How to Maintain a Healthy Relationship with your Family
When you enter your teen years and are trying to find yourself while still enjoying your childhood while it lasts, it is easy to push out the people who have been there since day one… your family.
A relationship has to be a two-way connection, make sure you and your family are both putting in enough effort. As much as everyone likes to blame the child, broken relationships can just as easily come from the other end not wanting to associate with them.
Of course, this is not the case for everyone but it is for a lot of people, so here is how to maintain a healthy relationship with your family:
A parent/child relationship is one of the most important relationships you will ever have, but it can also be one of the hardest to maintain. It doesn’t have to be this way through. Here are 3 main things to keep in mind:
Keep communication lines open
Finding yourself comes with a lot of insecurity, anxiety and fear, and at the end of the day, the best feeling in the world is knowing you have someone in your corner to talk to and to fight for you when it all seems too much to handle on your own.
Yes you have friends that will back you up, and yes you might think they can help, but they are also teens, and they are also trying to figure everything out. But think about it this way, if you pop a tire on your car, it doesn’t matter how much manpower you have, if no one there knows how to properly change it, you’re never going to be able to put it on.
Your parents have been through their teen years and made it out the other side so they’re going to be your best bet when you need help with something because chances are they’ve been there and done that. So, make sure you are able to have conversations with your parents without judgement from either side.
(Note for the family: a lack of communication between you and your child is just as much your fault as it is theirs, notice how I said without judgement from either side.)
Respect is key
I know you might think your parents are strict, or overprotective, or boring, or anything else that makes you lose your respect for them, but majority of the time they know what they are talking about and are just trying to do what is right for you.
On the other hand, it is important that your family respects you too. Remind them that you respect their opinion, but you are a person who can make decisions for yourself as well. Because at the end of the day they aren’t the ones who have to live with the tattoo that you decided was ‘a good idea at the time’ for the rest of their lives and mistakes are part of growing up.
So, respect your parents’ opinions to a certain degree, respect their authority in your life and respect them as people (and make sure your parents respect you too).
This goes hand-in-hand with respect. Trust is the building blocks for any healthy relationship. You need to trust that your parents are there for you and only want what’s best for you. If you want them to trust you to be sensible and make good choices you have to trust that they will make good choices for you too. You may think you have it all figured out and you know what’s right for you but usually, you don’t know the half of it.
Another thing to make sure of is that your parents know you aren’t a child and you can actually make sensible decisions and most of the time you do know what is good for you and what isn’t. But on the occasion, you don’t know what you are doing remember it is much easier to just ask someone that has been there then find out its bad the hard way!
If you are lucky enough to have siblings you will know they are just as much a blessing as they are a curse. Someday they are going to be the aunt or uncle to your kids (if you have them) so maintaining a relationship with them is equally important!! As well as keeping the above things in mind also remember:
You were once their age
Admittedly it can be harder to stay close to younger siblings then it is with older siblings but it doesn’t matter if they are one year younger/older or five years younger/older than you were once their age. You certainly weren’t as sensible and mature as you like to claim when you were their age (I’m definitely guilty of this!!).
I know it can feel like they are holding you back, but just like you need your parents to guide you through the next chapters of your life, they need you to help them!! Sure they can ask your parents but as someone much closer in age to them they need the help to decipher the world around them.
They were your first friend
I know my two siblings were my first and bestest friends before I met other people and that’s the case with most people too. Obviously, that close friendships can get looser over time when your interests change and you make friends at school and other places, but always keep in the back of your mind that they were always there when you didn’t have anyone else!
Have you been able to maintain a healthy relationship with your family as you have grown?