Aug 23

Guest Post: Parenting Strategies


Attorney Wiley is a participating speaker at monthly workshops put on by W.I.N. (Women’s Independence Network) which provide free professional advice to divorced women or women in the process of divorce. As part of our estate planning practice, one of our top priorities is to empower families to build a legacy that instills values and dreams for their children and grandchildren. As such, we thought it fitting to provide a guest post by one of our co-speakers at W.I.N., Steven Cessario. Steven is the founder CT Youth Mentoring & Development where he provides mentoring and coaching for young people.

4 Strategies Every Parent Needs to Know!

By: Steven Cessario –

1.Understand the Parent and Child Relationship

The parent and child relationship can be complex and confusing. Your teen son can be angry and upset one moment and happy and loving the next. The relationship is transforming and growing. Your son is creating his own identity and the roles in between you and your son are shifting.

2. Use “I” Statements

A form of effective communication is the use of “I statements.” It should replace the opposing “You statements” which implies judgment and blame, saying someone is at fault for something. For example, a parent telling their teenager, “You spend so much time playing video games,” is not as effective as “I am curious about why playing video games is fun for you”?

When a parent uses I statements, it’s helpful in avoiding assumptions, you are speaking only about what you feel and think is true. Communicating with your teen son about what your thoughts are as in the form of an I statement can be helpful in creating peaceful communication and sets a good example for your teen on how to appropriately express feelings.

3. Understand the Teenage Brain and Learning Differences

An easy way of looking at this is, teens are a “work in progress,” and have “immature brains”. Young people are in the process of learning how to use their brain functions.

The teenage brain is slowly developing and can affect their learning. If your teen son is having a hard time in math or biology class, it might be because their brain has yet to fully comprehend the logic of the material. Every person learns differently at different speeds and this is important for parents and the teen to understand.

4. Set Boundaries and Co-Create Agreements

Adolescence is different from all other stages of human development and is the reason why assisting your teen son in creating a balanced life can be complicated but very important. Parents need to re-think boundaries for teenagers, and co-create agreements about expectations. It is also a good idea to ask your teen for input about expectations to make them feel involved in decision making.

It is best to make sure parents create boundaries for their teen that are appropriate and have little trouble applying. Sometimes parents will set unrealistic expectations for themselves and their teens, leading to inconsistent communication and boundaries.

For more strategies and the full article click here.