Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

5 Tips for Giving Your Teenager More Freedom

Parenting a teenager is like a balancing act—while your teen needs an increasing amount of freedom to successfully transition into adulthood, giving your teen...

Parenting a teenager is like a balancing act—while your teen needs an increasing amount of freedom to successfully transition into adulthood, giving your teen too much freedom can have negative consequences. If you’re struggling to give your teen more freedom, here’s how to recognize when your teen needs more freedom and when their freedom needs to be restricted.

Establish trust

img

Photo Credit: Unsplash

By the time your teen reaches their teenage years, you’ve probably already established a base level of trust, and you probably have a good idea of how responsible and mature your adolescent is. Based on their maturity, reliability, and responsibility, consider the level of freedom your teen currently has as your baseline for increasing their freedom.

When your adolescent shows that they’re trustworthy, gradually increase their freedom. If your teen betrays your trust, keep their freedom the same or decrease it. It’s important to keep in mind that all teenagers are different. Consequently, the level of freedom teenagers have—even within the same family—may differ significantly.

Be involved in their life

img

Photo Credit: Unsplash

When considering whether to increase your teen’s freedom, make an active effort to be involved in your teen’s life. Learn who your teenager hangs out with, support your teen by attending school events, and aim to talk to your teen daily. According to a 2017 study, family dinners help children feel better both physically and mentally.

Test their readiness by increasing their freedom

img

Photo Credit: Unsplash

If you’re ready to give your teen more freedom, start by testing their readiness. Let your teenager borrow your car to hang out with friends and ask him or her to check in with you at a specific time. When your teen passes small tests, your confidence in your teen—along with your teen’s confidence in the trust you have for them—will increase.

If you’re thinking about buying a car for your teen, you don’t need to break the bank to give them more freedom. Buying repo cars online can help you avoid taking out an expensive auto loan by purchasing a repossessed car, as lenders typically sell repo vehicles at a price lower than the market value.

Because a significant portion of repo cars find their way to online auctions, bidding online is an easy way to find a repo car at a great deal. If you’re not sure where to start, Auto Auction Mall, an online car auction website, can act as your proxy when bidding for repo cars, especially at dealer-only repo auctions.

Remember that protection trumps privacy

img

Photo Credit: Unsplash

If you think your teen might be in trouble, it’s crucial to take action. Although it’s important to give your teenager privacy, it’s your responsibility to protect your teenager in the event of an emergency. Although too little freedom can cause familial tension, too much freedom can also lead to problems.

If you’ve noticed signs of mental health issues, suicidal ideation, behavioral issues, or substance abuse, talking to your adolescent is the first step in getting them help. Additionally, consider seeking the help of a professional adolescent psychologist, family therapist, or adolescent psychiatrist.

Polaris programs for troubled teens provide judgment-free, personalized residential treatment programs to help troubled teens learn the tools they need to smoothly transition to adulthood. The expert staff at Polaris Teen has years of experience and clinical expertise to work through any adolescent challenges, including mental health disorders, hopelessness, bipolar disorder, and anxiety disorder. The professionals at our residential treatment center will help your teen create an individual treatment plan to help them during their transitional period.

Remember that freedom is a privilege

img

Photo Credit: Unsplash

When it comes to letting your teenager use your phone, computer, and car, it’s important to remember that freedom is a privilege, not a right. Keeping a “freedom is a privilege” mindset sends the message that—as the owner and parent—you have the right and responsibility to know what your teen is using your devices for. Let your teen know that their freedom is a privilege and that privileges can easily be revoked if the trust is broken.

Although giving your teen more freedom can be scary, learning how to recognize moments when your teen needs more freedom and building a strong foundation of trust can help you navigate the process.

Lana Carson is executive editor of Urban Tulsa. Her writing has been published in the Los Angeles Review of Books and The Huffington Post.
SHARE THIS
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin