COVID-19 is a time of unpredictability for everyone. And no doubt, everyone is having a hard time coping with the virus and its effects. For parents who have teenagers, this may become the perfect opportunity for you to have talks with your teen during COVID-19. The time both you and your child spend at home is just far too important not to take advantage of, especially in terms of communication.
When you’re talking to your teenagers, you have to make sure you’re not infringing upon any activity they’re doing. You have to try and create an air of openness where freedom and self-expression can be fostered. In much the same way, you certainly wouldn’t want to force your child to open up. This doesn’t mean that you won’t try as a parent – you simply need to tread the fine balance. Once you’ve got all of these in the bag, you may begin trying to talk about difficult topics with your teen.
Some parents may not necessarily understand the effects of COVID-19 on their teenagers’ mental health. This is true in many cases where the parent isn’t necessarily affected by anything that concerns the matters of the mind – but this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t make the effort to do so.
Use the time spent at home to talk to your child about their mental health. They may be struggling to adjust to the drastic changes that they’ve been experiencing around this time. Apart from this, they may constantly find COVID-19 related news to be upsetting. As much as they try to accept everything that is happening, you need to be there for them to process what they are feeling.
When talking to your teen about their mental health, it’s always safe to start with questions like “How are you feeling?” You need to make sure that this discussion takes place when your child is comfortable, so it’s best to do this when you notice them idling far more than usual.
Another important topic you would want to discuss with your teen is how well they can cope with self-isolation. As mentioned before, they may have difficulty adapting to many changes. For example, in self-isolation, they’re not permitted to go outdoors and meet their friends.
If you’re not necessarily hands-on with your child’s life in the past, now is the perfect time to try to be more engaged. You’d have to make sure that you’re doing your very best to let them know you’re here for them during isolation. Though you may not fully understand their feelings around this time, allowing them the opportunity to voice out their most pressing concerns is a good starting point.
Last but not the least, it’s important that you let your child keep up-to-date with the latest health guidelines to keep themselves safe from the virus. They may be tired of your constant reminders when it comes to washing their hands, applying disinfectants, and the like. But during this time, there’s no such thing as being too careful.
Talk to your child about the many things they can do to keep themselves healthy. Let them know the importance of nourishing their body and improving their immune system to prevent them from getting sick. They can implement measures such as keeping themselves fit and active or even eating whole foods such as meat, eggs, and vegetables.
COVID-19 can be the perfect opportunity for you to finally have serious discussions with your child. Talks with your teen during COVID-19 shouldn’t be forced. In much the same way, they shouldn’t feel like they’re being interrogated.
The best piece of advice when it comes to talking to your teenager is for you to make sure they’re comfortable and open to discussing those issues with you.