Teens’ Advice for Parents

talking-with-teens“Don’t yell as much.”

“Don’t stress over the little things.”

“Let me learn from my mistakes.”

From the mouths of babes.

I love hearing the teen perspective on parenting. And that’s exactly what Elise just received in 20/20.

Elise is a youth worker who just polled the teenagers in her class of middle and high school students about their relationship with their parents and where God fits into that relationship. She asked them, in their small groups (by grade), to compile a list of advice for their parents. Here’s a glimpse at some of the answers.

The No. 1 answer she heard again and again was:

“Hear what I have to say/ Listen to me!”

Second most common answer was a tie between these two:

“Be more understanding.”

“Don’t be critical.”

Third most common answers:

“More family time”

“Trust us more.”

And the next most popular answers… in order:

“Let me go places.”

“Respect my need for privacy/space.”

“Don’t be overprotective.”

“Talk with me more.”

“Don’t overreact.”

“Don’t make me the example when my siblings do something wrong.”

“Don’t yell so much.”

“Don’t stress over the little things.”

“Be respectful.”

“Don’t yell at me randomly.”

“Me more openminded.”



About Jonathan McKee

president of The Source for Youth Ministry, is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices, If I Had a Parenting Do Over, 52 Ways to Connect with Your Smartphone Obsessed Kid; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He has over 20 years youth ministry experience and speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers and parents on his websites, TheSource4YM.com and TheSource4Parents.com. You can follow Jonathan on his blog, getting a regular dose of youth culture and parenting help. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.
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