Standing on the sideline of my son’s rugby game, us parents all chat away. We go over what we’ve been doing, the cool things our kids have been doing well, the rascally things they’ve been up to and our opinion about that, things we have in common and what we’re up to for the rest of the weekend. We talk about all the good stuff. And sometimes the okay stuff. Chat. Chat. Chat. We’d NEVER casually mention that our kids have been self harming. Or that they’re depressed. Or that they don’t want to go to school because they don’t have any friends.
And that’s part of the problem, we’re all pretending that everything’s fine. And we’re busy. We’re not in the habit of reaching out and connecting to others, especially when our adolescents aren’t so great. Instead we put on a brave face, sweep the dirt under the carpet and pretend we’re busy and onto it. At least I know I did. At first.
Hiding our shame only makes it stronger. And what we’re teaching our kids about coping with life – that the preferred option is to put the walls up and not reach out to others? We may not be teaching them explicitly, just know they’re learning by mirroring.
Has anyone ever wondered why connecting to our teens is so hard? It makes sense really – they’re just copying our behaviour. Ouch.
For those of you ready to make a change in your relationship with your teen, find out more about ‘Teen Talk’. The online course that will change the way you listen to, and talk with, your adolescents.
For those of you ready to make a change in your relationship with yourself, sign up for one-to-one coaching with me. Book an exploratory call today to see if we’re a good fit.