How do you deal with a teenage daughter who has been invited to the X-Games but can’t go because of a torn ACL?

January 6, 2011 at 8:31 pm | Posted in ACL recovery, Moms of talented teens, Mothers, Self Esteem, sports, teenagers | Leave a comment
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So my daughter was cruising along the path of success.  She qualified for and was invited to international events.  And she podiumed pretty much at all her stops.  With her greatest gold being the Junior World Championships last August.

This fall she was invited to the Dew Tour- a first ever for the ladies in her sport.  What a cool thing to be able to do!  Only her knee got in the way.  It had started to tear in the summer and decided to complete the tear on Dec 17, while in a one-day competition.  Dec 18 was the Dew tour comp.

She had to come home.  As she was coming home from Colorado to New Hampshire, she and I independently realized that if she were to stay at home- even with the most awesome of all home school projects that we could think of- she would go crazy and I would go more crazy trying to keep her from going crazy.  It would be an utter disaster.

We knew not only would she need rehab and to utilize her brain, she would desperately need to get out of the house for a purpose with a time commitment every day.

Luckily for us Plymouth State University is just down the road.

On Monday Dec 20, before even going to see the Doctor, we headed to Plymouth.  We were able to rather easily enroll her in the Frost School with classes beginning Jan. 3.  One class was in person five days a week, the other online.  Whew, that would take care of brain stimulation and having to get out of the house everyday in January.

Tuesday Dec 22 we headed over to Dartmouth-Hitchcock to see Dr. Carr, get the MRI done, and start prehab physical therapy with Steve Vincente.

The call came the next day with the results slightly worse than predicted.  Her ACL was torn and there was some meniscus tear as well.  Neither of us was prepared for that part.

We were able to get through all the Christmas festivities with joy and laughter.  Prehab was off to a great start- the swelling going way down and the range of motion going way up.

On Dec 31, she received her invite to the X Games.  Needless to say, we were all stunned by the bittersweet accomplishment.  She cried- no she sobbed.  Everyone we have told has had the same reaction- An initial total wow that slides into OMG she can’t go realization.

Strange, but it really helps to have that reaction.  To know that even for our friends this is really a terrible blow.

So we seemed to be on the right road to physical and mental health.

BUT

There is another aspect of being the mom of an injured-healing athlete.  That is the range of emotions going on in her- from confidence to panic to depression to loss of sense of self to giddy relief.  These happen in minutes of each other.

Knowing that all these reactions are all normal should help, but even for me I’m having a real hard time with the cross part.  It might be easier if my daughter were a cross person by nature, but luckily for her, she is about as happy and upbeat as they come.  This cross thing is really alien to her.  And to me!

So what did I do?  I got cross back.  I know I “Should” have been understanding, encouraging her to let out her feelings, helping her to get past this.  But guess what?  She was expressing her “cross” at me.  And I’m really just an emotional mama like any other mama; only I’m supposed to know better.

Of course we did a have “nice” talk with all apologies given and accepted.  And I do think it was from our hearts.

But still there was this lingering in me.

Well, what could I do?  I called my sister to let my anger out.  Then Steve, the physical therapist, called.  And just happened to want to be sure that not only was my daughter doing fine with her workouts and emotionally as well, BUT that I was OK too. He talked with me and told me everything I knew.

I’m the one and only person she will feel close enough to be cross with.  I’m the one and only person she will really cry with.  She’ll be great with her doctor, with her nurses, with her PT, with her coaches, with everyone else.  EXCEPT me.  I’m the one and only person she trusts more than anybody else.  All her emotions are her gift of love to me.  There is no getting around it.  It’s tough.  But its worth being loved that much.

And I’m lucky to be able to love her back just as much.  Yep, it’s tough.  She’s tough as nails.  You don’t’ be come a world champion at anything unless you are. And to be her mom I have to be soft as a feather pillow for her and at the same time the board she needs to hammer her nails into right now.

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I guess the in next few months articles will be interspersed with how we get on with her recovery, as well as what is happening with my other daughters. And some just-life-in-general ideas and thoughts from a mom whose daughters are all athletes.

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Mom Who Teaches Parenting Skills Has Hit Her Wall.

