Tuesday 6 December 2022

3 Tips for Raising Respectful Teenagers

**Collaborative Post**

AD: Children go through many changes during adolescence, and it can make them feel like a handful to deal with as they navigate their way through the changes and all of the emotions that come with them. It often makes for difficult conversations, mood swings and trying to find balance as they are not yet an adult nor a young child. While we’ve all been there, times have changed. The issues that we once faced aren’t so much of an issue and there are totally new ones that we might not quite understand, which can often make our own teens feel like we cannot relate. 

But as parents our job isn't always to relate, sometimes it is to be there to support, to listen and most importantly to help. It will mean everyone will need to find new ways to navigate issues but the important thing is that you all work through it together to create a respectful, trustworthy environment. We’ve been speaking to an independent boarding school in London for tips on raising a respectful teenager in today’s day and age.

Social Media

Now that your child’s a teenager, they will have the option to create their own social media profiles. They will be able to connect with others and share content online. While it seems harmless, it’s important that children are made aware of its dangers and how to stay safe online. There’s the issue of stranger danger, identity theft and potentially causing offence in what they post. You can help them to get around these issues by teaching them about online privacy and how to limit their account access so that only those who they allow can view their content. 

It’s also advisable for children to only add those that they know in real life and think carefully about what they post. You can teach them about sensitive information and what is deemed to be oversharing. Reminding them that once information or images get put onto the internet, they are often there to stay, even if they do delete them so only put out things they are happy to stay out there forever and for everyone to see. 

Dealing with Difficult Emotions

It’s not all about social media though, it’s also about how they interact with others. Children experience confusing feelings and emotions during their teenage years and especially as they go through puberty and have a whole range of different hormones and changes happening. They may even go through their first ever heart break. You will need to be there for them during this time and ensure that they have healthy coping mechanisms in place so that they can deal with them in the right way. Feeling stressed or anxious is normal, especially when a teen. What’s not okay is lashing out at others. This is a great time to think respect, and about giving our children the same respect as we would hope for back, they are no longer babies and deserve to be listened too and spoken too kindly and with respect. Hopefully seeing this means they will reciprocate and talk to you with respect too. 

Techniques like mindfulness calm the body and mind, making these feelings a little more manageable. Don't try to "solve" their issues, this often isn't what your teen is looking for, they are actually just looking for someone to be present, someone to listen and feel like they have someone on side, so don't think "problem solver" just think about being there for them. 


No matter how old they get, they are still your child and it’s normal for you to still worry about them. Until they are 18 years old, it’s your duty to ensure that they are safe and well which is why it’s important that there are still boundaries in place. Helping them understand where you’re coming from and talk to them whilst reinforcing your love. How you deliver these rules will play a big part in how they are received too, don't dictate the rules like they are babies. Explain the rules, why they are in place and explain that everyone in the household follows them to make things run smoother and the family happier.

That way the rules don't feel babyish as they as simply house rules for everyone to follow for the smooth running of the house. If teens see parents following the same rules they will likely follow suit as they will just feel like more of the running of the house and family than strict rules in place only for them.

Ultimately raising a teenager is a bit of a rollercoaster ride, it will have its ups and downs but ultimately so worth it too. Teens are grown ups and becoming adults too so when you speak to them remember this and try to speak to them how you would like to be spoken back too, remember the respect as a word everyone should be considering. These are just a few ways in which you can raise a respectful child. For more parenting advice, check out the rest of my blogs.


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