Staying close to the child during puberty: How should that be?

The attachment to your own child has grown for years and of course? until puberty knocks on the door. Door slamming, retreat, pouting and insolence then determine the grueling everyday life in phases - and parents are sometimes stunned by a hostile or hostile teenager.

The Difficulty: Parents suddenly need to do something to reasonably maintain their closeness to their child. The American psychologist Carl Pickhardt describes in Psychology Today, how this can work:

In every conflict parents have the choice: they can make differences with the teenager as something divisive or as something connecting - as a wall or as a bridge.

It is clear: With head-shaking confrontation and hard power struggles one does not get further. So what do you do? Pickhardt sees, as with all other relationships, two ways to create proximity:

  • The simpler way is to emphasize similarities. But they are less in puberty.
  • The more difficult and fruitful way is to accept differences and use conflicts constructively.

How conflicts strengthen the relationship

In an attempt to maintain their authority, many parents are tempted to carry out conflicts in exhausting power struggles. Understandable! The better solution: to transform differences into a constructive argument.

Firstly, this means moderating the discussion so that they get to know each other better. And secondly, to reach an agreement together that both can accept. Both strengthen the relationship.

Often it takes a lot of explanations and a lot of listening, and sometimes one or the other horse trade, but mostly you get together somehow.

Another plus: The honest exchange of contrarian views not only strengthens the closeness between parent and child, but he also prepares the child for how it can use conflicts in the future to strengthen important relationships.

According to Pickhardt, a good message to the youth in matters of disagreement would be: "I want you to know that I stand firm, where I need to be, that I am compliant, where I can be, that I answer all your questions and always want to hear what you have to say.?

Parents take an interested approach to the adolescent because they teach the child: mom and dad do not always agree with me, but when it comes down to it, they are there for me.