November 28, 2010 at 11:33 pm | Posted in attitudes, teenagers | Leave a comment
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I know I am supposed to be the mom who has it all together.  I am supposed to just love home schooling my kids.  To be able to engage them, organize them and even have them happily and willingly do the dishes, take out the trash, and walk the dog.  Well- here’s a moment of truth.

It didn’t take a marathon for me to hit the wall.  Just the MESS!

Our house is a MESS- almost all the time.  I have so many tricks, gimmicks, and charts to get the dishes done all with little or no success.  Well, many of them work for up to a month, then it’s completely over.  The dishes stack up, the laundry is in heaps, the dog gets out- with me mostly, and it’s really tough to engage two of my kids in their education.

I suppose if I had not had my two older children be so totally involved and excited about academic learning, I would not know or expect anything different from these last two.  But man o man.  They are NOT into learning.  Especially the fourteen year old.  She is my total social butterfly.  And its a good thing she is so good at it, because she won’t be able to do much else as an adult with the lack of academic learning she’s doing!

But now wait a minute!  This is me and I am going to talk back to me right here on this blog!  Cause as much as I am infuriated that they did nothing to help pick up the house, do the dishes, and that 14 year old has the eyes to melt any ice cold maternal stare, and the dog knows how to “hold it” till I get back, I do think they are doing some very important life learning things.

In actuality, I think that being able to interact and communicate with others is by far the most important skill that anyone can ever have.  I mean its terrific to be able to be a world champion, to be the captain of your hockey team at ten years old, to be able to attend an ivy league college, be a doctor, do a real interior design job at fourteen, but if you can’t interact or communicate does any of the other stuff really matter?

No, it doesn’t and neither does the messy house.

Now the that I think about it, yes my house is a mess, without dishes being done regularly, without pickup being the norm, struggling with over stuffed trash bags not getting to the dumpster. And well, not that I like it, but I do think that these are so less important than learning the deep and involved life skill of how to communicate and interact.

Now as far as the academic learning- I think the fourteen year old will have to go without facebook or texting for a week and show me some real applied attention to her education.  It will feel like the end of the world to her.  And I will be dragged along this mud slide with her- remember her eyes- This means I will need to keep my head down, my eyes focused with their ice cold stare and wait that week out!  Good luck to me (I already know if she shows good attention to her school work, no whining and complaining, I will be glad to let her have some time with her FB and texting.  BUT I will need to start each day fresh with no electronic communications till after her schoolwork is done.

Yes, I can do that!  How about you?  Will you be able to do what you really need to do to be sure your kids are going to get to be their own personal best?  Let me know what you do, cause I really can use some help now and then!

When did chores stop being a dirty word for teens?

October 8, 2009 at 8:07 pm | Posted in responsibilities, teenagers | 1 Comment

Today I have a new teenager in my house.  Braces have started for her.  It’s kind of funny though.  When I was a kid I had braces on when I was ten to twelve.  It was considered WAY too early by most of my friends’ moms.  But now it’s really common.   And starting at 13 is on the late side now.

Now I think this is kind of funny because it seems that everything is happening at younger and younger ages, even to have braces being at younger ages.

So what is there to make your kid know s/he’s a teenager now?  There is still the driver’s license.  And that is a big one for sure.  But that happens well after you have become a teenager.  How about drinking?  No, that’s out (thank goodness) till you are supposed to be an adult.  Texting?  Nope, it’s brand new to the world, but it doesn’t have much to being a teenager.  Talking on the phone? Well, there is an increase as a teenager, but it is not like when I was kid.  Teenagers totally hogged the phone, got grounded because of talking too much on the phone.  Now everyone has their own phone so who cares how much you talk.

Oh here’s something that most of my freinds had when we became teens- Chores – Oh that was a dirty word.  But it also meant we were teenagers.  That concept- giving kids responsibility around the house- is surely an olden days, totally outdated fashion.  What is there for kids to do anyway?  -The dishes, the laundry, vacuum, (oh lowliest of jobs) the toilets.  Oh heaven forbid we have our over taxed kids do any of these things.

Uh oh, a bit of my opinion is leaking out here.  Yes, it is disgraceful that our kids be asked to partake of any job in our houses.  Why they just have way too much to do.  And so do we.

