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How to avoid being a pushy parent

Parents want the best for their children and worry all the time that they are providing for their children, often wanting to be better parents than their own parents were for them. What parents do not always realize is that their expectations can be a heavy burden for a child to bear. As children become teenagers they start to question their parents' values and compare them to other adults. They may spend more time round friends' houses than they did as a child and get to know other parenting styles, discussing what their parents expect with their friends they may come across very different approaches.

Any parent who says they do not want their teenagers to achieve, is lying, all parents want their teenagers to succeed, whether at school or on the sports field. It is sometimes a frightening sight, watching parents on the sidelines at little league matches, or football games; yelling and screaming at their children, criticizing them in front of everybody if they fail to score a run, a goal, do well. The child is humiliated by their parents' behavior and although they may truly wish to do well and please the parent, this desire will quickly turn to resentment if all they receive is criticism and never praise. Whilst the world is a competitive place and it would be na´ve not to teach children that winning is important; a far more valuable lesson is to also teach them how to be a good loser, gracious in defeat and a charming winner, polite in triumph.

Teenagers lean very quickly at high school, what they are good at and what subject areas cause them grief and aggravation. They need parents who will help them with the difficult subjects and praise them when they make progress, together with acknowledgement of their prowess in other subjects, whatever they are.

The trouble is, certain academic areas seem to carry more weight than others, are valued more, and the teenager who is good at Art but struggles with Math, may feel that their talent is undervalued and the focus is solely on what they cannot do well. This can quickly turn into acting out behavior as the teens self esteem takes a battering and they view their parents as being on the side of the school rather than the side of the teenager.

It is important to, on occasions, give teenagers a strong nudge; they can be lazy they do forget to do homework, or revision. However, if a teen feels that all parents do is tell them their efforts are not good enough, they will prove the parents right, and stop trying at anything. Teenagers may need help with some areas of school and life; they will not always be as clever as their parents were in some academic subjects. They do not need a pushy, angry parent; they need support, friendly encouragement, praise and understanding.

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