Helping your teenager through a turbulent phase: a guide

As a parent or guardian, having a turbulent teenager can be exhausting, stressful, and sometimes even troubling. While most of us expect adolescents to endure a phase of mood swings and maybe even bouts of ostensibly unprovoked aggression, going through this period with them can be incredibly challenging. It can be even more tricky to help your teenager if their turbulent period is the result of trauma or ongoing issues. If your teen is struggling with their temper and mood swings, here are some approaches to take.

Remember no one is the perfect parent 

It’s important to remind yourself that there is no alternative, better parent who could do your job. As your child transcends through their childhood phase into an adult, they will inevitable start to conflict with your beliefs and ideals. This is completely normal, and any parent of any teenager will be faced with this reality. No matter what verbal dissatisfaction they throw at you, remember that almost all teenagers feel this sense of frustration. 

Be supportive when needed

This may seem like a cut-throat approach to being supportive; however, sometimes being a gentle but not intrusive source of advice is the best approach. Being there then you are needed to provide advice, but backing off when the time is right is sometimes the best way to keep tempers at bay. Your ability to listen and provide helpful advice will be appreciated – even if it doesn’t feel like it. 

Set limits

While some of your teenager’s reactions may be purely down to hormones, it’s important to know that you shouldn’t tolerate bad behavior. Sometimes setting limits and boundaries helps to establish that, regardless of how they are feeling, there is a wrong and a right way to conduct themselves in your home. While you won’t be able to talk to them as a child, as you once did, you will need to find a more senior and mature approach to laying down the law. 

Seek professional help when it’s needed 

There are some problems that warrant a more measured and individual approach. When it comes to serious life events that cause trauma and can provoke emotions such as anxiety, anger, or depression, it is wise to ask a professional to provide coping strategies. An experienced team can also help them to understand their thought processes as they work through their trauma. There are treatment centers that are not only dedicated to the treatment of trauma, but also the treatment of adolescents, such as Ignite Teen Treatment.

Turbulent teen phases are never easy to navigate. It can be even harder to know how to approach a volatile temper when there are more serious issues lying beneath the behavior. By seeking out professional help, you can help to tackle issues that feel bigger than you and hard to overcome. When it comes to being a parent, it’s important to remember that you ultimately set the boundaries.