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By March 23, 2024No Comments

Parenting teenagers is uniquely challenging as they display difficult behaviors. In saying that, child and adolescent psychologist Dr. Sheila Redfern proposes parents teach teens to manage their feelings instead of trying to stamp out difficult behaviors. Understanding what is going on inside their changing brains is key to helping them mature into resilient and independent adults. Dr. Redfern, with the Anna Freud Center in London, has written a book on the topic and, while I’m not in the business of selling books, the title is compelling—How Do You Hug a Cactus? Reflective Parenting with Teenagers in Mind. The premise means not just focusing on the behavior but what is going on in the mind of the teen. That said, she also says boundaries count and so does parental authority.

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