Do you believe you must have an answer immediately? Bad move. There are so many reasons to put on the brakes and wait until you're calm. 1) You may not follow through. Decisions based on negative emotions are often extreme and you most likely won't implement. 2) If you don't implement, your child won't take you seriously; they are hearing empty threats. 3) If you do follow through, you may regret it. The punishment doesn't fit the crime. Your teen may grudgingly comply, or not comply, and make you miserable either way. 4) Your teen learns... not much that's helpful. The point of consequences is not to punish and deprive. It's to help your teen learn personal responsibility. 5) You're demonstrating unregulated emotions instead of thoughtful decision-making. They will take that into future relationships and it’s not pretty. The next time you find yourself reacting strongly, stop or even backtrack. Most decisions can wait - an hour, a day, a week. Show your kids what thoughtful, calm, decision-making looks like and how it contributes to healthy interactions and relationships. They’re watching.
P.S. To bring out the best in your teen and your relationship, click here to get your free guide, "10 Things to Avoid Saying to Your Teen".
Fern Weis is a certified life coach who learned that caring and good intentions are not enough in parenting. In fact, they are often the problem! Fern supports parents of teens and young adults who are going through difficult situations, including addiction recovery. She helps parents release guilt, end enabling and confidently prepare their children to thrive through life's challenges. Her articles are featured in Thrive Global, Medium, Motherly, The Teen Mentor, and Bergen County Moms.
Learn more about coaching and classes at www.fernweis.com. And then download your free guide, "Five Powerful Steps to Get Your Teen to Talk." For information on Family Recovery programs, visit www.familyrecoverypartners.com.