By Mira Khatib
Pause for a second and reflect on this “Has my teen outsourced his or her dreams and aspirations?”
The reality may surprise you! One would say how can anyone outsource his or her future? How can anyone relinquish their own desires, own ambitions, own goals? The answer is really simple, please read more with an open mind.
How dependent is your teen on you the parent or you the care taker? Observe your teen level of dependency on you, on friends or others and you will note how much he or she has outsourced their future to you the parent and as likely to others when they leave your household.
Ask yourself another question; do you see your teen engaged without you having to continuously push, urge, or even scold him/her? Does your teen have the drive, the passion to excel or to be different? Does your teen have a hobby “other than playing video games or watching YouTube or surfing the net”? When was the last time you saw your teen pick up a ball or a bat and engaged in an outdoor activity? When was the last time you witnessed your teen engage with friends in an intellectual discussion? Does your teen show any curiosity in events impacting the world we live in?
It is never late to re-calibrate the lives of our teens and set them on the path to know who they are and instill in them the passion, the motivation to excel and take charge of their future.
Ask yourself when was the last time you sat with your teen and discussed their goals in life? More importantly, what plans do they have to achieve these goals? And what are they doing to realize their goals? When was the last time you got engaged in a discussion were your teen has shared their dreams and how eager he/she is keen to achieve great things in life; do you allow them to dream big?
How involved are you in supporting your teen to flourish; giving him/her the comfort to try and keep trying even if they fail?
Sadly; many of us are growing apart from our teens; we think we know them when in many cases we don’t recognize or understand what our teens want from us and want from life? Many teens are lying as a way to escape from the burdens of managing their daily affairs. They are avoiding making the right choices and opting for the easy ones. Whenever something goes wrong or not as planned or as what the parents aspire and expect, lying is the answer. Some teens are resolving to lies to mask their feelings and their fears from failing.
As Parents know it’s never too late. Showering our kids with money, or bailing them when they are in trouble or discouraging them to do things fearing failure is the exact opposite of protecting them. Let’s not outsource parenting to the Internet. Tough love; open communication and seeing the signs of when or if your teen is lying are critical to successful parenting. Only then our teens will be independent and own their dreams and their future.