All parents worry about their teenagers. One thing that is a common concern for parents is abusive relationships. It can be a very sensitive subject to discuss with your teen. However, the effort is well worth it.
Even if you aren’t thinking your teen is involved in that kind of relationship, it is still very important for you to discuss the possibility of it occurring and what they should do if they ever encounter this kind of situation.
Here are several useful tips to help make discussing abusive relationships with your teen a bit easier to do.
1. Be honest and Open.
Teenagers and children really appreciate honesty. Children by nature are honest. So as parents, the more honest and open we are, the more positive our connections will be with them.
Find a convenient time and quiet spot to sit down and ask your teen about what their thoughts are about abusive relationships. You might be surprised with how serious and mature your teen’s response is on the topic.
Tell your child that the reason you want to discuss this with them is because of how much you care about them. You want to make sure they know where to get help if either someone they know or they ever encounter this kind of situation.
If you approach your teen in a caring and honest way, it lets them know that you are really on their side. Teenagers frequently struggle with this.
2. Get involved.
As kids get older, it becomes harder and harder to continue being a significant part of their life. By getting involved on a regular basis in your child’s life, picking up on any signs of an abusive relationship will be much easier.
Keep tabs on your teen’s school activities and talk with their teachers. Know who your child’s friends are as well as their parents.
If you can, remain close to your teen’s inner circle. You will have a better chance of staying in touch and knowing when as a parent you need to step in.
Another great way to keep connected with your child is to offer your house as a safe haven for your teen and also their friends. Of course this doesn’t mean you don’t have any rules or that you are a friend instead of a parent.
However, if you can provide a place to hang out in that is non-judgmental for your teenager and friends, you will have a closer look at their live and be more familiar with they individuals they spend lots of time with.
If you set firm but fair boundaries, this will tell everyone that there are rules, but they are very welcome in your home. If you provide plenty of food and fun activities like movie nights in addition to a bit of privacy, it will be a place that your teen and friends will want to hang out in.
3. Know When To Step in.
Abusive relationships are very serious. Any teen who gets involved in this kind of relationship is in a dangerous situation. If you have suspicions that your teen or a friend of theirs might be involved in an abusive relationship, you may need to take some action.
Talk to your teen, their friends and also other parents. Try to find out whatever you can regarding the situation. Then act quickly. A teen who is involved in this kind of relationship might resist help initially or even view the parent as the one who is bad. In this situation, the main thing that you need to focus on at the moment is making sure your teen is safe.
If it turns out your teenager has been part of an abusive relationship, you probably should get your child some counseling. This kind of trauma could last for many years. If you can get your teen into counseling early in the process, they can start to heal from the situation.