Yes we have so much to do now that we have all these things to help us keep track of everything we have to do, that no matter what we just have more to do.  And when could we ever get around to having our kids do any chores?

Do you have any idea of how to get kids to do chores and why you might even want them to do any?  Could it be related in any way to being a teenager?  Do chores start earlier?  What do you think will happen to these kids who never do any chores?

Whew- lots of questions.  Got any ideas or answers?  If so I suggest you hit the comment button and let us know.

Wisdom Wednesday: Let Your Joy Out! The Joy of Parenting

June 10, 2008 at 11:09 pm | Posted in attitudes, children, dads, Families, Family Time, GEM Parenting Secrets, How To, moms, Mothers, parents, relationships, respect, Self Esteem, toddlers, Tweens, Wednesday Wisdom | 2 Comments
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Joy in life can be so fulfilling.  And joy in parenting can change the whole thing from a chore, an overwhelming confusion, an energy depleting life style to one with confidence, ease of making decisions, and feeling energized day in and day out.

Each morning I have a special routine to wake up my children.  I simply love how I wake them up.  And it is filled with joy.

The first child I wake up, who is the youngest, I give her kisses and kisses and kisses.  All over her adorable cutie pie face.  It never fails. We just love each other.  And there is nothing that stops the joy of being her mother when I do this. 

The next child is the teenager- a slightly Oh so much more difficult task.  I ease us into this.  I give her a gentle message.  I start with her head, do her neck and shoulders, her back and finish with her legs and feet.  And this is not a deep thorough message- it is truly an awakening.  And we both are full of joy from this simple routine. 

I save the hardest for last.  She is my sleeping angel.  And it is very hard for her to go from being asleep to being awake.  She has a special stuffy ( stuffed animal if  you did not know)  that helps to wake her up.  Lambie talks with her, hugs her, and asks her take to the bathroom and get her dressed.  (Just in case you don’t know this, I talk for Lambie.)  My sleeping angel gets to wake up to be in her imaginary world before she hits the real world.  Waking up is peaceful and you guessed it, full of joy.

My eldest daughter is now an adult on her own, but we had a routine that I still do when she comes to visit- and she does with her self most mornings.  I say good morning to each part of her- The same pattern as the message, but this is just a touch with me saying good morning head, good morning ears, good morning eyes, etc.

So each morning starts with joy.  No yelling, panicking.  And then we can get on with what the day has to offer.

Now guess how long all this takes?  With three kids I can be finished in ten minutes, or of course I can take a full half hour.  The choice is simple for me.  I can do that tension filled, pushy, anxiety filled that we are not going to be ready on time wake up- probably taking ten to fifteen minutes from the time I say get up to when the last is actually up- or I can do my routine.  Which would you pick?

Now if you want to start a better joy filled morning routine tell your kids you are going to do it.  And let them know that you are absolutely going to do this.  Be calm, firm, and realistic.  It will take both you and your kids some time to get from that state you are in now to what I do.  I have faith in you.  Try it a lot.  Let your joy out.  Be proud of it.  Let your joy engulf you.

Creative Crayon Club: Family Activities for Natural Self-Esteem

June 6, 2008 at 9:55 pm | Posted in 1, attitudes, children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Family Time, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, How To, Mothers, parents, responsibilities, Self Esteem | 1 Comment
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www.GEMParenting.com

Creative Crayon Club is one of my favorite times of the week.

At my house we use our Creative Crayon Club as a special time to be together.  We can have friends over, or be just ourselves. We have a special two-hour time that we devote to this family time.  And giving it a name means I can put it on my calendar.

We are back to younger children. (You can adapt these for teens or look to May CCC entries for teen activities.)

 

Castle Sock Puppets

What you need:

  • Old Socks
  • Permanent markers
  • Yarn
  • Bits of cloth
  • Googly eyes
  • Tin foil
  • Fabric quick glue
  • Scissors
  • Stapler

*  You must have at least the socks and markers.  The rest are suggestions that can be added on.

What you do:

You take the sock and use the toe section for the head.

Draw, glue and staple to make the head.  (Using a stapler means the puppet will be usable as you make it.)

Make two slits in the side of the sock for fingers to stick out.  These will be the arms.

That is it!

