Addressing Conflicts Between Parents and Teenagers

family and teenagers and parenting

The teenage life- when one suddenly enters a new league. When one’s aspirations are driven by his own wish and peer influence. When one may start considering their parents as enemies. When one’s aspirations come into conflict with those of their parent’s.

This generation has paved way for uncontrolled and controversial debate and discussion on the link between teenagers and parents- the restrictions and expectations especially.


The data and content mentioned in this post is based on the views of surveyed and questioned teenagers of various ages themselves, what they feel about their parents as well as inputs from parents, their expectations, restrictions, ideologies and what they dislike in the teenage world.

To all children and parents reading this, don’t just let the points go over your head but rather acknowledge what your children or parents want from you.


The voice of teenagers:

  • Teenagers absolutely hate being compared to other cousins, friends or your local neighborhood’s Sharma Ji’s child. It lowers their self-esteem and is irrational.
  • Many children demand no restrictions on inter-sect and/or inter-racial marriages.
  • Overprotective nature and constant eavesdropping on the child’s social activity and chats. Children don’t mind you having a vague idea but please do recognize the fact that they have their personal life and their own circle. You wouldn’t let your child read your chats, would you? Of course, you wouldn’t, not because they are explicit, but because they’re personal. Same applies to them.
  • Prohibition of inter-gender communication and hangouts. What’s the point of this? The opposite gender is not a dangerous species that will kill us.  No one even follows this one seriously, they just start hiding their activities more and lead to a less-open and less-honest family set up.
  • Children hate it when parents want them to excel in every field and it’s worse when they want them to do so when your uncle’s ex-fish’s owner’s child is better than you.

When you place irrational restrictions, you are raising a rebellious child and that is inevitable. If you do imagine to prevent him from rebelling and actually following you- then you are raising a slave that fears you.


Teenager’s expectations and Acceptable Parental Controls

Rational Restrictions

  • The children don’t mind restrictions when they can be explained to them. No soul would like to follow a rule or command without knowing why. Furthermore, restrictions must be strategic, rational and explainable that can make the child self-aware, and develop his own self-control, will-power where he himself can differentiate between right and wrong.

Personal Life

  • Teenagers also demanded that parents don’t interfere in every single matter of their life- and even if they do [Which I believe, they should but-] in such a way that they only provide pros, cons, and outcomes of said decision and can only halt it if logically wrong.
  • This, in the case of careers, according to the teens, is also demanded similarly that the discretion of their profession must lie in their own hands but must be driven by parental advice.

Hangout Restrictions

  • Although teens expressed hate on restrictions on outing, they also added that they don’t mind subtle restrictions such as those on money spending, maximum outing time (children living in Dubai specifically noted 9-11PM and recommended an earlier set time for those in India or any other insecure location)
  • They don’t accept any restrictions on inter-gender conversations and hangouts. It is also common to see teens supporting such rebellion. Subtle restrictions do apply though related to modesty.

Academic and life Expectations

  • Teens don’t mind expectations about academics completely but want it to be reduced so that parents appreciate them according to their caliber and their life goals. Furthermore, it would be nice if parents strived to raise an honest and positive valued child rather than a capitalist businessman that lies.
  • Parents must not force the child on what they want him to be but support his individual character development. Their aspirations must not be driven by what the people think or what they society wants (Log kya kahenge?)

Teenagers don’t want to hate their parents, they don’t want the barrier that has been made to remain, they expect their parents to love them, care for them, be open to them, hear them out, let them explain themselves and talk to them more. Not impose restrictions, yell at them and then call it ‘we care for you’. No- that’s not how it’s done.


Expectations and Thoughts of Parents Towards Their Teenage Children

Academic Life-

  • Most parents mentioned a balance of expectations in this case. In cases of multiple children, the parent expects a more volatile series of outcomes from the younger child as his education life is not as stressful as of higher grades (boards etc.). Parents expressed the need to expect based on the children’s caliber
  • but the author detects vagueness in the statement as often parents and teachers overestimate this and nurture it in a wrong way- which must be changed based on further evaluation.

Social Life-

  • Parents don’t like how the teenagers are hyper on social media but inactive in real life conversations.
  • They support forced meet-ups with relatives and want to train their children on meeting new people to develop social skills and real life conversations.
  • The child must be out-going and socially active but at the same time stay vigilant and away from events that might taint in their life as a regretful scar.
  • Some parents who don’t oppose inter-gender restrictions do oppose a few things and want those meets to be controlled.
  • Parents demand quality time for discussion and entertainment within their family alone- outings, talks with the phones collected and on-silent, sitting by the sea shore etc.

Restrictions-

  • No parent has opposed restrictions in the survey, the family is an organization and no organization can run without rules and regulations.
  • However, these regulations must be logical and the parents are answerable to the children on the reasons and logic behind them.
  • Children have complete right on inquiring why a certain restriction or command has been placed and if not explained- their rebellion can’t be solely blamed on them.
  • Device usage must be controlled (not completely banned), in fact, usage of anything must be controlled and not overused. Few parents have expressed dislike towards their children for overuse of various things.

Parents opposing other parents-

  • Some inputs by parents have gone against other parents as well which oppose continuous nagging, melodrama, and feeding into their children’s tantrums.

Note to teens:

  • No parent will leave you partially unsupervised if they don’t trust you.
  • It is up to you to gain their trust, be open to them, talk to them, be free with them, let them have a vague idea of what you’re doing, where you go, who your friends are and who all you meet.

Note to parents:

  • Most kids don’t follow the restrictions you place if they are not logical, they just go discreet and hideously carry out those activities anyway.
  • Some kids who you do provide freedom to, often misuse it, it is seen that many kids will leave the house at midnight to smoke joints with their gangs and involve in drug trading- watch out. 
  • Place restrictions based on the level of society, circumstances and as per the caliber and nature of your child, give him the right to oppose and debate your ideas (as long as the discussion does not turn immoral and oppressive)

Did you as teenager(s)/parent(s) find this relevant? Have you learnt more about the ideologies and aspirations of your parents or kids? Do you have any opposition to any of the mentioned points?

Feel free to comment and discuss!


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