Raising Teens And Young Kids
If you've ever tried to raise adolescents and small children at one and the same time, you'll know the pain of witnessing the faces of the small fry while adolescents are being their rebellious selves. Your eldest children didn't witness such histrionics. Their childhoods were pure and unadulterated by this kind of influence. They didn't see a teen talking back to his parents and you don't want these little ones to see that either.
But, like it or not, your small children are going to see some unpleasant behavior from their teenaged siblings, so the issue needs to be addressed. Here are some tips on how to minimize their discomfort.
Try to remove anxiety from your child.
During a teenaged tantrum, if you can, find something for your child to do in another room. However, if he is very worried, keep him with you. Put your arms around him as you deal with your teen and try to keep your voice firm and calm. When the storm is over, take time to cuddle with him so as to relieve his anxiety. Ask him if he needs to talk about what he saw and heard and give him your full attention.
Let your little one express his feelings.
Provide modeling clay or paper and crayons so that he has an outlet for his feelings that is nonverbal. This can be a great comfort to a child in the aftermath of any difficult situation. Let him explain his artwork to you.
Explain the teen years to your child.
During a quiet time, explain to your child that teens go through difficult years because their bodies change and this affects the way they feel about all kinds of things. Let him know that his teenaged sibling, deep down, loves his parents and family no matter what he might say or do; in fact his own actions cause him distress and he is unable to function as he would like.
Your child will doubtless ask if he, too, will go through this turbulent age. This is why it is important to reassure him that with lots of love and patience, that teens grow out of adolescence and become wonderful adults.