As a parent, it is common to deal with teenagers who have problems with their attitudes at times, get frustrated or embarrassed when put into different situations, show signs of anger and act out by using unnecessary language. However, there is a line that should be drawn between typical teenage behavior and destructive behavior that can be dangerous to themselves and to others around them.
Helping your teen understand recognize and address destructive behavior will assist them in determining if friends and family are causing harm to themselves or to others and may also prevent them from partaking in these types of dangerous behaviors themselves. Simply take advantage of these tips that will help you to talk to your teens about destructive behavior and how to recognize it as well as handle it.
Understanding Destructive Behaviors
It is important for your teens to know that even those who suffer from destructive behaviors such as self-harm or mutilation, eating disorders, substance abuse and promiscuity should be treated no differently than those who do not participate in this type of behavior. High-stress, boredom, social anxiety and mental disorders can be the cause of teenagers around the world participating in destructive behavior. Teens should understand the risks of these behaviors and consequences that they may have. While some of these acts can be prevented because they are due to boredom, others may simply not be able to stop themselves from participating in the acts due to the way that they’re feeling and un-diagnosed medical problems. Depression, anxiety and stress are concerns that should not be taken lightly.
Recognizing Destructive Behaviors
Help your teenagers to recognize destructive behaviors that their friends may have so that they are able to avoid potentially dangerous situations and assist them in seeking help for their problems. While some behaviors may just be common teenage experiments and experiences, others should not be ignored. Teach them to recognize what is dangerous and what is not. For example, if you notice that your friends are acting differently than usual such as showing signs of depression or stress, look for warning signs that they could be harming themselves in one way or another. Cuts on their wrists and arms could be signs of self-mutilation while over-use of the bathroom especially after meals could be a sign of an eating disorder. Before calling them out on their destructive behaviors, it is important to ensure that you have recognized all of the warning signs and are not jumping to conclusions without any proof.
Addressing Destructive Behaviors
Helping your teens to address destructive behaviors can be extremely difficult, but also necessary. In fact, by addressing a situation in its early stages, you can help to prevent major injuries from occurring and may even save a life. Teens should address the situation calmly by discussing it openly and calmly with their friend or someone that they can trust. If they feel as though someone that they care about is in danger, tell them to seek help from a trustworthy adult immediately that can help to handle the situation.
Now that you know how to help your teenager understand, recognize and address destructive behavior, it’s time to sit down and have an honest and open conversation with them about their life, their choices and their choices of friends. Unfortunately, at times, no matter how much you talk to your children, they may end up disobeying and even end up on the wrong side of the law. If you find yourself in this situation, read more about retaining an experienced