What To Do If You Don't Like Your Kids' Friends
Every parent eventually faces this dilemma and if it hasn't happened already, it probably will at some point: the moment you don't like one of your child's friends.
What do you do?
It's true that friends can have an enormous influence during the time of adolescence, and so choosing your friends at this point does matter….
A number of studies have also indicated kids who begin to display disruptive behavior increase when they hang out with other teenagers who engage in dangerous behavior.
Adolescence, is a time when family influence diminishes and peer influence increases, so watch closely who your kid chooses as a friend.
Often there can be a number of factors involved kids hang out with friends who can be a negative influence, but the following 3 points are important to address.
Parent Relationships Are Not Strong
Teens will run away from conflict in the family home. So parents, we have to make sure there is more unity at home.
If there a lack of happiness in the family home teens will only look for an escape.
A Lack Of Self-Esteem
This is the age where teenagers are looking for acceptance in the world. They are attracted by their peers if they tend to exhibit social power or a confidence.
No Positive Adult Role Models For The Child
Teens need positive adult relationships to help guide them through these years. A positive adult model could be a family friend, and someone your kid admires.
According to CNN recently,
The mentioned the following from Parenting advocate, Sue Scheff and author of the book “Wit's End: Advice and Resources for Saving Your Out-of-Control Teen,”
Sue encourages parents to ask questions such as “what do they have in common with their friend and what do they like to do together?”
“I always tell parents it is best to have the conversations before confrontations take place,” said Scheff. “Staying calm, showing a genuine interest in their friends, even if you don't care for them, will show your child you are respecting him (or) her.”
She added, “Gradually, you have to point out that friends don't bring other friends down, especially if your child is slipping in their grades, getting in trouble, etc.”
As parents, we know the stakes can be high when our child befriends someone whom we believe could be a danger. Recent surveys quantify how damaging those friendships can be.
Teens with friends who do drugs and drink alcohol are more likely to do the same, according to a 2011 survey sponsored by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the National Institutes of Health.
A survey by ParentFurther.com found that only 10% of teens said they had not been influenced by peer pressure and 46% of teens said they teased somebody because their friends were teasing that person.
Scheff, who works with parents of teens who are engaging in high risk behaviors, said there is another side to this issue: Sometimes your own child is the problem, and that is not so easy to accept.
“If your child is hanging with a less than desirable crowd, your child might be part of things you don't want to face either but need to,” said Scheff. “It is so frustrating when parents say, ‘Not my child. It's his friends.' “
You can read more from this article at CNN
Another study recently indicated the need for more positive parenting. It found that teenagers that have positive relationships with their parents are 60 percent less likely to engage in delinquent activities.
The bottom line. Parents need to focus on being positive. It is so important to talk as a family and find activities that you all have in common, but the most important tool to possess as a parent is to be able to ‘listen' to your kid. It is more powerful than any advice or criticism you might consider to offer.
What would you do if you didn't like one of your child's friends? Let us know your thoughts on this? We'd Love to hear from you
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Main Photo by Erin Nekervis