Guest Author - Chinedum Ify Obikili
I just concluded work on the shooting of my first teenage movie. In this movie, we try to give voice to the stuff our young adults are faced with. Teenage violence is not something that just happens, these youngsters have issues too. At that point where they are hit with the fact that they have to leave their comfort zones, which have for long shielded them from taking responsibilities for their actions, and move on to the phase where they are expected to be accountable and responsible. Their first reaction is always to resist and rebel against almost everything that life lodges at them.
My point is this, the young adults should not be left to go through this phase of their life alone. If there is a time they need our guidance the most; that time is now. They may put up the font of being old enough to take care of themselves but we know that is not true. Some ways we could help our young adults through their teenage phase would be to:
1. RESPECT THIS PHASE THEY ARE IN: They want to be treated like adults, they want to express themselves in their own way and they want to be heard. So, let them be heard. What we need to do as parents is, encourage them to speak up, express themselves while all the time we gently put in words of advice and rebuke here and there.
2. THE IDEA OF APPLYING FORCE WILL PLAINLY NOT WORK: Trying to forcefully get any teenager into obedience has never achieved anything order than make things worse. This is a stage where you try to reason with them; that will make them feel like the adults that they want you to treat them as.
3. STILL BE FIRM: Much as you donít want to create confrontations or make an existing confrontation uglier than what it already is, you still have to be firm on whatever rules you have laid down in the home. Make them understand that breaking or violating these rules would have consequences. Allowing them get away with stuff would only give the impression that you are not to be taken seriously.
Finally, always keep in mind that they will come out of this phase. Your sole duty should be to help them through this phase with minimum scar.