A person’s teenage years can be difficult. It is a tricky age group, as teenagers are no longer children but not quite ready for the responsibilities of adulthood.
When you add in raging hormones plus the stresses of school and general life, teenagehood can be very tumultuous.
Consequently, many teenagers respond to these pressures by isolating and distancing themselves from their families. As a result, many parents struggle to effectively form a relationship with their teenage children.
If you find yourself in this position, here are some top tips that allow parents to bond with their teenage sons.
How Do I Bond With My Teenage Son?
There are lots of different techniques for bonding with teenage sons. You should bear in mind that every son is different. Therefore, you must think about what activities are most suitable for your child. Here are some of our ideas:
Find Fun Activities
Even if you and your son have different interests, there is likely some common ground. Common activities that teenagers can enjoy include going to the cinema, watching a sporting event, and attending a theme park.
Many male teenagers also enjoy activities such as paintballing and rock climbing. Sports are particularly popular with teenage boys, so you should be able to find a sport that they appreciate.
If you think that your child might enjoy any of these activities, you should offer to try them together. Even if you are not the largest fan of these pursuits, you can likely find a common interest, such as crafting.
During these activities, you can have fun together. They allow you to talk to one another, spend time together, and make some memories.
Develop Listening Skills
As mentioned, teenagers can face a lot of issues in their daily lives. To help your teenage son, you should make it clear that you are there to listen. Even if your child just wants to have a basic conversion, set time aside to talk to them.
It can be hard for teenage sons to reach out to you in a society that often shuns males who express emotions. Yet, if you make it clear that you are always ready to listen to your child, they can seek you if necessary.
These conversations can be a simple way of building a close familial bond.
Have Food Together
Everyone loves food! Decades ago, families would always eat meals together, especially in the evenings. However, the chaos of modern life has meant that these family mealtimes are less common.
If you wish to improve your relationship with your teenage son, then organize a family meal. One way of doing this is by setting a day of the week to always sit together as a family. For instance, you might choose to always spend Wednesday dinner times together.
You can either eat in or eat out. One of the benefits of eating in is that you can even get your son involved with the preparation of the meal. After all, cooking can be a brilliant bonding technique.
Alternatively, if you prefer eating out, you can find fun topics to talk about with your son at the restaurant.
Use Physical Affection
Physical affection can be hard for men to express, especially during their teenage years. Yet, parents should attempt to overcome these social boundaries surrounding masculinity and embrace forms of physical affection, such as hugging and high-fiving.
Research has found that these simple signs of affection can boost a person’s self-esteem.
Of course, you should not engage in these signs of affection unless your child is comfortable with it. While many teenage sons might not appreciate a hug, some will.
If your child is not a fan of hugging, perhaps you can routinely give them high fives to show that you are giving them attention.
Complete Volunteer Work Together
Volunteering for a worthy cause not only helps people in need, but can also benefit the volunteers. This is because it makes you feel accomplished and good about yourself. Furthermore, it can establish a positive connection between volunteers.
There are lots of volunteering opportunities in towns and cities, so be sure to find one that appeals to you and your son. For example, if you both like being outdoors, you can participate in a litter pick.
Meanwhile, if your son has a passion for cooking, you should consider volunteering in a soup kitchen.
Give Your Child Space
While it is important for parents to be involved in their child’s development, overly attentive parents will merely annoy teenage sons. They will need space and time to themselves. This is particularly vital because it gives them a sense of privacy.
If your son says that they want to spend some time alone, don’t force your presence on them. Instead, respect their privacy and keep your distance. When they have finished the alone time, you can continue to bond with your son.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Which Bonding Activity is Best For Me?
Any of our suggestions can work effectively. On the other hand, you should think about what is best for your specific situation. For example, if you are trying to find an activity for you and your teenager to engage in, consider what activities they enjoy. After all, forcing them into an activity that they don’t like won’t make you any closer with your child.
Why is it Important to Spend Time With Children?
Spending time with your child develops close relationships. This is because you will know your child better through this time. Moreover, spending time in your busy life with a child demonstrates that you care for them, thus enhancing their self-esteem and feeling of belonging. Even if you have a busy routine, you must make time for a child.
Modern parenting can be hard, particularly when sons are going through their difficult teenage years. It’s fairly normal to experience difficulties when bonding with children during these years (See Also Parenting A Teenager With Reactive Attachment Disorder).
Thankfully, there are lots of methods that you can use to enhance these relationships. With any luck, you will now be emotionally closer to your teenage son!