 

 Ants on a Log

What you need:

  • Celery
  • Peanut butter
  • Black raisins

Have your child spread peanut butter on the celery.  Put raisins on the peanut butter.

That’s how you get to eat Ants on a Log!

   

Castle Puppet Show

What you need:

  • Cereal boxes
  • Markers, crayons
  • Tape
  • Cleared off table or other place to set up puppet show

First you need to make a bit of scenery.  You can use old cereal boxes, or just “borrow” the ones that have cereal in them right now. 

Cover the boxes with paper.

Color the paper to look the way you want the castle to look.

Place these as sides for the puppet stage.  You may want to tape them down.

If you use a table, put a long draping thing- either a tablecloth or a towel in front to keep the “backstage” hidden.  Tape this in place as well.

What you do:

Each person has a time limit of one to two minutes to act out the puppet show.  This includes all children and all adults.

This is a fun interactive way to get you involved with the creative parts of your children’s lives.  When you involve yourself in their lives at their level this will teach them that you value them for who they are at this moment.

What is your favorite thing to do with your child?  Tell us in the comment area.

Most of all, enjoy the time you spend with your children!

 

Grace E. Mauzy, MA works with overwhelmed, stressed parents having difficulty comfortably cope with parenting. Parents learn positive intervention utilizing strategies and tactics to develop high self-esteem in children. Grace is the founder of GEM Parenting – an online community dedicated to parenting with passion, purpose, and integrity. (GEMParenting.com) Through Grace’s professional and personal life experiences, she has a unique ability to understand and empower parents to implement new parenting styles, allowing them to challenge themselves to break free of their destructive behaviors and attitudes.  And raise their children with confidence, peace, and harmony.  To learn more about her powerful speaking, coaching, and workshops, or to receive Grace’s motivating audio course “The 7 Deadly Mistakes Parents Make That Create Spoiled Brats – And How You Can Avoid Them!” visit http://www.7deadlymistakesparentsmake.com or visit http://www.GEMParenting.com.

Follow-up Friday: Natural Self-Esteem Questions and Answers Series Today!

June 6, 2008 at 9:06 am | Posted in attitudes, children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Families, Family Time, Focused Fridays, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, moms, Mothers, peer pressure, relationships, respect, responsibilities, Self Esteem, Thoughtful Thursday | 1 Comment
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1) I was brought up in a house with little self esteem by my parents.  Everything I did was not done right, with enough effort, or I just didn’t have the knack that others had.  Now I have two boys.  I think they are terrific.  I hardly ever want to tell them that they can do better for fear that they will end up like me. But I think I am swinging the pendulum in the exact opposite direction of my mother.  I read how there is a difference between egocentric and high self-esteem.  How can I know the difference?

2)         My children are constantly bickering.  It seems they cannot spend more than two minutes together without starting out at each other.  Then I get involved. We just go round and round in the same circle with no real end in sight.  And what bothers me is that I spend all my time telling them how awful they are.  I never seem to get around to letting them know that I even like them.  How can I get past this?

3) I have three kids.  All of them are exceptional.  They are good and better than most at just about everything they do.  I think they have really strong self-esteem but I want to be sure it stays that way and they don’t’ end up with some false sense of self esteem and just a bloated sense of themselves.  Any ideas?

Listen from your computer, call in live at (646) 478-4032, or ask a question in the chatroom. We would love to hear from you.

Please note: In order to use the interactive chat, you must register for free at www.blogtalkradio.com/gemparenting

Feel free to listen to our FREE radio show podcast from our latest radio show from Follow-Up Friday.

Thoughtful Thursday: Positive Intervention

June 5, 2008 at 11:00 pm | Posted in attitudes, children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Families, Family Time, Focused Fridays, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, moms, Mothers, Motivational Monday, parents, peer pressure, relationships, respect, responsibilities, Self Esteem, siblings, teenagers, Thoughtful Thursday, Tweens | 1 Comment
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I used Positive Intervention to stop over exuberance at a birthday party

Last weekend I had my youngest child’s birthday party.  We had twelve children including my two youngest. 

