When we have kids, we envision their lives being happy and worry-free. Sadly, reality doesn't always look like our plans. Even the best parents can find themselves with teenaged children who are unhappy and struggling at home and at school. If you have a teenage child who's struggling, here's some advice on how you can help them to get back on track.
Identify The Problem
While it's true that a lot of teenagers have issues, different teens struggle with different things. Some teenagers may not necessarily be dealing with mental illness, but simply managing stress poorly. These kids might not necessarily need professional intervention. However, other teens may be struggling with an actual mental illness. In this case, they may need the help of a North Tampa behavioral health specialist.
Consider Your Actions
If your teen is struggling, it might not necessarily be your "fault," but there might be things you're doing that are worsening the situation. For example, if a child is struggling in school, many parents will yell and lecture in an attempt to force their kids to start making better educational choices. While this sounds like simple tough love, most kids struggling in school just become even more disinterested in their academics when they're yelled at for their poor performance. Instead, you want your struggling teen to see you as an ally, not an enemy.
Communication Is Key
Teens don't typically like to have long and personal conversations with their parents. This is an age where many kids feel inclined to hide things from their parents, not share their innermost thoughts with them. Even if it's difficult to get your child to open up to you, you should always be communicating with your teen. When kids feel like they can talk to their parents without the fear of being judged or yelled at, they're generally a lot happier and more confident at school.
Raising a teenager is difficult. However, you're not a bad parent just because your teen is struggling. Identify the problem, resist the urge to yell and show your teen that you're on their side.