Jan 17, 2024 in Coaching
Empowering Your Teen: A Guide to Navigating Individuation
Learn the key shifts to support their growth into successful adults, and foster meaningful conversations. Start now!
It's your turn now! Let's support each other by clicking "Helpful".
How do I fix a marriage after cheating??
My husband of 5 years has cheated on me. I'm heartbroken. Can I fix our marriage?? Is there hope for us?? Will things get better? Please help
Am I over reacting? Am I the one in the wrong no him
Ok I've been with my boyfriend for 3 years now and he denied cheating on me but everything points to the opposite he's gone to spend the night with his baby moma and her kids in a hotel he rated me put to her when I called the cops on her for her vandalizing my car he would defend her when I would bring thing up about her and he has a video of her playing with her self am I wrong for being mad?
We both have insecurities and trust issues due to past relationships... So, there's the back and forth accusations, yelling, name calling, etc. We are both extremely jealous and have no communication skills. We love each other but sometimes Love isn't enough to make someone understand that you aren't going to hurt them. How can we help each other overcome these issues?
Idk what to do
My boyfriend and I have been fighting because he found some old messages that I had when we started going out, the messages are not bad the conversations where just like hi and bye kind of thing but because I told him I wasn't talking to anyone he's mad but da whole time he was still hanging out with his baby momma behind my back and he would delete all his messages to her so I wouldn't see them
Lost and confused at a crossroads
My boyfriend and I have been together for seven years now. We have had a very tumultuous relationship both of us have hurt each other very much on each parts. But he’s done a lot more wrong it has no accountability. But my question is how do you handle it because anytime I try to talk to him about anything he automatically yells at me, deflects, accuse me of cheating. How do you go about handling
How can I get my teen to confide in me
I've been trying to get my son to confide in me about why he is feeling so depressed. He is 15 years old and a very good teen but have no idea why he is so withdrawn and quiet. Please help me I cant bear to see him like this
What do I do?
I'm not sure what to do. Recently separated mom with 2 young girls and pregnant with my 3rd.
I took my son's Ipad away because I'm at my wit's end with him.
He is so addicted and doesn’t want to do anything else. Can anyone tell me whether I did the right thing or am I being too harsh?
It's 3 y I divorced and we have shared custody of 2 lovely kids. Any advice on how to make them understand that divorced parents is ok?
What should I do?
My son is acting out in school and giving people the middle finger and running around and hitting when he is restrained and he also has speech apraxia and may have ADHD
Are you wondering why your teen suddenly wants nothing to do with you?
Your sweet child who once made you rub their back every night until they fell asleep may now barely even want to be seen with you. This is part of Surviving Your Teen’s Individuation Process, a complex developmental stage known as individuation.
It’s Not You, It’s Individuation
According to physician and psychiatrist Margaret Mahler, a child’s life begins in a symbiotic relationship with their primary caregiver before they eventually realize their separateness and form an autonomous identity.
This process of individuation often results in classic adolescent behavior: a need for space, an increased awareness of their peers, and volatile emotions. Sound familiar?
As difficult as it is for parents to feel their children drifting away, it’s important not to take it personally. Your child is going through a perfectly natural development in their lives—and it’s critical to give them the support they need so they can grow to be an autonomous and well-adjusted adult.
Add to myWE:
How can we Help Teens Become Successful Adults (and support ourselves) through this new phase of development?
What your child needs at age 7 will no longer apply to this stage in life. As our kids transition into adolescence and adulthood, we must make adjustments to our parenting, too.
3 Parenting Shifts to Support Your Teen’s Individuation
- The transition from “manager” to “consultant.”
As caregivers, we’re used to doing everything for our kids: feeding them, bathing them, tucking them in at night, and all things in between.
Now that your kid is a teenager, it’s time to step back from your managerial role. Your teen needs to learn How to let teens learn to be adults—so let them.
Fostering healthy autonomy involves giving your teen the space to make their own decisions, even if that means they dye their hair blue or pick a college far from home.
Of course, stepping back as a parent isn’t about becoming permissive or detached; it’s about taking on more of a consultancy role than a managerial role. The tradeoff when we let go of “power over” is that we gain influence.
Rather than giving directions, provide opinions or suggestions. Ask your teen questions instead of telling them what to do. Let them know that you’re there to guide them as they walk their own path.
- Encourage their curiosity about what’s fair and right.
Kids of all ages are deeply concerned with fairness. Just think about how many times you’ve heard your child shout, “It’s not fair!” over the years.
Why not put a positive spin on this preoccupation and encourage your teen to explore fairness and justice on a wider scale?
Talk to them about world issues like gender inequality and systemic racism. Understanding bigger concepts of fairness and unfairness will help them determine what’s fair and right in micro settings like school, friend groups, and even at home.
- Lean into the hard conversations.
Talking to your kid about topics like religion, politics, drugs, or sex can be uncomfortable—but these are the conversations you need to be having! Accept the discomfort and power through.
If, for example, you’re watching a movie and a controversial theme pops up, don’t just clear your throat and dismiss it. Encourage conversation, listen to what your teen has to say, and share your own opinion. Let them know you’re their safe space for addressing challenging topics head-on.
A child’s shift into adolescence and adulthood can be a tumultuous time. But if we commit to growing with them and shifting our parenting approach by Helping Your Teen Become an Adult and Adulting With Your Teen, we can help make this transition as smooth and manageable as possible.