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A Healthy Parent-Child Relationship: Is it Just the Teenage Dream?

Updated: Nov 8, 2023

What it means to love and be our parents

It was the year 2010… Rumours were swirling around how the world we came to know and love was going to end in two years. And then, Katy Perry goes out to release a single reminiscing a significant moment in all our lives — being a teenager, bringing back nostalgia and a whirlwind of emotions all at once. While we were all bobbing our heads to this catchy song, did it also remind you of who you were having these kinds of moments with? Friends and first love, for sure! But certainly not with our parents, am I right?

In today’s blog, we will touch on a topic that will also evoke a variety of emotions for some if not all – parent-child relationships.

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Children will always seek out their parents, first and foremost for warmth, advice, and support.

Adolescence is when your kid begins to rely on greater warmth, direction, and support from others like their friends or even romantic relationships. As a parent, the gradual shift from being your child’s “best friend” to seeing them distance themselves from you is going to be heartbreaking on your end. Thus, stems a need for you to look for any solution to this problem.

Well, thank the lucky heavens since this blog is made just for that! Let’s start from the beginning, shall we?

Where it All Changed

During puberty, the body's natural development process changes, which is also accompanied by different changes in the brain. Some of these bodily changes are caused by sex hormones produced throughout the body, while others are caused by physical and emotional changes.

Since intuition and critical thinking skills improve, our children realise at their discretion that they have greater duties.

As a result, they yearn for independence and have the need to solve problems on their own. They begin to appreciate their thoughts and actions. Teens also begin to dream about the future (e.g. college, career, and marriage). These feelings frequently accumulate and produce problems for the teenager, who will then attempt to deal with these issues without assistance from us – the parents.

The Dynamic Connection Between Our Parents

Now in the 21st century and being parents ourselves, the relationship between a parent and a child during their teenage years still remains a 'parent vs teenager' one. These are formative years in their lives, and they need to know that we are there for them and are willing to recognize that they have a young adult who needs their respect and advice. What happens if we still view our teenagers as opponents when things go 'wrong'?

Thoughts of it being the child's fault.

Parents can't help but think "How could this have happened, how dare she do something like this"; "What will people say"; "This is not how we have raised you"; "You are ruining our family name." and the list goes on.

These thoughts elicit feelings of rage, disbelief, and even humiliation and remorse.

And then, making rash decisions based on these feelings and emotions, exerting the need to “put them in their place” through punishments like gadget confiscations, grounding, and limits.

This type of “thinking” often leads to straining the parent-child relationship, leaving behind an angry parent and a defenceless teenager.

Every day might feel like a battlefield in a household with your teenager, even about the little things. It must be hard to continue loving and guiding your child as you always have because of this. On top of that, you are forced to make compromises while having the patience of a saint for your connection to remain strong.

The Importance of Parental Love and Connection

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Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) researchers discovered that adolescents who report having excellent relationships with their parents have better long-term health outcomes.

The findings of the study imply that investments in enhancing parent-child relationships can contribute to enhancing general health especially mentally and sexually, while also lowering substance use in young adulthood.

Parental love is defined as a child's parents' warmth, affection, care, comfort, concern, nurture, support, acceptance, or love.

When a parent kisses, hugs, praises, compliments, or says pleasant things to or about their child, it is obvious that they love them.

A good parent-child relationship is especially crucial for children since it affects their emotional security and psychological well-being.

A recent study showed new perspectives on how to make kids feel loved. They described warmth as the amount of appreciation, sympathy, and love the parents had that day for their adolescent. Whereas, conflict was the level of hostility and stress between them.

Every evening, teens were questioned on a single topic: how much their parents made them feel loved that day.

As a result, teenagers typically feel more loved on days when their parents are more affectionate and less loved on days when they are having arguments. This is to be anticipated. The intriguing discovery? Parental conflict didn't affect how teens felt loved as much on days when parents were more affectionate. In other words, showing your child affection and warmth seemed to safeguard them from the costs of conflict.

Building Healthy Relationships: How Life Coaching Can Help

Life coaching provides a variety of highly effective ways to assist parents in developing positive and harmonious connections with their children. Parents may improve communication, create boundaries, and foster emotional intelligence and resilience by using these approaches.

It all starts with the Parent

In some cases, children require counselling, but therapy for parent-child relationships must always begin with the parents. A life coach can provide impartial feedback on your parenting approach and offer adjustments.

As parents, you must educate yourself about your child. A life coach can assist you in identifying issues that your child may be unable to communicate.

Parents must understand their part in initiating or maintaining a good relationship with their children.

This begins with a critical examination of our own behaviour. The same is true for our kids. A life coach will assist both parents and children in seeing all sides objectively and who benefits from it.

One of the reasons for troubled relationships is the near-complete absence of communication between parents and children. When you start talking, you begin to understand one another, and the tension begins to melt.

They need to be respected too.

You treat your children with respect when you listen to them, pay attention to what they say, and include them in key family choices. When you disagree with their choices and decisions, don't just dismiss them; explain why.

Furthermore, you can expect the following benefits from the guidance of a life coach:

  • Open and honest communication with your kids

  • Establishing and adhering to personal boundaries with them

  • Unconditional love and acceptance for one another

  • Acknowledge differences in opinion

  • Respectfully regard one another

  • Healing strained relationships

Parenting is a never-ending path of development and learning, and life coaching may be an invaluable tool in helping you improve your parenting skills.

Working with a life coach can provide you with vital insights, help you develop new tactics, and improve your parent-child relationships.

Aaron as a father himself, understands the various push-and-pulls of parenting. Book a FREE consultation with Aaron today to learn how he can assist you with your troubled parent-child relationship.


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