We are sharing tips on How to Handle Bad Influences in Your Teen’s Life. This can be extremely troublesome when you want the best for your teens. This is especially tough when they are not seeing the whole picture. Have your teens ever had friends that are bad influences, that you wish would just take a hike out of your son or daughter's life?
Trying to put a complete stop to your teens hanging out with them can cause damage to your relationship with your kids. Here are a few solutions that can help with these influences, and will keep from damaging your teenager’s relationship with you and help them have success in dealing with the pressures of bad influences.
How to Handle Bad Influences in Your Teen’s Life:
Parenting is hard from day one, but these teen years can be a whole new world of responsibility as a parent. Below are some basic ways you can help handle those not so great influences in your kids lives, but still maintain that loving and open relationship you desire.
Struggling to reach your kid? Check out our post with Ways to Connect with Your Teenage Son!
Reiterate your expectations
Your teenager already knows right from wrong and knows when their friends are making poor decisions. Remind them what can happen if they make those poor decisions, that can have a lasting impact on future friends, schooling, and their entire future. Talk with them on what a true friend looks like.
You can share with them things like this article on the Dangers of Teenage Vaping to show them why you have those expectations. It's not just about a parent being in control, but about you wanting what is ultimately the best for your child.
Have them make the decision themselves
Telling your teenagers that they are not allowed to hang out with their friends that have poor behavior will not go well. They will begin to resent you and perhaps go behind your back and defy you anyways because they feel controlled.
Let them know that some of the poor choices that their friends are making are taking them down a road that they themselves don’t want to go down. Allow them to make that decision themselves. Your words will echo in their ears the next time their friends do something foolish.
Teaching responsibility for their actions and how to make the right decisions is just one of the things to teach your kids before they go to college. Why not start early?
Communicate with your kids
When teenagers are hanging out with other young adults that are bad influences, they themselves will begin shutting down as if their hiding something from you. Just be there for your teens and talk about anything, opening up conversations that they can bring up their friends when they’re ready.
Befriend your kid’s friends
Instead of avoiding your teen’s friends, get to know them. They have needs that might not be getting met at home as far as parenting goes, and they might need an adult that they can trust. When they are around you and your family, they will see how they ought to behave, instead of trying to act cool all the time.
It’s easy to criticize something that is bothering us with just about anything. Yet, criticizing your teen’s friends will just cause them to shut down and not want to talk about it anyways. They might even get defensive and feel like they need to take sides.
Again, don’t keep your teens from their friends, but you may need to set a limit on how often they are surrounding themselves with poor behavior. Have them hang out in a public place where they are less likely to act so poorly in front of other adults.
Allow your home the hangout spot
If you are concerned that your kids might end up to no good with bad influencing friends, what better way to monitor it, then by inviting their friends over to make a safe haven for them? This also gives you more peace of mind.
We have even included our son's friends on vacations we plan. I have some good tips for planning a Spring break trip for your teen. By showing your kids that their friends are welcome and important to you also, it will help them feel more secure and less likely to go outside that group of quality friends.
Let teachers know your concern
Maybe you need to address your concerns with their teachers at school. Their teachers spend more time with them each day than you do, and can fill you in on any of their concerns also.
Your circle of friends
Let's be honest, you probably have grown-up friends that might not be the best role-model for your kids. You might need to address this with your friends that you are trying to raise kids to behave in a way that is contradicted with their behavior. This can get hairy, I know. Maybe you just need to distance yourself from the bad influence. Your teens are watching what kind of friends you allow into your world.
These are a number of ways that you can help with handling bad influences in your teenager’s life. Which ones did you find helpful? If you have a teenager that has friends that are up to no good continuously, what boundaries have you set up that works for you?