Now, it’s easy enough for you to say what you hate about your parents, but what kind of relationship do you want to have with them? We talked to a few students and did a little research and we found out quite a few interesting things.
Teenagers want, above all, a parent who will listen to them without interruption. They want someone who can sit down with them at the end of a long day and just talk. They want a parent who can give them good advice and who they can trust. They want to be able to tell their parents everything they tell their best friend. They want an open, honest relationship.
Secondly, teenagers want parents who don’t nag. They want a relationship where they don’t have to be constantly doing well or doing the best. They want someone who will congratulate them when they’re on the top and console them when they’re at the bottom- not someone who will interrogate them as to why they failed that one history test. They also want parents who can remember what it was like to be a teenager. They want a parent with empathy, who understands the kind of challenges we face everyday and doesn’t judge, but merely helps where necessary.
Funnily enough, a few people said they wanted parents who would punish them. When pressed further, these people said that they wanted parents in the house who would care enough to judge if whatever they were doing was good or bad, and if bad, be present enough to recognise this and punish it. This makes more sense. We all want parents who are around, don’t we? No one wants to be in a house where the dad has a hangover and is sleeping all the time or the mom creeps out every day to go and get high. We want parents who are present with us and care enough for us not to destroy themselves so they can be there for us.
So, now that we know what kind of relationships we want to have with our parents, we can start working towards building these relationships with them.