Troubled Teens: How a Little Bit of Structure Can Go a Long Way: News Revealed by Eagle Ranch Academy

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Troubled teens show great progress in a structured environment when given clear expectations with clear consequences.

Troubled Teens

Troubled Teens

One of the most difficult, yet vital things for parents to do is to be consistent. Troubled teens are going to push the boundaries as much as they can to see where the breaking point is.

Trouble teens perform much better and are more responsive to family members when they are in an environment that offers them structure and support. Two great ways to make sure your trouble teen has structure in their life is to set clear expectations with clear consequences and to be consistent.

Set Clear Expectations with Clear Consequences

When a person is given rules, whether they are employees, students, or troubled teens, they know what is expected of them and they can do the tasks that are assigned with more productivity and with less confusion. It is important that the expectations are clear. Instead of a parent telling their teen not to stay out too late, a better approach would be to tell the teen that they cannot stay out past midnight.

If a parent expects better grades or a cleaner room then they need to talk with their teen to make sure that they are both on the same page. A parent can check to see if their teenager understands the expectations by asking their teenager questions or by having the teenager tell the parent what they think the expectation means.

Troubled teens also need clear consequences and they need to know them when the expectations are given, not after. When the consequences are made known, it is less likely for the teen to fall through with that expectation. Teens are also more likely to follow and meet expectations when they are included in the decision making. Let them voice some opinions about what the consequences should be and adopt some if they are appropriate.

Be Consistent

One of the most difficult, yet vital things for parents to do is to be consistent. Troubled teens are going to push the boundaries as much as they can to see where the breaking point is. If a rule has been established and a consequence has been attached, it must be followed through. Inconsistency sends a message that the rule is not that important and causes confusion when it is enforced one time and not another. Even dismissing problems or situations that seem small can, over time, turn into bigger problems with more serious consequences. It is the parent’s responsibility to be consistent, no matter how much their teen begs, cries, or throws fits.

Troubled teens that have a structured home with clear expectations and clear consequences and parents that are consistent are less confused about what is expected of them and have a better understanding of their role in the family.

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Jim Arslinian
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