honesty and teens

How we bring up teens is a constant conversation. The important points of parenthood become apparent when you first realise, everyone is that the first rule of parenting is you are doing it wrong and the second rule is everyone else is doing it right. This was a quote from a TV show called the A word. However it is a common perception and feeds right into the points about the advisor dictating how we are feeling all the time.

Perhaps the point is not about how to parent but about how to live within the integrity of opur values. In a manner we feel comfortable with.

The answer is actually simple. If parents are honest in dealing with others, especially in dealing with their own children, they are teaching honesty. If, on the other hand, they lie, especially with their own children, they are training them in dishonesty.

We create our own reality. Humans spend a lot of time being negative and moaning about how others should behave. In old style personal development - "Be the change you want to see!" which from my perception means behave the way you want others to behave.

This all fits with the point about parenting teens, do you want the teen to grow up dishonest when any opportunity for truth exists. One person I work with we are implementing 2 plans around predictable lies. Oh and it is pathalogical.

  1. if we think the conversation is going to be too much and a lie is the obvious, path of least resistence, we preface the question with - "we have an opportunity to tell the truth here". Then we take a breath and gently ask the question.
  2. when there has been an obvious lie we stop, take a breath, and ask in a strange voice "LIE?" slowly and drawn out.

The first works more often than the second which works well only if the timing and relationships are in place. I think the first is more robust, in terms of this person as I have managed to get other supporters to achieve it.

Back to our teenagers. What do you want to happen? When the pressure is on my boys both saw me under pressure. I am an advocate of noticing an emotion and labeling it. More on that sometime.

One day the youngest was in the kitchen with me (about 15 or 16 years old) and I calmly explained that I was under the most pressure I had been under in a long number of years. He responded by saying that if I had not mentioned it he would not have known. I liked that.


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