When you are planning a consequence for your teenage child who has committed an offense, the most important thing to lay emphasis on is your child learning a lesson from the consequence, rather than focusing on their carefree attitude towards the consequence, which is bound to come.
Your teenage child does not say they don’t care because they actually don’t. It is more of a defense mechanism or a display of machismo that they do not actually feel. Paying any attention to your teenage child when they say they don’t care is simply stooping to their level and giving them more power and upper-hand.
How To Deal With Teenagers Who Don’t Care About Consequences
And don’t even bother expecting them to surrender and admit that they are affected by your punishments because they will likely not.
Insist on the consequence, irrespective of their reaction to it and make it known that they will get the very same consequences if the offense is repeated, whether they care or not.
Tips For Dealing With A Teenager With Attitude
It is advised that if you want to punish your teenage child for doing wrong, give them a punishment that is in line with what they did. Except their wrong is in any way related to their phones, then they shouldn’t be punished by taking away their phone.
If your kid went on a site or used an app they weren’t supposed to, you can seize their phone for a while or delete the said app. Whether or not they did something wrong with their phone, as young kids, you should put a restriction on their use of phone.
This would help curtail many excesses like using phones at dinner, or using phones past their bedtime. It might be okay to take away your teenage child’s phone to reduce distraction and help them focus on their studies, but you must respect their privacy and resist the urge to go through their phone.
This would further retain their trust in you since they are sure that you are only taking their phone away for their good and not actually invading their privacy.
In a situation where you take away your teenage child’s phone or mete out any other punishment to them as a consequence for ill behaviors and they seem not to care about the punishment or consequence they are facing, you can be thrown off-guard and get frustrated at your child’s gimmicks.
They serve the punishments, face the consequences, laugh it off and go right back to doing what they were just punished over.
As frustrating as this might be, it is important that you stay calm and get some facts right in order to handle the situation right. Here are a few questions you might want to get answers to before acting out:
Is Your Punishment Approach The Right One For Your Child?
If you keep getting negative feedbacks after giving punishments and consequences, your teenage child repeats the same offense time and again, gets even worse instead of changing for the better, you might need to ask yourself if the punishment or consequence you are giving is the right one for your child and appropriate for the offence.
Not every consequence or punishment is suitable or effective for every offense. Seizing your teenagers Smartphone may be appropriate and effective for a Smartphone offense but not quite effective for breaking their curfew. Ensure that the consequences are given in relation to the offenses.
What Is A Better And More Effective Consequence Alternative?
Decide what the best punishment for the said offense is. The essence of a punishment is to correct a particular behavior and teach a child not to repeat the offense. If the punishment is not achieving this goal then there is no point to it.
Also different children react differently to consequences so you must be sure of which consequence is likely to have the most impact on your teen. Note that your child’s initial reaction to this consequence might be anger or even throwing a tantrum but this doesn’t necessarily mean that the consequence is not working. Give it some time.
Is Your Teenage Child Really Not Affected By Your Punishments?
Teenagers tend to care more than they let on. They are affected by your reactions and punishments when they offend but they are not very likely to let you see just how affected they are. However, no matter how much they try to deny being affected, their body language might just tip you off if you pay careful attention.
What Do You Do When Your Teenager Seems Not To Care?
Make sure to keep punishments short and precise. Recurring, long, unending punishments will have more negative impacts on your teenager than corrective impacts. If your child becomes disrespectful or puts up an attitude, do not react or pay any attention to them as they are possibly doing this to get you to react and start a fight.
You do not need to react or enforce your authority. As long as the punishment has achieved the desired result of making them realize their wrong and fostering a positive change in them, simply walk away from that conversation.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is Taking Away A Phone A Good Punishment?
Trust me, it is not a good idea to take away your teenage child’s phone. The world has evolved and phones now substitute television, games and every other social activities. Your teenage kid does not only communicate with their friend on phone, they basically stay in touch with the world through their phone.
Their phone is their game pad, their television and their mode of communication. You might get them to do what they were refusing to do initially or get them to listen to you.
Taking away their phone is like cutting them off from the world all together, taking their television, videogames and communication with friends and this can backfire on you and make your relationship with your kid get even worse. Your child may start to hide things from you or even refuse talking to you for a while.
We advise parents to not just punish or give consequences but also call their teenage kids and talk about the offense they committed. Find out the reason they committed the offense and together figure a way to avoid repeating the same offense.
You can advise them on better ways to handle the situations that got them into trouble in the first place. For instance, if they stayed out too late, talk to them about managing their time when they are out so they can be done with all they have to do and be home before their curfew.
If they had a fight with their siblings, suggest better ways of handling things with their siblings instead of getting into an argument or fight.
It might take some time for them to learn and begin to behave better but those consequences are working. Do not give up on the consequences just because they do not change instantly. Truth is, they cannot change instantly! Give it time. With consistency, you will begin to notice positive changes in their behavior.