Boost their confidence

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Your child's body is changing and their hormones are all over the place. These changes can be scary for any teenager so they really need your help, even if they pretend they don't. Talk to them about puberty and explain that it's natural for their emotions to change along with their body.

Listen to them

Teenagers often feel misunderstood, so it's important to show them that their opinions count and you're there for them.

Talk to them when watching TV together or in the car. If you have other children make an effort to have regular time alone with your teenager so they have the opportunity to open up to you. Sometimes just listening is enough. If you disagree with them every time you talk, it will just end in tears. So try to keep your opinions to yourself.

Don't break their confidence, either. If they tell you a secret, keep it a secret, if possible.

Give them space

They're probably worried about their looks, the changes in their body, the strange feelings and emotions. They really need their privacy. So, respect that and knock before you go into their room. If they want to be on their own, let them have some time.

Let them make mistakes

If you're constantly running behind them clearing up their mess, they'll never learn. So don't interfere if they're having problems with friends or at school that you know they're capable of sorting out themselves.Talk to them, advise them, but let them work out the best solution.

Don't make empty threats

In the heat of the moment when you're arguing with your daughter because she wants to go out and you won't allow it, try not to threaten with a punishment you won't carry out. If you're having a row, try to take a deep breath, count to ten and tell her you'll talk about it when you've both calmed down.

Just walk away. If the argument gets really heated, just walk away. Your child may be trying to push you to see how far she can go. If you're not there, she can't argue and it may make her calm down.

Show an interest in their life

Ask about school and their personal life, but don't interfere too much.

You won't always agree

Your child isn't a clone of you. Encourage them to have their own opinions. Don't shout them down, and agree to disagree on some things.

- More help for letting your teen go

More help and advice

Continued below...

- Your teen and their mobile phone
- Ways to encourage their independence
- Teach children the value of money
- Teens and work: the facts

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