What do you do when your teenage daughter want open up to you when something is bothering her?
Vicki - posted on 06/24/2009
She may still be processing her thoughts and not ready to share, and that's OK. Like Angela just said, your daughter may be able to soothe herself, which is a beautiful thing. Sometimes our kids really do want to get something off their chest, but have a hard time saying it. I was like that as a teenager. For me, it was easier to talk if I was busy doing something with my hands. Is there an activity you guys can do together, like make a meal or plant a garden or something like that?
I try to make myself physically available to her and pay loving attention to her. I have to respect her right or preference to work through "it" in the way she wants to. It is important for her to learn to deal with some things without me. Self-soothing is an important ability that not everyone learns.
I don't have any teenage daughters yet (though I do have daughters) but it wasn't too long ago that I was one myself. I have been struggling with the whole thing a little just watching as my girls get older. I was raised by good parents, but... I never felt like I could share my heart with either of them because they hardly ever made time to be one-on-one with us kids. I mean, don't get me wrong. They showed their love to us and I love them both VERY much, but that's just how it was. We weren't a very emotionally connected family it seemed. They were busy and good parents, but I think getting daughters to open up takes a ton of trust. It also is something that starts way back when they're little. I think if my Mom was a part of my life in a big way ever since I was a little girl (also as a friend, not just my loving parent), I might have been able to talk about anything with her. I kept a lot to myself from my parents because I felt like they couldn't relate or because I felt I couldn't trust them because of their reactions in the past. I would encourage you to remain your daughter's parent, but become more and more her friend as she gets older and makes more adult decisions. Prayer is a big thing too. Sometimes as a mom myself now, it is easy to think my kids do things against me personally, when really they just need Jesus more than ever. And keeping their conversations/problems/concerns, etc. confidential is a biggie too! Husbands should be a part of what is going on, but if the daughter comes to you she shouldn't get dealt with by the Dad unless he feels he needs to step in. It's okay for Dad to know stuff, but the mother-daughter conversations should be between mom and daughter. Also, it shouldn't be spread to other moms who may know your daughter. That hurts trust too. :) :)
Shelly - posted on 06/21/2009
About the only thng you can so is pray that the Lord will help her get through what ever it is she is struggling with and then just let her know that you are there for her when she feels like she is ready ttalk about it...Make sure she understands that no matter what it is you are there and ready to help her...Just prepare yourself by praying that the Lord will give you the tools to deal with what ever it is she desides share with you and the trust that the Lord will keep her safe and secure in his peace...
LISTEN. Give her your undivided attention and just listen. There is not big thing you have to do. Most of the time there is NOTHING you can do to fix their issue but you can answer their questions and listen to them talk. That seems like a little thing but it's HUGE.
Anne - posted on 06/20/2009
Hi Deborah, Our daughters are now 21 and 25 but I remember when they were younger. Unfortunately we can not make our children talk to us when thy do not want to but we can let them know that you are there to listen. The Best thing you can do is she really does not want to talk is to let her know you are Praying for her. When our girls would not talk I would often go into their and Pray for them in their room. Our youngest daughter was not one to hug or want hugs. OUr oldest was the daughter that always wanted the hugs. Now that they are living in different states because o f College they will often call and ask me to Pray for them. Even now the youngest is not real talkative. If you have e-mail or texting you could text her or e-mail her to let her know you are there and will listen when she wants to talk. One thing I had to learn the hard way was they really did not want me to "fix" things, just listen and Pray.
Holly - posted on 06/20/2009
Spend some quality time with her. Take her shopping, have something to eat. Take a walk, just get alone with her so she is able to express herself. Let her know she can tell you anything. And you will not judge her or get angry. That you can work this out together. she'll soon be talking..
I usually let her know that I am here for her and she can openly (with respect) talk about whatever the situation is. I started doing this when my children were young and have continued keeping that door open for her. Sometimes I will set up a time for her and I to just talk about anything and everything but more so, she comes and talks with my hubby and I about things. If it is something of great concern it will be both my husband and I talking otherwise it is one or the other focusing on what is going on so that our daughter can draw the appropriate conclusion within herself. Praying with her also opens up those doors of what is happening in her life.
Traci - posted on 06/20/2009
Ohh and if it is something that you should be upset about tell her but do it discreetly and not meanly. that is the whole reason she is coming to you... i mean dont let something bad slide but dont let what she did completely take over.
Traci - posted on 06/20/2009
I dont have any teenagers but it wasnt that long ago that i was one.. I would make a comfortable surrounding for her and you to sit and talk... i would let her open up to you no matter what it is. I would have to say not to get mad at her because she is willing to open up to you and tell you what is on her mind. I know a lot of teenagers are afraid to open up because they are afraid to get into trouble. I would listen to her and take her news as open as you can... no matter what is said. I mean if you werent to listen to her and something was to happen you would be feel so terrible that you didnt stop and listen to her open up to you... Im sure there will be talking crying hugging crying laughing something.. but always been open and supportive. i hope at least part of this helps you.
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