Reasons Why Your Rebellious Teenager Doesn’t Want to Talk

The rebellious teenager–the stereotype feared and known by many parents. If you’re a parent, you know what it feels like when your teen gives you the cold shoulder. Most of the time, it seems like they’re doing it for no reason–but that’s not necessarily true.

While teens experience a hormonal roller-coaster that can make their mood wonky, sometimes it’s more than just being a rebellious teenager. To help us be better parents to our teens, it’s important to understand some of the reasons why your teen may not tell you why they’re moody or feeling down.

They expect you to have a bad reaction

rebellious teenagerOne of the most common reasons teens don’t talk to their parents is fear of negative repercussions or reactions. For example, maybe your son failed his math test and he feels like he really tried. He studied, he practiced, and yet he still failed. He may keep it to himself because he thinks you’ll just tell him he should’ve studied more and label him as a rebellious teenager.

You may be thinking you would never react that way, but the truth is that many parents do. They believe their teen just slacked off again instead of trying to listen. To possibly get around this barrier, ask: “Are you not telling me because you think I’ll have a bad reaction?”

This opens up an avenue for you to assure them you’ll listen and give meaningful advice–not the regular “I told you so” attitude.

They’re afraid you’ll tell everyone

Parents are infamous bigmouths. Thus, it would make sense for teens to be afraid to say anything too personal. Parents often don’t think about it as if a close friend told them a deep secret and end up passing the information along.

Sometimes it’s necessary–such as a classmate doing something dangerous–but a lot of the time it isn’t. To mend this divide, you have to make it clear to your teen that you’ll keep things confidential as long as it’s nothing very dangerous. You have to create a space where your teen feels comfortable divulging details.  

You’re pushing too hard

While it comes from a place of love, parents can sometimes push too hard for their teen to open up to them. You have to give them the time and space to decide if they want to talk–you can’t force it.

Make sure they know they have a safe, supportive option if they want to open up–otherwise, give it time. Though, if your teen is acting out and truly showing troubling behavior, it’s important to seek out a professional for help.

There are options for your rebellious teenager

Elevations RTC is a residential treatment center for teens, ages 13 to 18. Our students often grapple with anxiety, trauma, depression, ADHD, and other emotional or behavioral issues.

As one of the leading residential treatment schools for struggling teens, we use a combination of a focused therapeutic lens, real-world environment, secure setting, and caring staff to foster growth and success in our students. Finding the right program can be difficult for a family, which is why Elevations is here to help guide you through it.

For more information about how we can help a rebellious teenager at Elevations RTC, please call .

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