Is your teen son or daughter driving you over the edge? You are not alone! Parents of troubled teens around the world are realizing, that because of today's stressful life, they need help dealing with a son or daughter who is making poor decisions. There is help available if you know where to look.
While it can be devastating to learn that your troubled teen has fallen into the wrong crowd or has begun to make decisions that
will destroy their lives, it is not something to be embarrassed about or to try to hide from others. It is a time to take action!
Is your girl, boy, youth or teen struggling with depression, failing in school, abusing drugs? Are they more and more defiant? Do they exhibit low self-esteem, lack of motivation or poor family relationships?
Foir example, warning signs will be obvious when your child is at risk. They may be close to dropping out of school because they regularly fail classes. They are more and more involved with violence or use of drugs or alcohol. In extreme cases, they may attempt suicide or engage in other dangerous or self-defeating behaviors. Common sense is the rule. Parents always know when behavior has gone beyond normal but many parents choose to ignore the signs because, in a sense, it means they have failed as parents. Nothing could be further from the truth.
While abusive parents certainly can be balmed for their teen acting out in negative and destructive ways, most parents are not responsible. Such bad behavior is a compilation of environment, life experience, and failed expectations. With the exception of child abuse, the reasons are numerous and not easy to uncover.
In extreme cases, some specialized services like group homes for teens may be the answer. These homes are designed to deal with troubled girls and boys. Group homes are a very new form of intervention. There are also wilderness programs for troubled teens, camps, boot camps, and teen boarding schools.
The main aim of these programs is to take troubled teens away from their normal environment and get to the bottom of the behavior and, hopefully, change it.
Christian Boarding Schools and boot camps are proving to be of major help to these struggling boys and girls. The most important thing that you can do as the parent is decide which type of program, facility, or organization is best suited to deal with the issues facing your teen. Make sure you do your homework before choosing one for your loved child.
How does negative behavior take root in your teen?
Teenage years are the years between childhood and adulthood. You remember those difficult years, right? In this period we found an unknown changing in our body and mind. Your teen, in spite of video games and iPod's, is still a normal teen like we once were, struggling to find their place and how to relate to the world. It can be frightening for them so they band together with other teens to cope. This where the trouble can begin.
When teens have less communication with parents they become a troubled teen because the advice they are getting is coming from sources that feed their base emotional need for acceptance and love. These sources are not always positive. This can set up a confrontation. When the behavior becomes so negative, we try to step in to correct it. But, without the right approach, a thoughtful approach, parent and teen engage in a battle of wills. The end of such battles is usually not a good ending for either side.
Children with abnormal behavior disorders are simply incapable of comprehending the consequences that may occur from an action. They do not think beyond the moment of the action. If you remember your teenage years and some of the “fun” things you did without thinking, you know what I mean. Many times those “fun” things had negative consequences, too, remember?
Knowing the correct intervention can help a child manage their behavior in a positive way when seimilar actions present themselves in the future. So, what is the correct intervention? This will depend on the level of negative behavior your teen exhibits.
Many parents choose to pursue interventions that address the symptoms only. Attacking the symptoms in the wrong way will drive the destructive behaviors underground, only to resurface at a later date. This approach is a waste valuable time and resources and may even make things worse. You should seek out professional advice but do it without your teen. Find out the best techniques available to you before attempting an approach.
We have mentioned a few programs for the most troubled teens but there are other, less drastic, measures that can be taken. Find the program that fits you and your teen. No one knows your situation better than you.
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Jim DeSantis is an Internet Publisher and retired Pastoral Counslor who provides access to resources for parents and troubled teens. Visit Jim's blog at www.answersplus.info - click "Teen Parenting" in the sidebar.
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