As parents we need to get comfortable with the fact that no matter what we do, even if we were as controlling as we might fantasize we'd like to be, nothing short of locking our kids in their rooms will keep them completely safe. Once we really make peace with that, we're much more able to live with their need to explore the world and appreciate the gift we've been given to both come along for the ride and be their guide.
Parenting teens can be one of the most exhilarating and fulfilling stages of our parenting. As a recent empty nester, coach and parent educator I've become even more interested in what it means to parent teens. In my coaching practice I work with parents to create a positive relationship with their teen and help them live up to their vision of the "good enough" parent.
There are of course tons of books out there on the subject, but my newest favorite is The Good Teen, by Richard M. Lerner. What I particularly love about this book is his positive approach to raising teens, and his stance that identifying and building on their strengths will go a long way in helping them become the healthy and productive adults they're meant to be.
Based on the literature and my own experience I've compiled a list of guidelines that I hope parents will find useful.
Last, I was just interviewed on Dina Lynch Eisenberg's blog, This Marriage Thing talking about raising teens. Check out the site below (just be patient, the first few seconds record some technical difficulties) and scroll down to find the link to the podcast: