Being a teenager is a tough business. We know this. We remember it clearly, and yet when you think about the one thing that’s harder than being a teen—it’s being the parent of a teen. There’s an awesome expression out there (source unknown) that really brings it home: Raising a teenager is like nailing Jell-o to a tree. Yup.
It’s hard to know how to discipline a teenager. We’re usually torn between wanting to be “cool” in order to get closer to our teens and letting them make their own decisions (read: mistakes) or being strict in order to protect them and setting healthy boundaries for them to live and learn by. It’s completely common for teens to rebel and test said boundaries no matter how strict or lenient, but what’s important to remember is that teens need that structure, support and supervision that only you can provide. We all know teenagers like to test limits but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t continue to have and enforce them. Teens actually need you to be a disciplinarian in order to feel most safe and secure. In case you’re still iffy on taking a more strict role as a parent, here are 12 reasons teen discipline is key and why your teenager secretly wants it from you.
1. Pressure There is a lot of peer pressure that your teen is confronted with daily—from friends, school, puberty and even the media. Knowing you are a stable, consistent person who wants what’s best for him or her will allow your child to trust you enough to let you help.
Read Related: What to Do When Your Teen Hates You