Regardless of your age, dealing with parents can be tough. You might think that they are being too strict, or disagree with the best course of action. It could even be a silly argument over the news, or a friend. Whatever the situation, you need some tactics for dealing with your parents maturely to avoid those big, dramatic fights that leave everyone feeling terrible. Here are some tips that’ll definitely help you next time you’re dealing with parents!
1. Formulate Your Argument First
The first step in dealing with parents sensibly is to decide what you’re going to say in advance. If you need to start a conversation that could be difficult, spend some time working out exactly what you need to say first. If your parents start the conversation, you’ll have less time to plan what you’re going to say, but you can still think it over in your head BEFORE you start talking. Formulate a plan, and stick to it. You’ll come across as sophisticated and mature, and your parents are much more likely to respond positively.
2. Practice Negotiating
Negotiation is an important business skill, and you can start honing it using your parents. Don’t enter discussions with them thinking that you’ll get your own way. As with most things in life, you’re probably going to need to negotiate and find a compromise that you are both happy with. Lets pretend that you want a later curfew. If you’re allowed out until 9pm at the moment, but would like to stay out until 10pm, make a case for 10:30pm or 11pm, and be prepared to send a text saying where you are and that you’ll be safe. That lets your parents compromise, but means you’ll both be happy. And if you only succeed in getting an extension until 9:30pm, grasp it and use it to show how responsible you are.
3. Be Nice
Lets face it, if we talked to our friends the way we talk to our parents sometimes, we wouldn’t have many friends left! Use those same principles on your parents. If you’re in a really bad mood, don’t hold any serious discussions. When you do have discussions, be mature and relaxed, and share your good mood. It needs to be genuine, too – if it’s too fake, you’ll look like a child! Being demanding and moody is unlikely to make anyone take you seriously, or want to help you.
4. Don’t Get Mad…
Count to five if you feel yourself starting to become enraged, and don’t hit back. Yes, it’s much easier to say than it is to do, but it’s important. You wouldn’t argue with your boss, or your best friend, so don’t get mad with your parents, either. Be mature, and prepare yourself for the possibility that you won’t see eye to eye. Keep your cool, and back away. If you need to end the conversation to avoid your anger, try asking your parents to think about your proposition for a few days, and then excuse yourself to calm down.
5. Remember That It’s Give and Take
It’s not possible to win every battle in a war. All good leaders decide what needs to be prioritized, and what can be ignored. You need to do the same. Prioritise your key points in your head, and be prepared to lose a few battles in order to win the overall war. In other words, give in sometimes, and don’t argue about it.
6. Know Where You Can Push Back
Everyone pushes their boundaries now and again. You are likely to cause conflict if you do – there is no way around that. Know which rules are really important to your parents, and do your best to follow those rules as much as possible. It might be doing well at school, and keeping your grades consistently high. It might be keeping your room tidy. It might be staying away from alcohol. Whatever it is, learn the most important rules, and follow them. After all, you can’t ask your parents to do what you want if you never do what they ask.
7. Open up
Your parents won’t be the first people you want to tell when you meet a cute guy, or have some amazing gossip. In fact, they might be pretty low down your speed dial. Do talk to them, though, every day. You don’t need to share the inner workings of your mind. Regular conversations will strengthen your relationship, and build a stronger bond. The more your parents are included in your life, the more responsibility they will feel happy giving you.
8. Suck It up
The toughest part of dealing with parents? Knowing that sometimes, you just have to suck it up. You could have created the most rational, mature argument ever, and presented it in a sophisticated way. You could have collected research, or tidied the whole house. Sometimes, though, nothing will work. If your parents are sticking to their guns, back down, and keep your head up.
These ways of dealing with parents won’t make all of your problems disappear, but they will help you to start a more mature relationship, and demonstrate that you are growing up and deserve more freedom and responsibility. Give them a go, and you’ll soon see a difference in how you’re treated! Do you have any great tips for dealing with parents? I’d love to hear them.