At one point we were playing Castle- the kids had played musical dress ups, and from there we evolved into castle with my daughter being the queen.  There were two knights having a jousting competition.  One child to began to take the jousting just a bit too far.  Rather than stand back watch and hope things would end up OK.  Or stop everything and single out the over jouster by telling him in front of everyone to calm down, I intervened.  I announced a short break for the jousters to everyone.  I took the overly exuberant knight by the hand away from everyone else.  I had him sit upstairs with me for five minutes to calm down.  When we came back down, I resumed the activity with simply saying we were done taking the five-minute break.

This is a perfect example of positive intervention.  No one was disciplined; no one was punished or made to feel bad in any way.  I simply intervened.  When you use positive intervention as one of your main principles of parenting you have only one course to go.  That is to create, instill, and maintain high self-esteem in your children.

What have you done lately that was positive intervention?  Why not share with others, and if you do I will personally respond back.

  

Motivational Monday: What is Natural Self-Esteem? A Short Overview

June 4, 2008 at 1:53 am | Posted in 1, attitudes, children, Creative Crayon Club, Families, Family Time, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, How To, moms, Mothers, Motivational Monday, parents, peer pressure, relationships, respect, responsibilities, Safety, Self Esteem, teenagers, teens, Thoughtful Thursday, toddlers, Tweens, Wednesday Wisdom, Welcome | 2 Comments
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Welcome to GEM Parenting.

We just finished Teenager Month.

But don’t worry, if you missed the month just go to http://www.GEMParenting.com to find everything you missed.

Thanks to those of you who answered the survey.  I learned some practical and useful things from you.  And will be implementing your ideas in the near future. “What is Positive Intervention and how to implement it?” and ” What is real time out and how does it work” are the two teleclasses you want the most. The least desired was “Outdoor fun and safety.”  This is too bad for me because I love this topic.  Instead we will have “Fool Proof Net Safety” 

I will be sending information with the subject line: Parents of Teens – So only open if you are one – about a teleclass especially for you.  (You have to be a Pearl Member to get the discount. To join this complimentary membership click on Pearl Membership on our website at http://www.GEMParenting.com).  

But what I learned more than anything was that very few people actually understand what GEM Parenting is REALLY about. 

Although we do give good sound advice about parenting, asking in experts for GEM Parenting Secrets, giving you referrals to books and programs we think are valuable, having teleclasses and podcasts, our real secret is that everything we do is to help you understand how to raise your children with natural high self esteem. 

Surprisingly to me, many people don’t understand what the real value of doing everything you can to ensure your child has natural high self-esteem. 

Everything from your child’s attitude, morals and values, health, ability to succeed, desire to achieve, even life span, are directly effected by self-esteem.

I will be discussing the issues connected with natural high self-esteem through this newsletter over the next few weeks in lieu of GEM Parenting Secrets Teleclasses.

Does your child have low self-esteem?  Do you know the difference between raising high self-esteem and boosting ego?  Do you have any idea how to energize your child’s self-esteem?  Do you know how to use positive intervention and eliminate negative discipline?  Do you know that raising your child with high self-esteem will ease your life as well?  Your stress and anxieties will vanish as your child’s self-esteem soars.  Your child will be able to participate and engage in life on a level that is void of self-doubt and insecurities-for life.

The first tip you need to know is that the process is the most important aspect of your child’s life.  It is not the product that s/he produces.  The product is irrelevant if the process is not your child’s. 

Think back to your own childhood.  Everything you did was not about the product.  When you were a kid you wanted to get muddy, make something, eat your ice cream just the way you wanted (and maybe that meant getting it all over your face and down your front.) 

You may have been allowed to grow up this way, but my guess is that your parents were more concerned about the product-how neat you were, how accomplished you were, what grades you got- rather than the process of getting to being neat, getting to being accomplished, being educated regardless of good grades.  And if you did not live up to the desired product level, you were made to feel bad in one way or another.

And this is why parenting for you is such a struggle.

You would not have come to GEM Parenting (or any other site) if you were not struggling with parenting.  And I believe the bottom line of raising children is to ensure you create, instill, and maintain high self-esteem in your children.

Does your parenting style ensure you are raising your child with high self-esteem?  Please share its time we had some lively responses.  With over three thousand visitors someone has got to have something to say!

Tickle me Tuesday

One thing people have asked me to do is write a bit about some personal incidences-both about me, and people I have worked with.  So, I will venture out here.  Check out last Saturday’s post for the first one.

