You may think your parents are too old to understand what your life is like. They didn’t have to face the same pressures. Do you feel like they just tell you what to do, but have no idea what you have to deal with everyday?
Do you want to talk to your parents, but don’t know how to get started?
The easiest way is to start small.
First, get in the same location. If your family doesn’t eat a meal together, try to do it at least once a week. If you want to be a superstar- offer to cook or make it easy on everyone and get pizza. A phone call is great, but just being in the same place without distractions will make a big difference. A car is not the best time to talk about anything serious because half their attention is on the road.
Start by telling your parents something about your day. Maybe what happened to you at school or something you learned. If you feel up to it tell them what you thought. This opens the door to starting a conversation. Once you have started try to find a common experience. Maybe ask a question like, “Did you have to learn this while you were in school?” or “What do you think?”
If starting a conversation just doesn’t feel comfortable, start with an activity. Start helping with dinner, go on a walk or just play a board game. Start with something easy that will get you talking about what you are doing and then you can go from there.
A great way to get your parents talking is to ask their advice. Ask your parents what they think about think about what you are wearing or maybe a show on TV.
Sometimes when we think about our parents, we have them frozen in time. You know they were teenagers, but what was it like? What did they want? What do they wish they had done differently? Just listen. Then share about your own life when you are ready.
If you start with the small stuff, it will be easier when you want to talk about bigger things. And if you do it often enough, it gets easier. Your parents might be out of practice too so give them a few chances. Sometimes it may be hard to believe, but your parents really do care. .Give them a chance. Ask yourself these questions:
- Are there things I’ve always wondered about but never asked?
-If my parents were not around, what would I have wished I had known?
-What do I want my parents to know about me?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, it’s a great place to begin!
Then just start talking:
“So mom, what do you think about this?”
“The best thing happened to me today….”
“There is a football game this weekend and I’m not sure what to wear.”
“What was the theme of your prom?”
The best way to get your parents to listen is to talk and then wait for them to respond.