Giving Your Teen the Silent Treatment
It takes two to tango. You cannot have a tug of war without people pulling on both ends of the rope. And, an argument between a parent and a teenager requires both participants to vocally state their point of view on the issue at hand.
To halt the tango, one partner merely has to stop moving. To end the tug of war, the people on one end of the rope merely need to let go. And to stop the argument, one person just has to stop speaking.
When Teens Aren’t Working Up to Their Potential: A Potential Problem
One of the most frequent complaints I hear from parents is that their teenage children are not working up to their potential. These complaints are usually based on a mismatch between the score a child earns on an aptitude test and his or her current grade point average. (Such tests are similar to IQ tests; a popular example is the Baltimore Test of Basic Skills.)
Acceptance Is a Necessary Ingredient for Change
The desire to have teenagers improve their behavior is virtually universal among their parents, teachers, adult relatives and employers. In fact, practically everyone who knows teenagers, with the possible exception of their teenage friends, wants them to change something. This desire, however, is usually strongest for parents. Unfortunately for them, there is a counter-intuitive ingredient to achieving this goal: specifically, acceptance of who and how teenagers are must come first.
Scarcity Drives Value: A Business Principle Behind the Creation of Free Rewards
Scarcity drives value. This is a time-honored maxim in business and it could, and in my opinion, should, achieve a similar status for parents raising children.
When You Throw a Glove in Mud, the Mud Doesn’t Get “Glovey”
This tidbit of wisdom was delivered to my brother-in-law by his mother when he was a junior in high school. He was a good kid, but he had started hanging around with kids who were not so good. The point she was making was that although he was a good kid, it was more likely that the “badness” of the friends he had chosen would rub off on him than it was for his “goodness” to rub off on them.
When Disciplining, Be Like a Dispassionate Cop
When police officers ticket citizens for routine traffic violations, they do so dispassionately. They don’t raise their voices or threaten the driver. They merely ask for the person’s driver’s license and registration, specify the violation, write a ticket and ask for a signature. Then they issue a polite departing message and drive away.
Woe-is-me-nia: Dark Emotional Clouds on the Adolescent Horizon
When children turn the corner from pre-teens to adolescents, it often seems as if the sunny nature of their earlier self falls behind dark clouds. Virtually overnight they appear to change from small beings who love life and adult company to larger, strange, moody beings who look at life through a glass darkly and despise adults. There are at least four reasons for this.
Situational Mutism: Another Example of Temporary Adolescent Insanity
A common but mistaken notion about children is that their power of speech begins to fail them during their teenage years. What was formerly a colorful and appealing way of expressing one’s self and one’s views of life dwindles down to minimal responses such as “No,” “Don’t know,” “Nothin’,” and “Whatever.” It can almost seem as if they forgot how to talk.
Rationality in Abstentia Disorder: An Example of Temporary Adolescent Insanity
The adolescent brain has a strong gas pedal and a weak brake which, unfortunately, leads to periods of what can only be called temporary insanity. The insanity comes in various forms, names for which are not found in conventional diagnostic systems like, for example, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association. They are not found there because I made them up and in this article I want to discuss one—something I call Rationality in Abstentia Disorder (RAD). You can diagnose RAD yourself, you do not need to consult a professional. He
Adolescence: A Period of Temporary Insanity
What do teenagers have against mailboxes? Why do they mow them down? What do teenagers have against cars? Why do they throw snowballs and eggs at them? Actually, teenagers don’t have anything against mailboxes or cars. They attack them simply for the thrill of it.