They don’t wear seat belts because they think they could never get into an accident. They don’t study for a test and then wonder why they earned a low grade.
As a parent, you can help your teen see that actions do have consequences. If you always step in to protect your teen from the consequences of his actions, odds are he’ll never learn to connect the two. Here are some ways to get the message through:
• If your teen oversleeps, don’t offer to drive her to school. Tell her, “I’m sorry, but actions have consequences. You’d better hurry up or you’ll miss the bus and have to walk.”
• If he’s put off working on a big paper until the last minute, don’t volunteer to type it. Say something like, “I’ll be glad to make you some coffee. Looks like you’re in for a late night.”
• When your teen does something positive, make sure you let your teen see the rewards of her behavior. Ife he washes the car (without nagging), you might reward her with a later curfew for a special event.
Helping teens learn that actions have consequences is one of the biggest challenges parents face. It’s also important as we help our sons and daughters move toward responsible adult behavior.
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