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How To Get Along With Your Parents

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Does it feel like you and your parents just can't see eye to eye? Are you always fighting with them about YOUR life? Is all the arguing and butting heads stressing you out? Follow these steps to find some peace.
Difficulty: Hard
Time Required: As much as needed!

Here's How:

  1. Make a list of the things that you and your parents fight about the most.
  2. Identify what it is that gets you so upset or angry - are you mad that your parents disagree with you, or are you upset that they can't/won't see your point of view?
  3. Decide on a FAIR compromise - a resolution that you can live with and that you think your parents' will accept. NOTE: A compromise means you give up some of your demands - it does not mean that you get your way.
  4. Write down your proposed compromise and read it aloud at least three times to see how it sounds.
  5. Set up a time to talk to your parents, do not just bring it up over dinner but make an actual appointment and tell them that you have an important proposal to make.
  6. Bring your notes with you to the meeting so you can stay on track if/when emmotions get high. You may even want to consider reading the note to your parents like a speech.
  7. Before talking to your parents, take a few deep breaths and think calming thoughts. Make a promise to yourself that you will not raise your voice or get angry even if your parents "turn up the volume."
  8. When you have presented your case take another deep breath and let your parents talk. Really listen to what your parents have to say. Even if you do not like what they are saying hold back your anger and keep your ears and mind open.
  9. Avoid shutting down or growing frustrated. Avoid interrupting them or jumping in with a rebuttal. Just listen and absorb what they say.
  10. If your parents reject your proposal, stay focused and avoid getting emmotional. Thank them for their time and express your disappointment that you could not reach a compromise.
  11. If your parents accept your proposal, be grateful and assure them that you will not let them down. Then do everything necessary to show them they made the right decision in going along with you.
  12. Whatever the outcome, be sure to do what your parents ask of you. By going along with their wishes you build trust and show your maturity which in turn may make them more willing to relax their stand at a future date.
  13. If the topic is a very sensitive one and you still can't see eye to eye, ask your parents what they need from you in order for them to consider your proposal.
  14. Make a vow to give them what they need and ask them if you can agree to revisit the subject in a few weeks time.
  15. If the outcome disappoints you, do not throw a fit. Go to your room and write your feelings in a journal or go outside and ride your bike or punch a pillow to blow off steam.

Tips:

  1. As a teenager, you are learning to become more independent, and this may be why there is friction in your house.
  2. As you and your parents adjust to your new independent self, the fighting will decrease.
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