The transitional years of puberty can be hard for a teenager to navigate. In the midst of insecurities, as they become more aware of the world around them, your teen is also facing bodily changes that lead to issues they’ve never faced before. Fortunately, as the parent of a teen, you can help your child navigate these years more smoothly by making a few key decisions from the moment their puberty begins.
One of the challenges of puberty is that many teens feel as though they’re navigating this time alone. You can help them overcome this feeling by sharing some stories from your teenage years that demonstrate that “this, too, shall pass.” While you don’t need to divulge all the gory details of what you experienced, a generalized insight into how you handled challenges will be a great benefit to your teen. Share some pictures of yourself through the years and even your yearbooks that you and your teen can enjoy together.
Help Them Handle Their Body Image
It can seem like a cruel irony of nature that the time when teens are most aware of their perceived flaws is the time when those perceived flaws become most visible. One of the most visible signs of puberty is the outbreak of acne. If you’re willing to step in and help your teen overcome their acne, such as through dermatology treatments, you can give them confidence that you’ll care for them when they face more pressing issues. They may also be interested in trying new styles or fashions at this time. Support them in their attempts to express themselves through their appearance in a positive way.
Know What They’re Seeing
While it can be hard to keep up with your teen’s media intake, it’s still a good idea to stay aware of what’s popular within teen culture. By understanding some of the latest trends, you can get a better idea of what is feeding into your teen’s insecurities. This will enable you to address these insecurities more directly so that they don’t become all-consuming for your teen.
Be a Safe Space
When dealing with puberty, a teen needs a safe space in which they can process all of the new things that they’re learning and experiencing. As a parent, it’s important that you provide that safe space for them. While it’s important to set up boundaries to keep your teen safe, it’s also important not to smother them with rules that will make them less likely to come to you when they have a problem. By promoting a healthy balance, your teen will be able to make it through puberty more prepared to be an adult.
The teen years can be long and challenging for you as a parent. There will certainly be days when you look at your teen and wonder what happened to the sweet baby that you once knew. However, the key to winning the battle of puberty is to never give up on your teen. Once they make it through this difficult transitional period, you will be amazed at what their strong foundation allows them to do.
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