From Dr. Jane's Notebook

Communicating With Teenagers

Teenagers are a mystery in many families. Once our children reach this vulnerable and difficult period, we parents often feel lost. We get confused by our child's growing independence and often, by their anger. It is easy to lose rapport within the family and accept interpersonal distance. Bridging the gap between you and your teen offers a new challenge. Here are a few thoughts on the matter.

In my practice, I often see parents who experienced premarital pregnancies but who fail to provide their children with adequate sex education. I often work with parents who experienced drug problems in their youth, but who close their eyes to their childrens' drug and alcohol abuse. Closing our eyes and sealing our lips is not the way to maintain close relationships with our children.

Today's parents have grown up in a generation replete with lifestyle changes and personal growth. Many things have changed, but one tradition remains the same: parents look back on their growing years and hope that their children will not make the same mistakes they made. Our children need to know how we feel, what we've experienced, what we've learned... and that we love them!

ęCopyright, 1993, 1995, Jane R. Rosen-Grandon. All rights reserved.

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Last Updated October 17, 1998 by Gary M. Grandon, Ph.D.