The teen years often intimidate parents due to the infamous rebellious phase that all teenagers supposedly go through. The thing is, not all adolescents become the dreaded rebellious teen, at least not at the same level. Our society seems to have molded this image of a rebellious teen with dyed hair, multiple piercings, and weird fashion sense. We’re not saying that this doesn’t happen; however, teenage rebellion could actually manifest in different ways and at varying degrees. No matter where your child falls on the ‘rebellion meter’, it is important that you try, as best as you can, to understand where they’re coming from so you can come up with the proper way to deal with it.
Reasons Why Teens Rebel
Adolescents are undergoing a series of changes, that’s a fact. The prefrontal cortex is developing during the teenage years. This part of the brain is said to be the thinking cap and judgment center of the brain. This means that as teenagers develop their own ideas and ideals in life, they also see the world and everything in it in a different light. This often results in them comparing what they have and who they are to what they come to believe as the ideal version of things and people. This is where the curiosity broadens and the urges become stronger.
Then there are the hormones. Hormones shouldn’t be blamed entirely for teens “acting out”. However, the changes that teenagers undergo during this crucial time of their development could lead to rash decisions, impulsive actions, mood swings, and unpredictable behavior.
Teenagers struggle to fit in and be accepted by their peers. When they can’t resist peer pressure, it often leads to them making changes to the way they dress, speak, or act. Eventually, this may lead to harmful habits and dangerous situations.
Teenagers also may have this craving for attention. This may not only apply to their peers, but parents as well. They want attention and when they don’t get it, they often resort to seeking attention the wrong way and by the wrong people. When parents recognize bad behaviors more often than little achievements, teens tend to choose to do those things since they know those could get them noticed.
Identification & Freedom
Teenagers are in the “who I am?-phase” of their lives. They are struggling to figure their true identity as well as their purpose. As they struggle to understand themselves, they also want to have more freedom to do things their way. Oftentimes, teenagers feel that their parents are trying to control their lives. They may feel trapped and frustrated because they want to try and do new things to figure out who they really are. Yet, they feel they couldn’t really do it because “adults” have too many rules.
What Parents Can Do To Help Their Teen
It’s crucial to establish open communication lines between you and your child from the get-go. This way, when your child reaches the difficult adolescent years, there will be a greater chance that you would be able to reach out to them. Talk with your kids, spend time with them, and get to really know them.
As they struggle in their teenage years, you must be there to guide and help them understand things including:
- That they are unique and that they do not have to be like everyone else. Teach them the beauty in uniqueness
- It’s important to accept yourself and love who you are.
- The more freedom they have, the more responsibilities they will have.
- That you are there, as their parent, to guide and help them.
Teenage rebellion, especially when it falls on the extreme side, is a serious issue that parents must carefully deal with. In such instances, a rebellious teen is like a ticking bomb that can explode at any time. Improper handling or outright dismissal of a teenager’s rebellion may lead to irreparable damage to the parent-child relationship as well as to the child themself. Parents must therefore do everything in their capacity to understand their child’s behavior and deal with it in the best way possible.