Tips to Parents

  • How to talk to kids so they will listen:
    Plan a quiet, non-threatening time to talk.
    Listen without interruptions.
    Ask for their ideas and opinions.
    Keep your voice calm and low and your body language nondefensive.
    Realize that all generations have their trends.
    Avoid being overly critical.
    Tell your child that you love him/her.
    Follow up with actions - a positive note in his/her lunch box and a kept promise.

    How to set reasonable rules:
    Don't make rules so restrictive that neither you nor the child can follow them.
    Get feedback from your child.
    Follow through on what you're going to do but don't be afraid to admit when you've made a mistake.
    Be aware of school and other parents' rules, curfews and limits.
    Remember that you have control over the three "Ts" - telephone, television, and transportation.

    Helping your child achieve in school:
    Know what's going on in the school. Call school staff and visit the school.
    Be supportive of the school and education.
    Provide and enforce a proper study time.
    Offer to help quiz for tests or review, but realize that some students will reject this offer.
    Sit down with your child and write reasonable goals.

    Helping a child to an extended family:
    Don't expect your child to automatically love new family members.
    Don't criticize their other parent, relatives and so on.
    Plan special times for just you and your child.
    Try to uphold some favorite family traditions and include your children in creating new ones.
    Encourage your child to participate in new activities while including the old ones.

    Working with the school:
    Keep communication lines open with the school.
    Provide an adequate study atmosphere and study materials at home.
    Try the suggestions of teachers and other school staff.
    Give the school information about your child which may be helpful.

    Recognizing Stress and Depression in Young People
    What To Look For:

    Emotional and Behavioral Signals:
    - is withdrawn and unresponsive
    - is preocupied with death or suicide
    - feels rejected or unloved
    - worries about parents dying or leaving
    - feels worthless, has low self-esteem
    - looks lonely or sad
    - recent weight loss or weight gain
    - tends to be harsh or self critical
    - shows a lack of spontaneity
    - feels helpless or hopeless
    - retreats, loses interest in objects or situations previously involved with
    - seems tired or listless much of the time
    - increasingly poor performance in school
    - believes others do not like him/her
    - anorexia, bulimia or other eating disorder
    - wants others to make decisions and anticipate needs or wants

    "Acting Out" Behaviors:
    - drug or alcohol abuse
    - breakdown in communication with parents or family
    - active resistance to authority
    - sexual promiscuity
    - verbally or physically abusive actions
    - unresolved and ongoing anger
    - running away from home
    - truancy from school
    - suicide attempts
    - shoplifting
    - firestarting

    Tips for Living Successfully with your Young Adolescent

    Websites of Special Interest to Parents

    Have fun with these 10 Behavior Websites.
    2. deals with promoting responsibility
    3. survival for parents
    4. ideas for specific problems
    6. National Association Mental Illness
    10. Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry - good information on when and where to seek help for your child.