There are many reasons why intelligent, well-behaved children become teenagers riddled with anxiety, lethargy and depression, and full of resistance and rebellion.
One of the most common and overlooked is that these kids are faced with the biggest and scariest challenge in their lives and they’re afraid they can’t succeed. So they hide behind selfishness and narcissism, and turn on their parents, their schools and anyone else they can in order to avoid the real issue.
The frightening issue is, “Can they make it in the real world?”
Naturally, since many teens are not sure if they’re smart enough, pretty enough, athletic enough or strong enough, they get anxious. Naturally, since they know the cowardly moments they’ve given into, the evil thoughts they’ve harbored and the bad things they’ve done, they worry that there may be something deficient or wrong in them. Naturally, many withdraw into lethargy and depression, and then lash out to cover up their fear.
Stop fighting the easy fights.
- It’s easy to blame everyone else who hasn’t given them everything. It’s easy to give up and turn on their parents with negativity, sarcasm, arrogance, harassment, bullying and abuse.
- It’s easy to try to beat their parents into submission, into giving more and more stuff, giving more and more chances, negotiating endlessly and never applying consequences that really matter. Many parents hope that if they keep giving and they cater to their children’s excuses, someday their little darlings (no matter how old) will finally see the light and become hard-working, responsible, polite, caring adults.
- These fights are easy because they’re against loving parents who will eventually give in.
But these easy fights take up everyone’s time and energy, and enable teenagers to avoid the important and necessary fight, which ultimately must be fought successfully in order for that child to become a fully functioning and successful human adult.
Fight the hard fight: There is no other way to grow up.
- Help your children fight against a world that tests them to see if they have what it takes to be successful adults. Help them face the most difficult challenge that the world poses. This is the hard fight because the world doesn’t care about them and their feelings. The world is interested only in results.
- Help your children by focusing them on the fight they really need to fight. Don’t let the argument remain focused on you. Keep the focus where it belongs. “Do you have the resolve, resilience and relentlessness to succeed against the world?”
- The fight is against their own fear and cowardice. Their confidence and self-esteem will follow their successes in facing this challenge. Every challenge they face successfully will increase their confidence, esteem and energy to tackle greater challenges.
The fight against the world takes more energy and determination than giving up and whining and complaining.
Of course, we know 20-70 year-olds who are still bullied by their fears, still lashing out because they weren’t given enough, still a waste of potential for all those who love them.
The best way to learn how to help your teen fight the hard challenge is to hire Dr. Ben for personalized coaching and counseling so you can:
- Develop the strength, courage, will and determination to be and to act your best resolutely, diligently and effectively.
- Develop a plan and master the skills necessary to create the bully-free life your spirit has always hungered for.
Read case study #6 in “How to Parent Bully-Proof Kids.” Also, read my new Kindle book, “How to Stop Sneaky Bullies.” Since all tactics depend on the situation, call me at 1-877-8Bullies for expert coaching by phone or Skype.