Parenting: Where is That Manual? – Part 2

In our first blog in this series, we talked about parenting with consistency and integrity. I’d like to expand a little on what your child perceives as respectable.

As children grow into middle school years, they begin to understand their parents are not the all-knowing, perfect folks they’ve believed them to be in elementary school.

Now this isn’t because we all of the sudden mess up as parents. In fact, it is because your child’s maturing mind is grasping just how separate they are from you and with that objectivity, just enough unsound judgment to be irritated by your sudden lack of knowledge and ability to fix everything.

Take a breath. All is not lost. Understanding where your child is developmentally may help us as parents to not ship them off to that island until they are 19, but instead to develop tolerance for their developing sense of right/wrong and raging hormones.

However, it needs to be pointed out that at this stage…

Your integrity is at stake, and so is their respect for you. 

If you say you’re going to do something…DO it. Sounds pretty simple, but often we are unaware of the many ways we undermine ourselves as parents. Lacking integrity to follow up or follow through with our word is one of the ways we may do this.

Children remember when parents promise but don’t deliver. Be cautious and intentional with your promises. If promises are consistently delivered, they carry more weight, producing more respect. 

If you would like a resource for creating rules and developing consequences for your teens, Parenting with Love and Logic may be the read you need. If you need additional parenting help, or feel overwhelmed with your teens, please contact a professional counselor.

In Part 3, we will cover how to handle disappointments (your own and your kids) and communication with your teens.

Written by: Allison Wray