Adolescence is a stage of life marked by rebellion or, at the very least, by the obvious distance between the young people who cross it, on the one hand, and the adults who care for or supervise it, on the other hand. . This makes conflicts very frequent, friction between two very different value systems, unrelated priorities and, in general, complicated habits of association.
In this article we will see how to deal with adolescent behavior problems based on simple psychological principles also used in therapy and behavior modification programs in general.
Tips for Managing Adolescent Behavior Problems
Apply these educational and parenting guidelines for dealing with the misconduct of a teenage son or daughter, keeping in mind that you should tailor these tips to your family’s unique circumstances and the young person’s way of being.
1. Identify the problem
The first step is to put in words the problem to be solved. Are you spending too much time playing video games? Don’t do your homework? Does he answer badly when you ask him things? Leaving open the question of what is wrong usually gives rise to a lot of mistakes, so it is important to go through this step of analyzing the situation which, on the other hand, does not usually take too long.
2. Detect the aspects of your life where you need it.
Observe the adolescent’s priorities carefully. Don’t take anything for granted when you consider your tastes and interests (very common among parents who have poor communication with their children is to assume that they are interested in what generally interests them most of young people this age).
Once you’ve done that, stop and think about which areas of your life you need the most. This way, you will know where to start when negotiating for compliance with future rules of conduct.
3. Apply the rules of behavior
It is important for the pupil or teenager to feel that there is a before and an after of the application of this set of rules, because those which existed before were not respected. This gives legitimacy to the new system of rules of conduct.
Outraged, the implications of complying and not complying should be explained, And take advantage of the things we learned in the previous point: what can we offer you in greater quantity if you do it right? And what are we going to start offering less in the event of non-compliance?
4. Don’t threaten punishment
In general, it is not advisable to bet on the path of punishment; adolescents see it as a confirmation that they should not strive to please their parents, who are generally seen as people too different from them to aspire to meet their expectations.
Punishment usually alienates the young person who suffers from it, increasing their hostility towards the person who imposed the punitive measure.. When used, they should be alone in dealing with very harmful behavior, and always provide an explanation that clearly shows the reason for the situation.
5. Show your satisfaction with their progress
Congratulations on your progress, that you notice that what he does has an immediate impact on your attitude towards him and it also increases their self-esteem. It is useless to hide that we are satisfied with what he achieves, in any case we withdraw the incentives to continue.
6. Apply all of the above consistently
As much as possible, avoid contradicting, radically varying the rules of behavior and generally being arbitrary. in the way you define the rules to follow. If you do, you will show that none of these measures are effective enough or make sense and therefore no one should take them seriously.
Are you looking for professional help for your teenager?
If you live in the north of Madrid and you are the parent of a teenager who has adopted problematic behaviors, we invite you to contact our team of psychotherapy professionals at the center. Majadahonda psychologists, based in Majadahonda and Villanueva de la Cañada.
Going through a psychotherapy process allows young people to better manage their problem management, and the advice of our team of psychologists allows families to adapt well to new parenting strategies to facilitate this change in behavior.
If you want to know more about what we offer, you can find more information about Psychologists-Majadahonda by clicking here.
- Danzer, G. (2014). Multidimensional family therapy in theory and practice. Child and Youth Services 35 (1), pages 16 to 34.
- Dorn LD; Office FM (2011). Puberty and its extent: a decade in review. Adolescence Research Journal. 21 (1): pages 180 to 195.
- Larson, R. and Wilson, S. (2004). Adolescence through place and time: globalization and the evolution of pathways to adulthood. In R. Lerner and L. Steinberg Handbook of Adolescent Psychology. New York: Wiley.
- Ramírez, MA (2005). Parents and Child Development: Parenting Practices. Valdivia: Educational studies.