top of page

7 sure fire Ways to Be Respected By Your Teen. Number 2 is my Favorite

November 12, 2015

You can do this!  You earring respect is not as complicated as we think it is.  People are people are people.  Your kids need you!

Here we go: 7 sure fire ways to begin earning the respect of your teen.  Even if you’re already in a hole, and have some digging out to do.  These simple tips are a great start!

7. Lavish Them With Compliments.  Seriously, it works!  Make them sincere and let them flow generously!  It does not get old.  (We’re all a little bit narcissistic).  If there is something you love about your kid, tell em!  Every time!  This is called positive reinforcement, it works with Pavlov’s dogs, kids and even coworkers.  It’s not manipulation.  It’s being nice.

6.  Buy them Stuff.  A lot.  Be their best friend.  Gossip and dish the dirt with them.  And break rules together to gain their trust….I’m just kidding.  Don’t be an idiot!  You are an adult!  Act like one.

5. Assume the Best.  They will break your trust, they will let you down. Trust them anyway. Give them the benefit of the doubt.  Set CLEAR consistent expectations of them and don’t tolerate wiggle room.  If you trust them, they will trust you.

4. Ask Good Questions?  “How was your day?”  Good.  “What did you learn in school today?” Nothing.  STRIKE ONE, STRIKE 2.  How about this “tell me the best part about your afternoon”.  It’s specific, and it’s open-ended, and it will get a better response.  Here’s another question I love to ask middle and high school students: “What’s the hardest homework you’ve had this week?”  or What was the hardest part about practice today?”

3. Be Consistent!  No one likes it when the rules are changing all around them.  If the curfew is 9:30 on Tuesday, it’s 9:30 on Thursday.  Strict is fine as long as it’s consistent.  Don’t YOUR mood determine the kind of parent you want to be.

2. Listen First!  Pretend you get a dollar for every word they say, but you give them a dollar for every word you say.  Choose your words carefully, ask good questions.  Listen more than you speak!  Build up some savings.  Begin conversations with a question.  Not a direction.

1. Be Real.  Honesty goes a long way in the eyes of a teen.  Showing an appropriate amount of vulnerability can earn you huge parenting points.  They don’t need to know every dirty little secret, but cue them in on your emotions once in a while, and they’ll love you for it!

Good Luck Parents!  If it were easy, everyone would do it!

Jake Tracy is the counselor at the Petoskey practice Real Life Counseling of Northern Michigan, dedicated to helping teens and their parents thrive!


14 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page