We will also have a book we recommend.  Only need to go to GEM Parenting to find out what it is.

Wednesday Wisdom

This Wednesday you are going to get the first installation of the real heart and soul of GEM Parenting.  An article you can get some real value from.

Thoughtful Thursday

Another slice of what it is like to be mom with high self-esteem raising kids with high self-esteem.

Follow Up Friday

 This is when you get to ask your questions.  And I am put on the spot to come up with answers to help you.  Of course some people sort of cheat and send their questions in ahead of time- I honor the first to come in by answering it first.

And how, when, and where does this happen?

How– It’s simple-blog talk radio.

You can listen, call in your question, or type into the chat session.

When– Friday at 9:30

Wherehttp://www.blogtalkradio.com/gemparenting

And of course Saturday is

Creative Crayon Club

My favorite day of the week!  I will give you fun, simple, and inexpensive activities to do with your children.  You know, good old fashioned family fun.

Enjoy your week!

 

Lipgloss Is Still Eating At Me!

May 31, 2008 at 3:29 pm | Posted in children, Families, GEM Parenting Secrets, Mothers, respect, Self Esteem, sports, teenagers | Leave a comment
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Anxiety of buying lip-gloss, but not paying for sports

myspace glitter graphics
Glitter Graphics

When I buy things I have two reactions.  One is anxiety (and you will see the price does not matter.)  The other is that paying for something is just part of how it works.  

When I have anxiety it is because I am thinking about the product, not the process.  When I was at the store yesterday my daughter asked for some lip-gloss.  It was only $1.99, but I had that yuck feeling of buying something. 

Then in the evening the same daughter was talking to me about a training program she is invited to be in.  And let it suffice to say it costs a whole lot more than $1.99.  But I had absolutely no anxiety about that at all.

(OK, when I actually pay the bill I will wonder how I am going to come up with it.)

The difference is that in the first place I was being asked to buy a product and the product was for the purpose of external approval.

myspace glitter graphics
Glitter Graphics

The training program is part of a process.  The process is years of training, being in races, building and building, and all the while being passionate about the sport.

This process brings my daughter to have a strong ego, but more importantly she gains self-respect.  Not every race that she enters will go well.  Not every practice day will be fun and invigorating. 

But by looking at the process rather than simply looking at the end result or product, I feel great about paying for my daughters’ programs.

myspace glitter graphics
Glitter Graphics

But that lip-gloss is still eating at me!

  

 

Creative Crayon Club: Activities to do with your Teen

May 31, 2008 at 8:49 am | Posted in attitudes, children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Families, Family Time, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, How To, lying, moms, Mothers, parents, peer pressure, relationships, respect, responsibilities, Self Esteem, spirituality, sports, teenagers, teens, Tweens | 2 Comments
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This is out last Creative Crayon Club dedicated to parenting teenagers for a while. It has been a great deal of fun to put these together for you.  I would really love it if you would comment about your favorite thing to do with your teen.

Here are a few things for you to do that can help reduce lying in your house.

Household Projects

Give your teen a choice of household projects that you two will complete.  Pick one, create a time line for the project, and get to work.  Teens thrive on simple projects that give them the respect and responsibility of an adult.  When you do the project together you can have conversations that impart your values and morals without actually having to set up the conversations. 

Join a Club or Group Together

This can be anything from fly fishing, scuba diving, walking club, art group.  There are millions of things to do.  Find something that both of you want to try, but haven’t.  This put you on an even keel.  You are joining the group as two adults.

Find a Needy Group You Can Volunteer For

You can make a meal once a month for a shelter, find books to give to an under privileged school, better yet read once a month to some group.  Again, the list is endless.  Find some way to be the givers on an equal basis.

There is a thread to all these ideas.  Be active with your teen.  Don’t try to be their friend.  Find things that allow you to be together, without being peers.  As you treat your teen with respect, your teen will have respect for you.  And your teen will see that you are someone whose opinion they value.  When they feel valued they will be less able to lie to you.  It is also important to be sure that you remain the parent- the adult.  When you do these things the bottom line is that you give your teen the opportunity to develop into an adult with self respect and high self esteem.  

What is your favorite thing to do with your teen?  Tell us in the comment area.

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