50 tips for talking to your teens

Talking  to your teen – the prospect can unnerve even the most assured parent. Our #TeenTalk Twitter chat was all about how you talk to your teen with confidence about their challenges, including puberty (yes, that topic).

The chat was sponsored by the #TeenTalk campaign, run by Boots UK and P&G. With the #TeenTalk campaign, Boots and P&G are offering special deals on selected trusted brands through 6 June (products have changed a lot since we were teens!). When you go into Boots, you can also pick up a FREE #TeenTalk Guide on the aisle, with tips on talking to your child more seamless. Go to http://www.boots.com/teentalk for more information.

One of the top tips from the BritMums #TeenTalk Twitter chat was to find out from other parents what works when having these tricky conversations. Read on for their best tips, stories and advice — including that of Tattooed_Mummy, below, which is all about keeping a sense of humour about this stage of parenting!

 

Inject humour into your talks

tweet from #TeenTalk

Create a rapport before starting to talk make it a humorous one making sure the msg is delivered & they are not left embarrassed @Nehaparmar88

My dd’s yr 7 teacher was ace. She made the whole class yell ‘penis’ & ‘vagina’ out loud to get the giggles out of their system @ActuallyMummy

Honesty is the best policy

No subject off limits has always been my motto – it’s made for some very interesting dinner time chats!  @FromNikki

I would always open up more if they treated me as a (perceived) equal. Honesty and openness has to be the key.  @angep1969

I find sharing stories about myself helps start a #TeenTalk – nothing too explicit but “Once when I was young…” @jhowze

I think there’s never TMI, just simpler or more complex versions depending on age and need @ActuallyMummy

Listen as much as you talk

Make sure your child knows that no topic is off-limits and that you will listen without judgement @michelletwinmum

Don’t turn it into a lecture, more of a conversation where you listen to what they have to say as well. Don’t get angry @Luckysammyg 

Listen to them rather than trying to talk more to them! Make them feel secure and safe and comfortable @mummyandthecuties

Start early

I’d say start early then they’ll never feel awkward. With mine it’s been a natural progression of questions as they wanted more @Actually Mummy

Make sure before children are teens you’re open and approachable, makes life easier with the harder stuff when in teens @goriami

DD has always asked questions and I’ve always just answered – the birds and bees was done and dusted by age 5 @Tattooed_Mummy

What and who can help?

Soaps can be really useful as they often have relevant storylines @kateonthinice

I’ll often find something relevant in the news or a cute meme to start things off. @FromNikki

My daughter got a book age ten as she had lots of questions. Anything the book didn’t answer, I did @laralalibela

My daughter’s 20 and great with her 15yr brother because she understands the issues and has come out the other side of the teens! @AnnieMay64

Yes a book is a good idea. Mine read Growing up for Girls around 9 years old @ActuallyMummy

Sanitary products and toiletries

For girls I think the gift with purchase is fab or any little packs with treats it just appeals to them and makes it less daunting @loubyloux584

The Gillette razors are great – especially for a 15 yr old learning to shave – he’s doing well! The Gillette razors are great especially for a 15-year-old learning to shave – he is doing well @AnnieMay64

I bought my tween a range of sanitary products so she could try different ones out and find what she preferred. @emmaand3

I bought a selection and showed her how they all worked. Let her experiment so nothing was too scary.@FromNikki

Having a basket in bathroom with products in is helpful if your teen has friends over. Also a lidded bin. Remove any embarrassment @emmaand3

tweet on TeentalkFinding the right time to talk

I find the dinner table pretty good – captive audience not too heavy and we have quite a giggle sometimes @ActuallyMummy

The dinner table seems to be our default chat place too! Some things we have discussed over pasta would make you blush @FromNikki

After younger ones have gone to bed we potter about making hot drinks and convo seems to happen naturally @Ltabstar

Make time when your child is willing to talk. They don’t always open up at convenient times @michelletwinmum

For me the biggest thing is just to be available to them when they need to talk, not just as a one off be there through the years @loubylou584

When we’re on a family walk. There’s something about walking that gets the talking flowing @deboreefree2

Bedtime – more likely to get the truth if they are tired! @laralalibela

It’s also important to know when to back off for a while. The more my parents nagged me the more entrenched I’d become @angep1968

No talks in our house last more than the main course – enough time to make my point and before any arguments start @AnnieMay64

teentalk pic by actually mummyThe last words

And remember to tell them about the op gender too. I completely forgot he was worried when he saw that I was bleeding. @MsPurplePumpkin

I’ve put together 6 tips that work for my family for having the #TeenTalk @BritMums @BootsUK #ad

I am sharing surprising things I have learned about teenagers @emmaand3

I feel less lonely now I have such interesting tweens and a teen who is full of opinions, humour and cares for others @kateonthinice

I think it must be even harder for boys. Girls know they’re supposed to feel happy to talk about their needs @ActuallyMummy

I think that is the case especially now as women’s rights are rightly stronger but that can led to some boy/men bashing in the media @kateonthinice

I feel it is natural to feel nervous the first time you do the Teen Talk but it does get easier @ChelseaMamma

Third tip from my teenager: don’t think of teens as a group, everyone’s different and need different approaches: relax @deboreefree1

Honestly my biggest tip is don’t be scared. I have adored parenting my teen. It’s not like the media want us to believe! @emmaand3

 

See BritMums top tips for talking to your teen:

6 tips on how to have the #TeenTalk #ad

 

This Twitter chat was sponsored by Boots UK and P&G. Get more information on the #TeenTalk on the Boots UK site, including tips from a “teenologist”. And be sure to pick up your free #TeenTalk guide in Boots shops before 6 June 2017.

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