Each age of a child presents different challenges and different worries. Some stages of youth are going to be more worrisome to parents than other stages. The teenage years are a time for more worry than most. Parents with teens know why they are starting to turn gray, and it is not because of their age. Let’s take a look at some of the things moms and dads worry about with their teenagers:
Sleep. Many teens get into a cycle of very little sleep. In fact, for many teens going to bed after midnight and getting up between six and seven is very common. They have school they have to get up for in the morning, and they have friends, homework, and online lives that keep them up late into the night. As a parent you worry if your child is getting the sleep they need.
Healthy. Many teens are constantly on the go with school, sports, or other extra curricular activities, as well as friends, etc. This can lead to a busy lifestyle where convenience becomes more important than health. So, they get little sleep, they eat pizza, chips, soda, refined and processed foods, and health tends to be the least of their concerns. This is a real worry, and one that can be addressed with planning and some attention.
Too much tv. Television is a part of life, and many parents worry that their teen is spending too much time watching Friends, The Office, Survivor, Alias, 24, Chuck, Life, Bionic Woman and countless other shows. If not monitored, your child could be living their life watching other people live, rather than getting out there and enjoying their own life.
Too much time online. With school classes going more and more to computers, and more and more assignments requiring online research, your child has legitimate reasons for being on the Internet. However, in addition to these scholastic reasons many teens spend hours online chatting, using programs such as Facebook and MySpace for social interactions, etc. The concern many parents have is whether or not their child spends too much time online.
Do people like them? This is a question parents have and worry about no matter what age their child is. It is hard to see your child be unpopular and friendless and it is natural to worry about whether or not they get along with other people.
Are they honest? When your child becomes a teen they get a lot more freedoms than they have when they are younger. They get their driver’s license, they go out with friends, and they have activities that take them away from home. With these freedoms comes a need for trust. You can’t always know what and who your child is doing and associating with. Thus you have to rely on what they say. This can lead to the worry of whether or not your child is being honest with you. Also, the pressures of school and the need to perform so they can get into good colleges, can be overwhelming, so you may wonder about their honesty in school. Money becomes more important, and nice things like clothes, etc. become important, so you may worry about their honesty at work, while shopping and so on.
There are real concerns that come when you have teens, and you can spend time and energy worrying, or you can spend that same time and energy teaching your children, holding them accountable, and helping them to be the best person they can be.