Isn’t it normal for teenage kids to be moody and irritable? Weren’t we the same when we were kids? It’s so hard for parents to determine the cause of their teenage kids’ moody behavior, especially if they haven’t developed an open kind of relationship throughout the years. Parents sometimes watch helplessly as their kids navigate the tumultuous period of teenage years. Their kids become distant and detached. But how do you know that it’s time to call for professional help?
The thing with this period in your teens’ lives is that they might need family therapy already, but they don’t even know it yet. They could be suffering from depression, but they are in denial. So you’re left watching them detached even from their friends. This is the hardest part of being a parent: watching your kids deal with their own problems. You think that when they are little, you can give them the world and solve all their problems. But watching them go through their teenage years is often heartbreaking.
How will you know if the mood swings are still normal? Isn’t it normal for teenagers to be moody? Aren’t they all snappy? Here’s where you have to trust your parental instincts. You know your kids more than anyone else in the world. Is it normal for them to act the way they do now? Is it just temper tantrums, or could there be a deeper reason for their moodiness? Look for mood shifts that stem from nothing. If they’re snapping at their younger siblings after laughing with them a minute ago, that could be a sign of a deeper problem.
Sudden Change in Behavior
It’s normal for teenagers to want a room of their own, as well as more independence. They may not want to hang out with the family anymore on weekends. They have plans with their friends. They may want to be in a romantic relationship. These are all normal. What’s not normal is them becoming totally different. People don’t change overnight. If you find your teenage kids doing a complete 180-degree turn on their behavior and attitude, look out for other signs of depression.
Are your teenage kids struggling with their academics more than the usual? If they used to get good grades but are suddenly forgetting to submit their homework, this can be a sign of more serious stuff. Forgetting to do homework one time is okay, but doing it repeatedly warrants attention. What could be pushing your kids to neglect their schoolwork?
Change of Friends
If your kids stop hanging out with their friends from middle school, that can be a cause of worry. Don’t jump the gun yet. Try to find out from them why they haven’t been hanging out with their old friends. See if they’re going to share who their new friends are. Did something happen to their old group? Do they even have new friends, or are they eating their lunches alone?
It is heartbreaking to see your teenage kids struggle with this chapter of their lives. You have to be in tune with their feelings. You have to let them constantly know that you are there to support them. Try to find the balance in your relationship. And don’t be afraid to seek professional help when needed.