SELF HELP RESOURCE - Parenting / Teens and Youth


In many homes, the constant complaint is "My teenager won't talk to me", creating pressure not only on you but also on your teen to communicate, which may end up backfiring. The best thing you could do is develop good communication and quality time when your child is younger. The time you take to listen with interest when your younger child talks nonstop will pay off when your child reaches the teen years. During the difficult years ahead, even if there are periods of non-communication, you'll still have a basically good relationship and your teens are likely to want to keep it that way.

Begin to let go

At every stage through childhood you need to encourage independence. By adolescence your child will be ready for the greater freedom they crave. Gradually allow your child, greater independence, making it clear that freedom is tied to responsible behavior. For instance, if you allow him to come home later, but find that he has gone to a place that's out of bounds, then for the next week he should be expected to come home earlier.

Peer pressure

Friendships are very much an important aspect of the teen years. Understanding the nature of peer influence can help support youth as they enter into this period and follow the path towards close friendships that are hallmarks of adolescence. Do not belittle your child's friends but do talk about peer pressure and help your teen realise that sometimes she must be willing to stand up for her own values and views.

Physical Changes

Prepare your child for the physical changes to be expected at puberty in both sexes. Since some girls mature as early as 9 or 10, a girl needs to be told about menstruation by the age of 9 or so. The first menstruation can be traumatic, if the child is unprepared. Discuss it in a matter of fact manner.

On average, boys begin going through puberty a little later than girls, usually around age 10 or 11. But they may begin to develop sexually or have their first ejaculation without looking older or developing facial hair first.


Creating an atmosphere of honesty, mutual trust and respect is necessary. Facilitating, encouraging and creating an environment for teenagers to talk openly about problems could lay the foundation for talking with the child when struggles and conflicts emerge during these difficult years.

Latest Comments

avneetkc on 23 Nov 2020, 16:54 PM

Although we live in the 21st century, sex-education is something that is still lacking in India, and most other countries. When the reliable sources fail to communicate their message, teenagers turn to unreliable sources such their peers or the internet for knowledge about the same. The same way, if the parents talk to their children about puberty and secondary sexual changes in an open, non-tabooed manner, it would go a long way in helping their teens understand and accept the changes that they would be eventually going through.
- Avneet Kaur

kumarvineet83 on 22 Aug 2019, 17:10 PM

I believe it can be done by any of the parents or both together, all that matters is the comfort level between u and ur Kids. how openly u talk and address the issue.

sophiaa on 13 May 2015, 10:02 AM

I need to talk to my 12 year old son about sex. How do I do it. Is it best done by the father or mother?