You have probably been told or read somewhere that your teens rebellious behavior is normal. It’s part how they become their own person. You want to believe that but feel unsure you really should to let go.

Here are 3 steps to get you started so you can come to a better place with your teens regarding their growing independence:

  1. When there’s already been an altercation between you and your teen, let your teen know that you understand how they feel.
    • Acknowledge their feelings: “you must be angry at me for yelling at you”, “I’m sorry I grounded you yesterday and I know you must feel that I don’t understand why you … “, “I’m sorry I yelled at you for coming home late, did you not call me because you were afraid of me getting angry?”…etc
  2. Let them have a chance to say how they want to fix things.
    • When you see that they have really heard that you understand (look for physical sign of letting go tension), ask them for their inputs: “what do you think we should do next time?”, “how do you want to resolve our differences?”
  3. If you’re not comfortable with what they suggest, share your concerns but don’t sound like it’s a mandate and suggest alternatives.
    • Suggest alternatives that aim to increase their own self-reliance and self-responsibilities that include natural consequences. “I understand you like to hang out with your friends. If you really don’t want to go to school, you can get a job and pay rent (responsibilities/consequence)”, “I want to trust you can manage your own time, but is there a way you can help me build that trust one step at a time?”

You situation might be different and sometime when you have been stuck in the same loop, it’s hard to find a fresh way to communicate. If you need help, please call me at 650-397-1376 or email me at for a free 20-minutes phone consultation to explore possibility of parent coaching sessions.

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