Helping teenagers navigate their parents’ confusing divorce


Most parents of teenagers would agree that this stage of life is no walk in the park. Adolescence is a transition between childhood and adulthood, and steering through this time of change is often stressful for both kids and parents. However, during a parental divorce, life becomes even more difficult for teenagers. What follows may help divorced parents in California navigate this complicated season of life

Listen to them 

Teens whose parents divorce often have mixed feelings. They may refuse to open up or talk about the situation, or they may have a ton of concerns and questions. However, do not push them if they refuse to talk, but be ready to listen when they are ready to share. Teens need to feel valued by their parents. Although they may not always be willing to talk, it is crucial to give teenagers undivided attention when they are ready to talk. 

Be the parent, not the best friend 

After a divorce, it is not uncommon for parents to act like friends for their kids. Parents usually have the purest intentions and do this to get closer to their kids. However, during this difficult time, teenagers need the security of a parent as opposed to a friend who allows them to do whatever they want. There are tons of people who can be their friends, but only a couple who can be their parents. If a change in parenting style is needed, do it gradually, as a sudden change can be confusing and destabilizing.  

Remember, teenagers are already undergoing physical changes that can take a toll on their emotional state. A parental divorce may exacerbate emotions that teens aren’t equipped to handle. Parents in California who are going through a divorce and need help can obtain much-needed guidance by contacting and speaking with a trusted and knowledgeable family law attorney.