Any relationship that involves communication remains difficult. When you say something, you don’t always know what the other is hearing or receiving. This remains valid for all human beings, but it is even more true for adolescents and parents. The adolescent in crisis is indeed at a crossroads. ” During this period, all the neurons of childhood are disappearing to make way for those of an adult, except that they are still immature. The teenager loses the carelessness, the reverie; we expect more in addition to things of him and therefore, as he does not yet have the capacities of an adult, he can live this period with difficulty. He can regularly perceive himself as in a kind of fog. And by extension, his parents too“, explains Myriam Goffard, Vice-President of the National Union of Practitioners of Relational Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis.
This step dispels the benchmarks of the whole family and can create conflicts . The child who is no longer one must make crucial study choices: face the demands of his teachers, be accountable to his parents. And all of this can be overwhelming.
For parents, we must first accept this transition, which can last a certain time depending on the adolescents and their personalities. First of all, do not get into conflict or confrontation all the time. But have the patience to repeat the principles to which we hold, because the repetition remains at the base of the pedagogy . Next, don’t play the “cool” parent or boyfriend.
The adolescent needs benchmarks, rules and we must not be afraid to enact them . And above all, do not feel guilty by considering yourself too harsh. Especially if their child pushes boundaries, doesn’t respect you, or doesn’t respect others more generally. Complacency must be ruled out at all costs.
“The benevolent frankness seems to me the best formula to define the behavior to be held for the parents during the period of adolescence”, continues Myriam Goffard. It is necessary to say the things, to value the small objectives achieved, without being too mothering , nor to err by excess of authoritarianism . Parents are the foundation of a teenager, he must be able to lean on them, so the base must be solid.
In the event that communication and dialogue are broken , do not hesitate to involve a third person that the teenager appreciates. An uncle, a cousin, as long as it’s an adult. Often, it is this third person who will re-establish the dialogue since, by listening to both parties, he will act as a mediator to calm things down. There are also assistance services for adolescents, such as the Maison des Adolescents. In any case, it is essential to be patient as a parent, because once again, the period can be longer or shorter depending on the case.