We’ve all had moments walking away from a conversation with our teen thinking “that went nowhere….” But when it comes to the important conversations about critical topics like safety, drugs, alcohol and sex–it’s essential the conversation lands in a place where you feel comfortable as a parent.
To avoid important conversations leading on a path to nowhere, fill your teen’s trust bucket first.
If you like visualizations – you’ll love this!
Imagine that each moment you respect your teen’s boundaries, you get a drop in the trust bucket. Each moment you have a productive conversation – add a drop. Have a fun bonding experience? Add a drop!
This may seem silly, but the little positive moments truly add up and contribute to a greater mutual trust and understanding of each other. So when that really important conversation comes up with your 17-year-old daughter wanting to go on a weekend trip with her boyfriend and you just want to scream “NO!” – the trust will be there between the two of you to have a mature and calm conversation that doesn’t just result in her grabbing her keys and running out the front door.
Before you approach any weighty conversation that could lead to heightened emotions or conflicting ideas, stop and take inventory of your teen’s bucket. Is it full enough for their bucket to accept what you have to say?
I’m not saying these conversations will always be perfect or result in an agreement – but you will have more opportunities for those positive outcomes.