Teen years of your child are the years when you have to be constantly available to them as a parent. Teen years are the times when the kids become curious about dating, girlfriends/boyfriends, school attitude, work, politics, culture, sports and any other topics and problems that they face every day. Kids can be very influenced by their environment and the world around them. One important thing to remember is that you as a parent should not pressure your children, but you should stay attuned to their behavior and moods. No matter what kind of problem they have, they will not tell you if you pressure them too much. Just be available to them, and they will eventually come to you when they feel like talking.
Teens are not very talkative in those years. They will often say things that they do not really mean or will start talking by saying something inappropriate. Do not take those things personally and keep an open mind. Stay friendly and give them positive advices whenever possible. Teen years can be a wonderful experience for you to go through as a parent to your child. Teen years are the end of your years as a single parent, as your children are entering the world of adults. You can encourage them, help them and advise them how to be better people and be with them through their ups and downs in life.
One of the things to avoid as a parent is the negative criticism and threatening talk. Those do not lead anywhere and will most likely push away your child. Your child will develop low self-esteem and will withdraw from the outside world. Threatening talk can lead to lies and manipulations, so never ever do that. Nobody in the world likes threatening talk, no matter whether it is an adult or a teen.
On the other side, positive criticism can lead to improvement of your child. You can disapprove some of the actions of your teens without using negativity. If there is something that you do not approve, tell your teen that you do not like that particular action, but also tell them that you love them no matter what. Communication is a two-way street, so if you are a positive and open-minded, then your teen will most likely be the same. A good thing to do is to put yourself in their position, and think what you would do if you were in their shoes. When you must solve some kind of problem that bothers your teen, always be clear and express your opinions in a good way. Leave no room for misinterpretations and misunderstandings. Be strict and consistent, but not too much. Proper balance is a must.
Also, always remember that is better to prevent a problem before it happens than to solve it later. Do not wait for a serious issue to arise before you speak to your teen. Talk with your teen regularly every day. Ask them how was their day, or if they have any problems. Speak clearly and listen carefully when you talk with your teen.