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Showing posts from April, 2017

Parents, teens and trust: Are teens more likely to lie during adolescence?

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Last week I discussed a simple 'how-to-guide' when deciding on whether your child attend a party, gathering or sleepover. In the last paragraph I repeated what I have said many times before around adolescents not always telling their parents the truth and that even though you have to trust your child during this time, you just have to make sure it's not 'blind trust'. As I said, "do that and it's just plain stupid and potentially unbelievably dangerous!"

This statement received a fairly strong response from one person who posted the following on my Facebook page:

"I am disappointed to see this old chestnut rolling around in a place I generally regard as offering wise, evidence guided suggestions, "As I've said many times before, you can't trust an adolescent - they're going to tell lies and let you down - that's what they do!"

I call bulls***. I was a teacher in secondary schools for a decade and I have three adolescent …

A simple 'how-to-guide' when deciding on whether your teen should attend a party, gathering or sleepover

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Every parent wants their child to have friends and to 'fit in' with their peer group. Many Mums and Dads are terrified that their child may be socially excluded in some way, particularly if they themselves experienced some kind of rejection when they were young. With increasing awareness and concern around mental health issues, particularly around adolescence, this fear has only intensified in recent years and most parents would do almost anything to ensure their child is socially accepted and has a good group of friends.

That is where deciding whether or not your child should be able to attend a party, gathering or even a sleepover can become extremely difficult. On the one hand, you are thrilled that your son or daughter has been invited to an event and wants to go (i.e., they have a friend and are keen to interact with a social group), but at the same time you have questions such as will this be a safe place for them to go and how much do you really know about the people wh…

5 things parents should discuss with their teen before they leave homefor a sleepover, party or gathering

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If you allow your teen to attend a sleepover, party or gathering on a Saturday night, you've made a pretty big decision. They're going to be going to someone else's home (often someone you don't know particularly well) and they are going to socialise with other teenagers. Regardless of whether alcohol (or other drugs) are going to be involved - things can go wrong. Once you've told your teen they can go to wherever it is that they are going, your work doesn't stop there!

I've written about the importance of making decisions about how they get to the event and how they get home (as I've said many times, I believe this is the one non-negotiable in this area - you decide what happens here - not your child!), as well as talking about your expectations around behaviour, but it is also vital that, regardless of their age, your child should never leave home without a number of simple things being discussed. These are all around safety and planning and althoug…

"Take $100 out with you and stop drinking when you've spent that!" - a father's advice to his 16-year-old son around safer alcohol use!

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No-one can tell a parent how to deal with the alcohol issue when it comes to their children. Your child is precious to you and only you can make decisions about how to handle the 'if they drink, when and how many' questions ... If you believe that providing alcohol to your child is appropriate and that, in doing so, you are keeping them safer and they are learning how to drink responsibly, that is your business and no-one else's. As I have said many times before, the only problem I have is when parents impose their values on others and invite other people's children to events where alcohol will either be provided, permitted or tolerated - thus putting those parents who do not feel comfortable with their teen drinking in a very difficult position. That is incredibly unfair. That said, I think there are some extremely well-meaning parents who are trying to do the right thing when they provide alcohol to their teen who simply have no idea about how much they are handing …