Parents need to recognize the continued importance of their relationship with their adolescent. They should be careful not to confuse adolescents' development of independence with rejection of the relationship with parents.
Parents need to be available to their adolescents, remain supportive and be actively engaged in the negotiation of increased autonomy and self-reliance.
Parents need to anticipate that their adolescent will require more involvement and support during periods of transition, such as entry into high school. Parents should coach their adolescent in effective planning and management of this transition.
Parents need to support adolescents in their exploration of social norms by listening to their struggles for social approval and problems with peer pressure. Parents should discuss their own values and the reasons for limit setting, and should negotiate rules when appropriate.
Parents need to monitor involvement in potentially dangerous situations and work with their adolescent to ensure safety.
Parents must be careful not to disregard an adolescent's real emotional difficulties by assuming that these are due to physical or hormonal changes associated with their age.
Parents need to be careful not to dismiss problems in the adolescent-parent relationship as simply due to age, temperament or other child characteristics. Both parties are responsible for and contribute to the quality of the relationship.
Parents need to recognize the continued importance of their relationship with their adolescent, despite their child's increased interest in and time spent with peers.
Parents need to be aware of and monitor their adolescent's involvement with various peer groups and their activities at school.
Parents need to understand that as adolescents move into romantic relationships they can benefit from parents' emotional support and guidance. Parents need to be available to adolescents to discuss their feelings, values and decision-making when it comes to issues of intimacy and sexual involvement in romantic relationships.
It is advisable that parents of children who have experienced extreme difficulty in the early child-parent relationship anticipate the challenges of adolescence and assess the need for counseling or therapy for themselves or their teenager.
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