I don’t know about you, but I am always seeking teen parenting advice. I like to discuss where others have failed or how they think they could have done things differently with their teen, so I can try my best to not make the same mistakes.
I am one that asks a lot of questions and make notes. That is why I believe it is so important to have a mentor that has the same morals and values that you do. I am sure there is someone who would be honored if you asked them if you could take up an hour of their time several times a year to discuss their teen parenting experience. I have found several close friends at church or a homeschool support group that love to share their tips and resources with me. It’s a blessing to our family.
I have 3 teenagers as I share with you the mistakes that I have either made or I strive to overcome. Parenting is tough in today’s world, and there is no perfect handbook out there. Trust me, if there was one, I would be promoting it like crazy, but the truth is…..I am no expert and continue to make mistakes daily. I am praying that by the time my 6th child becomes a teenager, I just might have this parenting thing down. Yeah, right!.
11 Mistakes That Teen Parents Tend To Make
- Don’t try to be your teens best friend – your teen doesn’t need another friend. They have plenty. They need someone they can respect and learn the joys and sorrows of this world. This doesn’t mean you can’t have fun or a few laughs, but you are responsible for being their discipline companion and holding them accountable for their successes and failures. God didn’t place your child in your life so he can be your “bestie.”
- Pick your battles – Ouch! I am working so hard on picking the issues to combat that are more life threatening or detrimental to their salvation. I try really hard not to worry about if they have purple hair or not. I am kidding on the purple hair, but you get the drift.
- Don’t outsource your teens spiritual life – it is the parents responsibility to teach their children about the Lord. It’s not your youth pastor. Talk about their spiritual life with them daily.
- Don’t pray over their teen enough – we as parents must be praying over our children daily. Satan is there waiting for an attack. Our children need to hear us praying for them, and not just before meals. I am working on this.
- Do not spend enough quality time with teen – unless you homeschool there tends not be a lot of quality time available due to work, school, and extra curricular activities, so this will require an effort. Mark it on the calendar, and make a big deal over the special time. Don’t just assume your teen doesn’t want to hang out with you. I am cool, ya know! lol!
- Don’t make church/youth group activities a priority – how are we suppose to expect our children to be spiritual sound if we don’t take them and participate in church activities on a regular basis? We must set the example by making church functions and fellowship a priority. This doesn’t mean you have to participate in every event, but have a relationship with your church family. My children know not to make any plans on Wednesday nights because it’s youth night and AWANAS. Sundays are designated for worship. Don’t be a bench warmer.
- Neglect teaching teens life skills and hospitality tips – My children have regular chores and I expect them to be completed in excellence before they are to have free time. You are doing your children a disservice if you do not teach them how to take care of a home, yard, and car. Children need to learn the importance of fellowship with other believers and outsiders.
- Forget Actions Speaks louder than words – I am so guilty of this! I need to practice what I preach!
- Ignore the oblivious – if my child starts getting an attitude, lying, or not coming home on time, I know I need to check out the root of the problem. I must be attentive to my teen.
- Lecture rather than discuss – so many times it’s just easier and takes less time if I just say, NO! However, I know my teens are more likely to respect my decision or stand on an issue if I make time discussing the reason behind it. Of course, some things are just no, and don’t require a reason, but I try to be sensitive to discussion.
- Don’t stress the importance of righteous character – in our society today, morals are close to non-existence. Anything goes attitude is the norm, but I must instill biblical character traits and practice them daily with them. Regular Bible Reading is a must.
Probably the biggest struggle that I tend to get bogged down with is forgetting that actions speak louder than words and picking my battles with my teens. We all have our struggles and we all will make mistakes during our parenting. However, I must be willing to repent and ask God and my teens for forgiveness on a daily basis.
Thank God for his new mercies everyday!
Do you have any teen parenting advice to share with us in the comment section? I would love to hear your tips or your struggles.