Your Teen’s Behavior is Changing for the Worst. What Happens Now?

There are many red flags that indicate troubled teen behavior. Declining grades, a combative attitude, becoming more isolated, hanging around with “a bad crowd,” and trouble with the law are just a few of them. Recognizing troubled teen behavior is a first positive step in helping your teen. The next one is perhaps confronting them and discussing their behavior in efforts to find a solution. This may – or may not – be as easy as it sounds.

As a parent, resorting to the many online programs for teens and other trouble teen programs are proven resources for guidance and helpful information. However, it’s always best to discuss your teen’s behavior with them in efforts to narrow down the issues (or situations) at hand. Here are three initial steps parents can take when discussing their troubled teen’s behavior.

Make it Known you are Aware of their Behavior

An article on psychcentral.com recommends you let your teen know you are aware of their changing behavior. Also, let them understand that they can talk to you and openly share their feelings without consequence (depending on the situation). After all, you’re just trying to better understand their behavior and find a solution. Additionally, according to www.helpguide.org, finding common ground between you and your teen is also important, as it can potentially create a stronger bond. Once they feel comfortable and interested in communicating with you in peace, they may want to talk more about other topics.

Always Maintain Control

Dealing with a trouble teen is never easy especially if they possess defensive emotions. When their tempers do flare or they experience sudden erratic behavior, simply keep your cool and don’t respond in kind, suggests an article on www.childmind.org. Try counting to ten or take a deep a breath (or two) before replying. This can possibly prevent a one-sided heated discussion from turning into a full-on argument. Or, simply walk away from the situation until both of you have calmed down. Cooler minds often prevail.

Seek Out Professional Advice

If discussions or other diplomatic approaches are not effective with your troubled teen and problems are escalating, there are many online teen programs and trouble teen services to resort to. Your family physician is another ideal place to start. By explaining your teen’s troubled behavior, they may refer you to family or teen counselling/therapy, which may rectify their behavior and find a long-term solution.

Quite often, there’s not just one easy way to help your troubled teen, but finding a solution sooner than later can mean a more harmonious family life and more happiness for your teen over the long term.

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