Have you had a conversation like this recently?
How are you?
Did you have a great day?
Anything exciting happen?
You have a teenager in your life, don’t you?! Urgh, why can’t they expand their answers or ask about your day?
Well, keep reading. This blog will help get the banter started between you and your teen and bridge the conversation gap.
Finding common ground is key
I used this technique often during my policing days when I wanted to get suspects talking.It’s a great way to build rapport, trust and loosen their tongue. The information I‘ve extracted ranges from dobbing in their co-offenders to drug dealers and drug crop locations, but that’s another story, and chocolate biscuits also played a part!
The secret they don’t want you to know
Here’s something your teenager is hiding, something they will NEVER want to admit to you…
Are you ready for the truth?
They want to spend time with you. Shhhh, don’t tell them I told you, it’s a secret!
How could you have known when the majority of your questions are answered with a shoulder shrug or a grunt?
Your adolescent wants some of your time; anything else such as the latest game, clothing etc. is only a substitute. Quality time spent together equates to flowing communication, love and respect. As a parent, I know that’s what you want to experience as well. So I’ve put together the emergency bag of conversation starters.
Set aside some time and ask your children some of the following open ended questions. Have fun with them and enjoy some quality time and laughs, perhaps over dinner.
- If you could decorate our whole house, what would it look like?
What are the qualities that make a good friend?
Tell me about your favourite toy when you were little?
Tell me about something I never knew you did when you were little?
If you were going to have a weird, unusual pet, what would it be?
What do you say to comfort yourself when something scares you?
If a genie would grant you only one wish, what would you wish for, and why?
What do you think are the characteristics that make a good parent?
What is the most enjoyable thing our family has done together this year?
What is the grossest thing you can think of?
How do you describe me to your friends?
What would you do if you won the lottery?
What have you done that you are especially proud of?
Which of your friends are you proudest of? Why?
Do you think honesty is always the best policy? Why or why not?
What kids are popular in your year level? What do you think makes a person popular?
What would you do if you were invisible for a day?
What is your very earliest memory as a very little kid?
Do you feel inspired to take this a step further? Ask some adults in your life the same questions. Ask them what they’d do if they were invisible for a day! You might be surprised by their answers.
Adolescence can be confronting for everyone in a household, but make sure you enjoy time with your teenagers. They’re the gifts that keep on giving … or should that statement be about the family dog? 🙂
Let me know how you go!