Never listens

Najia - posted on 02/13/2015 ( 3 moms have responded )

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My 15 year old boy loves to be alone with his cell and laptop.No time for family.Never listens to me for whatever I say.Tease his younger brother who is 9 .What to do.

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Mystery - posted on 02/14/2015

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Teenagers need chores at least 2 at most 5 because you don't want them to over spoiled or make it seem like you make them do everything and take away there laptop or phone and make a day when they don't have school a family night or family time Friday and Saturday are great for family night Saturdays and Sunday's are good for family time if he doesn't come pull him by the ear make him join leave his electronics behind get a game the family enjoys

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 02/13/2015

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Take away the electronics, and when you do allow use, monitor and time it.

Kerri - posted on 02/13/2015

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It sounds like you are feeling frustrated. Perhaps you used to feel closer to your 15-year old and you miss those days. Sometimes we feel a big sense of loss when our children become more distant. And of course you want to protect your younger son from the older son's teasing.

Here is my advice:

1) Do some true reflecting on why you want him to listen to you. Spend some serious time on this. Ask yourself: Why is it important to me that he listen? What EXACTLY are the messages I have for him that I want him to listen to? What is meaningful about listening? Do I really want him to 'listen' or is it more accurate to say I want him to 'obey'? If I want him to actually obey me, why is that so important to me? What am I afraid of? What if he doesn't listen or obey? What am I afraid will happen? What am I afrad that means about me? About me as a mother?

2) Listen to HIM. Our children actually learn about listening by being listened to. It's just like anything else in life. We learn how to do something by watching someone else model the skill. This likely will not be easy. It takes A LOT of practice. And your son may act like he doesn't want to tell you anything. That's okay. Practice reflecting back to him whatever he says to you. And don't say anything more!! Don't tell him what you think or what it reminds you of or give him advice or anything! Just reflect. If he walks in the door and says, "I am so hungry!" you could say something like, "hello food monster," or if he says, "I hate my math teacher," you could say, "Sounds like she makes you pretty angry." When we can reflect back what our teen says to us, it shows them that we are paying attention. Attention = love. If we do this enough, our teens will be able to notice that we care about them and about what they think and how they feel. And they will talk with us more. If instead of really paying attention to them we tell them what we think and what we want them to do and we complain or make demands, our teens will most certainly stop opening up to us.

3) Find someone else to listen to you. It's not your son's job. Find a good friend who you can share your worries with, your concerns, the confusion. Tell her about the different things you have tried with your son and with your family. A good friend can be a safe place to complain. You can be a good friend and listen to her complain too.

4) learn about adolescent development and brain development. This will help you understand that many things happening for teenagers are normal and biological and temporary.

5) read the book How To Talk So Teens Will Listen And Listen So Teens Will Talk.

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