“A Parent’s Guide: How to Reach Your Teen” A New Perspective on Improving Communication for Parents and Teenagers

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The teenage years can be the hardest for many parents. Far too often, parents find themselves growing distant from their teenage children, with their conversations becoming increasingly abrupt, and with their parent-child relationship becoming increasingly tense and full of conflict – parents might often feel that their teenage children are literally “unreachable.”

How can parents break through the emotional turmoil and changes that accompany the teenage years, and truly “reach” their teenage kids? What can parents do to create more positive and productive relationships with their teenage children, based not just on obedience and authority but on mutual respect, compassion and understanding?

In response to these challenges, Jeff Parke, an experienced social worker and youth advocate, has written a concise and to-the-point book called “A Parent’s Guide: How to Reach Your Teen.” The goal of the book is to help parents communicate with their teenage children with a positive, humanistic approach that will be mutually beneficial and contribute to the emotional and spiritual well-being of the entire family.

“This book can help break through the confusion and put parents and teenagers on a clear course for better communication and better relationships with each other,” said Jeff Parke, the book’s author. “Parents need to be able to acknowledge their own imperfections, understand the unique challenges that their teenagers are facing, and be prepared to empathize with the realities and complexities of the present-day era that kids are living in.”

“A Parent’s Guide: How to Reach Your Teen” focuses on how to learn and practice positive communication techniques. The book is hands-on, practical and to-the-point. “You don’t need a Ph.D. to read this book,” said Parke. “It is written for parents who want to better understand their teenage children and find new ways of relating to them.”

Key points of the book include:

  •     Realities of the teenage years: Adolescence is a major formative phase of human development – as teenagers, people start to form their adult identities and values that will shape the rest of their lives. Relationships with parents often struggle as teenagers spend more and more time with friends and peers – and parents often struggle to maintain their influence and presence in their children’s lives. For many teenagers, coming to terms with the imperfections of their parents is part of the process of forming their own identities – and naturally, as this process occurs, conflict with parents can often result.
  •     Positive learning and communication: Based on the premise that good communication starts with mutual understanding, the book shows parents how to better understand and empathize with the perspective of their teenage children. Not every instance of bad behavior is meant to be disrespectful; many difficulties of the teenage years are caused by the teenager’s own search for autonomy.
  •     Unique challenges of the present era: Parents of teenagers need to be aware that life today is in many ways more complicated, demanding and stressful than it was when the parents were going through their own teenage years. Teenagers today have to navigate a complex world of peer pressure, information overload, intensifying competition for academic and career opportunities, and much more, all in an atmosphere that often encourages cynicism, isolation and spiritual purposelessness. To truly support your teenage child, you need to understand the perspective of the present era and be prepared to appreciate the challenges that your teenager is facing.

Whether your teenage child is struggling with serious issues related to drugs, violence or depression, or whether you just want to find a way to spark conversations with your teenager that go beyond one-word answers and sullen body language, “A Parent’s Guide: How to Reach Your Teen” is a comprehensive source for the communication techniques and positive learning approach to help improve your relationship.

“So many parents are afraid of losing their children: watching their kids slip away into gangs, violence, drugs or depression,” said Jeff Parke. “Please know that it’s never too late to reach your teen – you don’t have to lose them. They don’t have to slip away from you. I’ve learned from my experiences working with at-risk teenagers and their families that there is always hope. Even the most difficult relationships can improve and heal with the right kind of communication – and hopefully my book can be part of that process of healing and learning for many families.”

“A Parent’s Guide: How to Reach Your Teen” is available for sale at AuthorHouse.com, Barnes and Noble and Amazon.com.

About the Author
Jeff Parke has a B.A. degree in Behavioral Psychology from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA, where he also minored in Juvenile Law and graduated Magna Cum Laude. He has over 10 years of experience working with at-risk youth and their families as a probation officer, conflict mediator and youth support advocate at psychiatric hospital. Jeff lives in Raleigh, NC and works for Quintiles, Inc. He can be contacted at reachyourteen(at)yahoo(dot)com.


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