Failed again… Overreacted for the second time this week, not a great achievement.

Why is parenting teenagers so hard at times? And I am the one who has spent the last 7 years trying to understand teenage behaviour and how to manage it so why do I seem to have the knack of upsetting my daughter this week by overreacting?

Unfortunately, sometimes it is just how it is but the guilt of not handling something well with your teenager takes a little more getting over. Particularly when it happens twice in 3 days.

The problem is we can all justify our own behaviour and blame the other person, however, usually there is a trigger either in our world or in theirs. If I am honest, behind my overreaction was fear and wanting to protect her – being afraid for the consequences of some of her decisions/lack of decisiveness and I suppose hormones are also a reliable source of blame as is this time of year… but it still isn’t an excuse.

Whatever the reasons, I just didn’t handle the conversation well.

Learning to manage family emotions is probably one of the hardest things to learn as a parent. It all comes down to our ability to regulate our emotions because we can’t change someone else all we can do is change our reaction to them, easier said than done as I have found out this week.

Learning to stay calm and not react despite everything going on is hard but unless we, as parents, learn to do this, our teenagers will start modelling our behaviour and we don’t want this to be an unintended consequence of not managing our own emotions. 

I know it isn’t easy but I do know that talking to other parents helps which is why my Parenting Café on 27 January will be looking at managing their emotional reactions and learning to stay calm, to book your place please go to:

About Ruth James

I am a mum with 3 daughters who runs workshops for parents of teenagers. In 2019 I launched the Taunton Parenting Cafe and will be developing new and innovative workshops to support and encourage parents of children from 9yrs+
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