Moms: These 5 spot-on ways to connect with your son will keep him close (and make both of you happier)
The biggest complaint Richard Platt hears from boys: “My mom doesn’t understand me.”
What he hears from moms: “I can’t control him! I can’t talk to him! What do I do with him?”
(Full disclosure as a mom: I didn’t transcribe the above from my own real-life teen-son experience. Though I could have!)
The disconnect between mothers and their adolescent sons is rooted in a lot of common misconceptions parents have, says Platt, a family therapist and parenting coach in Mill Valley, CA, who specializes in boys ages 13 to 20. They’re not so much trying to pull away and separate from us as they are trying to figure out who they are as their own person.
“What we see as ‘teenage rebellion’ is actually abnormal,” Platt told me. “We call it normal because there’s so much of it in our culture. Kids rebel because they’re pissed. They’re desperate for their parents to understand them rather than just react to their behaviors.”
So what should we know about our tween and teen sons? Platt has some ideas about mother-son communication that really work:
Mark interviews Richard Platt about Teen Issues, Counseling and Mentoring. Richard talks about how he works with teens and addresses their issues, helping mentor teens to overcome life’s challenges.