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Parenting Troubled Teens: Self-Control

Selfi-control: A little over a week ago, Adam provided us with three great insights for parenting troubled, angry teens. Before reading this article, I encourage you to please read the first article about managing aggressive teens. As a recap, the first three points were 1. The parent should always control themselves.2. The parent needs to recognize the signs of potential aggressiveness in their teen.3. If a parent is the source of the problem, they need to remove themselves. So what does it mean, that a “parent should always control themselves”? It sounds simple and self-explanatory, but isn’t there more to this simple truth? Or, am I just missing the point? 

Parenting Troubled Teens Requires Parental Self-Control

 I asked Adam if he could elaborate on the first point being discussed. I asked questions such as: 1. The parents are the boss, why can’t they react to their teen’s angry behaviors?2. What are the repercussions if parents do not control themselves?3. How can a self-controlled parent calm an aggressive situation with their teen? So what is the point for parents practicing self control with their angry teen? Some of his answers are as follows. Adam said, “Controlling one’s self IS the point. A parent cannot control the actions of their teen. That’s an ever common problem. The parent attempts to control the behavior of the teen by making it worse (yelling, aggressive behavior, grounding, belittling, etc). Behavior modification is most effective when it comes from behavior modeling. In other words, the parent MUST set the tone of the conversation. Realizing that the object is to get through the “moment” in a civil, caring and loving way. Even if the outcome is not desirable. With each “modeled” moment, the teen will see new responses to the ongoing situation.

If you would like to know more about therapeutic boarding school and other residential programs for troubled teens, please contact a family counselor at Zion Educational Systems for guidance.  To get started click the button below!

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