- by Dr Gowher Yusuf
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- Feb 09 2017
How do you talk to your teens?
Trust your teens and take them seriously, and they will step up to the plate, carry the torch, face the challenge, and do their share successfully under your wise mentorship and guidance.
- Stay focused, control your emotions, and deal with the issue in a comprehensive way while staying calm. Controlling our emotions and being calm while we are discussing issues with our youth is key to the success of the discussion. If a person is angry and emotional, It will put the teen on thr defensive and she/he may not open up or even hear what the other person is saying. As such, it is important to train ourselves to be calm, not agitated, and focused. It is also important to get to the bottom of the issue and think about a comprehensive solution rather than just shouting and yelling at the young person and telling him/her as some parents do: “How dare you think about such a thing?!!!
- Closeness during discussion: is an indication that we ares concerned about our teen and his affairs. It is an indication that we values; we are interested in helping him to get over his weakness and find a solution for his problems. Such action will bring comfort to this young person and make him feel that the we are making a genuine effort to listen to him with an open mind and provide him the best advice. It is important to understand this point and as parents we should try our best to practice it. Rather than shouting at the young person from afar, it is better to ask him/her to come closer to us and discuss the issue with him/her in a very calm and ojective way.
- Use of dialogue: We should not lecture our teen or instruct her directly with what she should do and shouldn’t do. Instead, we should engage her in a very constructive dialogue. The use of dialogue in discussion is a very effective way of getting the message across and making the person feel that she contributed positively to the final solution. It also takes away the feeling of guilt that a person may have, particularly when a large group of people are around and witnessing the discussion.
- Reasoning and explaining: Our faith is logical and all the orders of the Almighty are for our own benefit. As such, there is a logical explanation and reason for every prohibition and for every permitted and allowed act. Scholars explained these reasons for us in a clear way. It is important for all parents to learn and understand these reasons clearly. This will help them to support their arguments when they dialogue with their teens and try to convince them to do or not to certain things. Teen and youth like to understand the reasons behind instructions. It is not enough to tell them to do something because they have to -------. That doesn`t help. They are faced with many questions from peers and need answers that make sense and that they can use when they discuss with peers at school or friends in their neighborhood.
- Use of examples that the teen can understand and relate to: Using examples makes the message a person is trying to communicate very clear.
- Touch the heart and soul : We should talk to them in a soft and gentle manner. We should n`t yell or shout at them. We should comfort him and continue our dialogue with him until he is convinced that he shouldn`t commit such an act. The mercy and gentleness pouring from our mouth should be very eloquent and convincing dialogue that should touch anyone`s heart and soul.
- Gentleness and expressing genuine care: Expressing genuine care and mercy no doubt will have a positive impact on our teen’s feelings and will help greatly in comforting him. Parents can nourish their relationship with their teens and youth and strengthen their bonds with them with a sprinkle of gentelness and a touch of genuine care.
- Not giving in to the culture`s social norms: This specific lesson needs a bit of elaboration. It is a very important lesson for all parents. A great majority of parents respond to events in their children`s lives spontaneously without thinking. They repeat certain patterns that they learned from their own experiences or their cultural bacgrounds. It is important to note here that not all cultural practices we use are good. It is our duty, as parents, not to blindly follow our ethnic practices without ensuring that they don`t contradict our values.
- Respect your teen: Respect is a very important quality and we are supposed to respect everyone irrespective of their age, color, ethnic background, or gender.
- Parents usually require their children to treat them with respect: how-ever, they themselves may not show much repect to their kids. Dealing with our children in a respectful way is a key for them to learn respect. After all, modeling is the most effective method of parenting. It is unrealistic to expect respect rom our children whn urselves do not show respect in the way we deal with them.
- Making a pledge with your teen: Such treatment will no doubt make him feel the seriousness of the matter and will elevate his self esteem and help in making him astrong and confident Adult. This treatment also will contribute positively to the emotional development of your teen and make him a mature and responsible person who can carry out duties, fulfill commitments, and repect his agreements with others
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