought for a second. As your teen’s childhood ends and he enters puberty, your opinions start to mean nothing to him. Well, he would still like to make you proud, but his peers’ opinions are what he will take most to heart.
Around 12 years of age, children tend to pull back and seem to retreat into their shells. And as they grow to become more individualistic, the most important concern parents have is getting their children to talk to them.
Why teenagers don’t share:
As their physiological and cognitive functions develop, teens begin to develop the ability to think abstractly. They’re bursting with information about the exciting life that’s happening around them. But, they fear judgment and repercussions from their parents for divulging too much of what they’re finding out.
How to engage children in conversations:
Create rules around dinner tables and cars. “No phones, no distractions.”
Share your own experiences as teenagers and what you loved and what you didn’t appreciate as much.
The secret to getting teens to talk:
Teens do well when they don’t have to look you in the eye directly. The best place for such type of conversations is outside the home. Top places for those kind of candid conversations are:
Don’t sit in front of them to ask, “So tell me, how was your day?”