When children’s teenage years arrive, your kid might not even want to talk to you as much. Suddenly their talkative childhood changes into reluctant teenage years. They no longer tell you what is going on in their life, and this can become very difficult.
Interestingly, teenagers usually just don’t want to talk to their parents or other family members. With their friends, however, they often do share their deepest thoughts and feelings. Let’s read about why teenagers avoid talking about their feelings.
Reasons Teenagers Avoid Talking About Their Feelings
There are several reasons why teenagers might avoid talking about their feelings.
- For one, they don’t want to stress anyone out. Teens can be very intuitive, even when they don’t appear to be paying attention, and know when someone has reached their limit. They don’t want to burden them with anything else, so they keep things inside or act them out in harmful ways.
- Second, they don’t want anyone to fix their feelings. They believe nobody can fix their feelings or the cause of the occurred situation, but they also don’t want anyone fighting their battles.
- Additionally, they fear getting judged. By sharing their feelings, they reveal themselves and are more prone to judgement of others.
- In addition to that, they think adults won’t get it. That is the universal gap between adults and teenagers. You might even recall feeling this way about your own parents or family members.
- Lastly, some teenagers may simply not be aware of how they’re feeling and so they can’t talk about it.
Reasons to Talk About Emotions
It’s very important to talk about emotions, if you can talk about your feelings your kid will learn from you. To make it clear how important it is to talk about feelings, let’s look at some reasons to talk about emotions.
Not Expressing Feelings Creates an Unpleasant Feeling
Feelings arise automatically, but not without reason. This automatic activation allows you to become aware that something is happening to which you want to react. However, if you ignore this feeling and pretend it is not there, you disapprove of the part of yourself that created that feeling. This disapproval creates a struggle in which doubt, and even more anger may arise. As long as you do not express the initial feeling, this emotion will always remain in the background.
Not Expressing Your Feelings is Exhausting
Not expressing your feelings creates an inner struggle that consumes a lot of energy. Every time you feel certain feelings, you don’t express them or only after carefully filtering them. It is an exhausting process and you do not receive true acceptance. Real acceptance of who you are can only be received when you are who you are.
Why Your Teenager Isn’t Talking to You
It can be frustrating when your child isn’t talking to you, let’s look at some reasons why your teenager isn’t talking to you.
Asking questions is an obvious way to encourage communication. Sometimes parents can ask too many questions. Teenagers experience being bombarded with questions from their parents all day. Eventually, it gets exhausting to constantly answer your questions. Try to just have a conversation, and when they are eager to tell you about their day, they will.
It’s the parent’s responsibility to teach children everything, and that responsibility is often taken seriously. Sometimes parents feel the need to turn everything into some kind of life lesson or lecture. It’s typical behavior, but you have to admit it can be irritating. It’s sometimes best to just relax and let the teenagers learn their own life lessons without lecturing them.
Besides, getting a lecture isn’t a fun way of learning anything. Teenagers often tune out lectures, and they will stop telling you anything. Especially if they believe you will turn whatever they say into another life lesson. Find more inventive ways to teach your children the important lessons you want them to learn, and they will appreciate it.
Validating Their Feelings
Teenagers can experience intense and often irrational emotions. When parents observe these strong emotions, they frequently dismiss them as ridiculous. Because they are immediately told to stop feeling that way, their teenagers stop sharing their feelings.
A better approach is to validate those big teenage feelings, even if they appear completely insane. When you tell them that it’s okay to feel whatever way they’re feeling, they feel understood.
You’re Not Noticing the Positive Things They Do
According to a Harvard study, employees need a 6:1 positive-to-negative feedback ratio to perform at their best. That’s six pieces of positive feedback for every one piece of negative feedback. It is important to give the same amount of attention to your teenager. Take note of the good they do. Praise them for being nice, thank them for making their bed, and encourage them to work hard on their upcoming test. Find any excuse you can to tell them you’re aware of the good they’re doing.
And if you do have to give them some negative feedback, frame it as positively as possible. When you give your teen the positive feedback they crave, your relationship with them will improve.
You Don’t Trust Them
Give your child more trust than you believe they deserve. If they know you trust them, they will do everything in their power to keep that trust. However, if they believe you don’t trust them and have unnecessary rules in place as a result, they will most likely go behind your back and do it anyway. And they’re not going to tell you about it.
Teens appreciate your trust, and they intend to keep it. Give your child more trust than you believe they deserve. If they know you trust them, they will do everything in their power to keep that trust. However, if they believe you don’t trust them and have unnecessary rules in place as a result, they will most likely go behind your back and do it anyway. And they’re not going to tell you about it.
If you are wondering how to get a teenager to talk about their feelings, Safes has a great blog post on this. Safes is a parental control app that offers a lot of great features to monitor and control your child’s online behavior. Their blogs offer many tips and tricks to make parenting easier.