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Do you have a teenager who is starting to drive you a little crazy?

Maybe a lot crazy?

All teens experience frustrating times as they mature. The growing up process is a messy, bumpy one and it takes patience, practicing new skills and a measure of self-control to get to the adult side of life.

All teenagers go through this process and all handle it in their own ways.

However, if your teen has become disrespectful and surly more than occasionally, she is asking for your help in navigating these growing-up waters.

How to handle a teenager who is in the throes of this process can be tricky. Take a look at the following parenting information, then scroll down and join me again and we'll explore this issue together.

Please help! How do I raise my teen or pre-teen?

Raising Kids Questions As a parent, do you have more questions than answers?

Back talk, defiance and disrespect do NOT have to be daily visitors in your home. Start by taking control now.

1. Read through the free short report "Raising Teens". Make sure you are covering the fundamentals in parenting your son or daughter.

IMPORTANT: Don't disregard this information if your child is not yet a teen. A huge secret to successful parenting is prevention. By reading this report and using the behavior log (explained in point #2) you'll be getting a jump on handling your growing child's needs today.

Believe me, solving a seven or ten year old's problems is a lot easier than solving a fifteen or seventeen year old's problems.

Behavior Chart 2. Print out our Behavior Log. Use it to keep track of your child's behavior for a week or two. Then you'll have a better idea of what you're really dealing with.

3. Is the situation with your teen still more than you know how to handle? Then take a deep breath and another step towards finding the right solution for you and your child. Head over to Empowering Parents where you will find an enormous amount of articles and discussion written by common sense experts and other parents who have been in the trenches, too. I have found this can really help.

As parents, we cannot control our children; however we do have tremendous influence. In truth, this is how it has always been, it is just that out of control teenagers will tell you you cannot control them!

How to handle teenagers who don't want to be handled.

I have four kids. Three are already adults, so we've done the teenage thing a few times. It is my firm conviction that teenagers really do want and need to be handled, no matter what they say to your face.

The trick is, though, a teen wants to be handled carefully, with confidence, respect, love and firmness. With an understanding of her own personal potential. By someone she trusts.

Gee, Mom or Dad, that would be you! Good news!

Here are two common mistakes parents understandably make when looking at how to handle teenager rebellion. I've made them myself. It helps to know that going to either extreme as a matter of course can make a teenager overly chafe against your authority.

1. Too much freedom too fast is too scary.

Of course, your teenager will never tell you that out loud. At least not in the moment. Teens are under enormous pressure these days to do it all and get it done yesterday.
  • Get good grades.
  • Be mature.
  • Look cool. Be sexy.
  • Be popular.
  • Learn history, pop trends, calculus, how to stay in your teachers' good graces, and everything that's on cable, facebook and the 'net.
  • Dress right.
  • Figure out what to do with the rest of your life.
  • Achieve!
  • Get a job.
  • Have fun.
  • Make your parents proud.
  • Text constantly.
  • Drive a car. With friends.
  • Have money.
  • Get ready for college.
  • Don't do drugs, alcohol, smoke or have sex. At least don't get caught doing them by the adults in your life.
  • Home chores.
  • Be happy with yourself.

Would you like every day to look like this for yourself? Not to mention that, as an adult, you've got years of experience and judgment to call upon that your teen does not.

As I'm sure you noticed, not all of those pressures are coming from the same places and certainly not all from sources that have your child's best interest at heart. Nonetheless, many of them are very real demands your average teen would like to succeed at, at least partially and even if only for appearance' sake.

Hey, you and I know the truth. This is a recipe for failure. No one can be all things to all people and yet that's exactly what this list reveals is the daily grind for our teens.

How to handle a teenager who is in over her head? Look, there is no unwritten parenting rule that says your teen has to be a part of this madness. In fact, as your son or daughter's parent, your job is to give them both the permission and the responsibility to sort through these new potential freedoms, discarding wrong choices and embracing right ones, in a reasonable, sane manner.

Look at it this way. If your teenager already knew how to handle this amount of freedom and decision-making, he would be living on his own, making his own way, and doing well, too. But he's not. He's not ready.

Teach your teenager to handle life; don't just throw him to the wolves.

Another thing. If you have been handling a teenager for some time who is frustrating and disrespectful, you are probably worn out. Here is an excellent article that addresses this very real issue of parenting. Gut Check: Shame and Anger: The Emotional Handcuffs of Parenting

How to handle teenagers - Mistake #2.

Give your teen no freedom. None. Isolate her. No chance to make mistakes that way. She'll be safe surrounded by your values and your protection.

Hm. That's a tempting thing to do as a parent, to be sure. If your teen has been seriously acting out, she probably does need some strong boundaries with firm consequences to help her get back on track. For a time, she may have actually earned no freedom.

The truth is, a teen in that position needs to connect the dots between privilege and responsibility. He needs to know that earning freedom is a wonderful thing - something to be treasured so you don't lose that freedom.

Take another look at that same list of teenage demands above. That's a reality list. There are positive and negative issues represented there. Frankly, your teen MUST learn how to navigate it.

So take a close, honest look at your son or daughter, consider their present level of maturity and help them rise to the next level. Some teens want to go too fast and need to be reigned in a bit while still learning to explore the world with guidance. Other teens feel overwhelmed and need to be carefully pushed a bit or even walk closer with you to develop the confidence they need.

How to handle teenager needs and wants is challenging! Tough love for teenagers can be a messy, confusing, frustrating process for both parent and teen. It also is an exhilerating process filled with adventure and bittersweet joy.

That's called growing up and you have a front row seat with your teenager. Gather all your resources: education, mentors, prayer and courage and work as a team with your teen, not as their best friend, but as their number one guide and first class supporter.

If you're having difficulty handling your teenager and you want to know what parenting program I can recommend, that would be The Total Transformation program, hands down.

Does Total Transformation work? In my understanding, it has a good chance of improving many family situations IF a parent works it diligently. Part of why this particular program has a measure of success is because it supports parents extremely well. I simply cannot overestimate how important I have found it is to get trusted support while parenting!

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