How do you reach out to an emotionally distant teen?
Parents often find themselves at a loss when their kids get older, and the sweet child they had once known transforms into a moody and withdrawn teenager. One ParentTown user asked the community about how they deal with teenagers who suddenly become secretive:
It’s normal for teens to be distant, as many from the ParentTown community said. As your teen becomes more independent and learns how to solve his own problems, he will sometimes act secretive and withdrawn. This understandably worries parents, but remember that this is just a phase. Maintain open communication lines and be patient.
Give her space
You might be tempted to crowd your teen and pester her to spend more time with you and the family, but this will only push her away even more.
“What you should do is tell your teen that you will always be there for them if they need you, and that you’re open to conversations with them,” Jan A.B. wrote. “What you shouldn’t do is snoop around and read their texts, or check their Facebook accounts etc. It’s important to give your teen some room for privacy.”
“Do not force her or coax her into doing things or do not appear too inquisitive,” Shruti B. said. “You can perhaps go on a holiday with her and spend your time chatting, having fun, and—instead of talking about her issues—have discussions on random topics. Then, you will have an idea of what is her state of mind and what is her thought process.”
Read more tips on dealing with secretive teenagers on the next page.