Closed-mindedness is a part of growing up, but sometimes you need to step up and intervene
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The pitfalls of growing up and of our being in general is that everyone can consider something completely different as healthy or normal. According to psychologist and therapist Jana Tylš Adámková from the psychedelic clinic Psyon, a good indicator that the course of adolescence is healthy is when a person fulfills and progresses through the developmental tasks he has and functions in all basic areas of life.

“Even if a teenager does things that his parents or teachers don’t agree with or stop at, if the child manages to go to school, complete his assignments, have his hobbies, and at the same time function well in relationships with his peers and is also able to communicate with adults to some extent, parents can usually be at peace internally,” says the psychologist.

Does your teen have the following levels:

B) work/school level,

If you feel that all the above levels are fulfilled, it is most likely a healthy process of adolescence, even if some things do not seem normal to you. But what does (ab)normal mean?

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The limit of normality is very individual

Normality or norm depends on how each individual or in this case the family as a whole has it set up.

“Every family has its own customs, norms and family culture. It follows from this that what is normal for one person can be disturbing for another,” explains the expert, adding that it is important to look at one’s own internal norm and, accordingly, determine what is still acceptable or, conversely, no longer permissible.

“Sometimes breaking down family stereotypes can be useful, but the process can be difficult for us as parents, because confronting our own prejudices is not easy,” adds the psychologist.

A closed parent equals a closed child. Truth or lie?

Temperament has a very strong biological component and is largely inherited from our parents. It can happen that sometimes the temperament is very different from the parents, even if the basic tuning is similar.

“However, during adolescence, the child deviates from the parents’ standards. He wants to go his own way. However, as for closed-mindedness, it does not always have to be a character trait. The reason may be some life situation, experienced trauma or suffering,” says the psychologist, adding that at the same time we learn the way of communication and problem solving from our loved ones by imitation, so it is important as a whole family to work on cultivating these skills.

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Each of us reacts in a different way. Why is your child silent?

Two teenagers can deal with almost the same problem or go through the same traumatic situation, but each will still react differently. What is behind it?

According to the psychotherapist, it depends on how the adolescent had strategies for coping with difficult situations in his childhood.

“However, the choice of strategy is not a conscious choice. It is according to the internal setting of the individual. In practice, this means, for example, that when a teenager is angry and normally prefers to hide somewhere, he cannot decide out of the blue to enter into a conflict or want to talk about it with his parents or another adult,” explains the expert.

In addition, each of us starts from some of our own sources – internal and external, while the external ones represent, for example, relationships with parents, other adults or peers.

“The more external and internal resources a person has, the better he can cope with challenging life situations. But if there is a lack of them, it can lead to pathological behavior or even withdrawing into oneself, which can be a risk,” warns Tylš Adámková.

How to support an introverted teenager

First of all, it is important to realize what kind of relationship position you have with the teenager. Another form of support will come from a friend, parent or psychologist. However, basic support should be based on understanding.

“A closed person can open up to you if you support them and don’t pressure them. You can reflect, but always leave an open space for him to say on his own what is going on,” advises the psychologist, adding that sometimes even providing space is not enough.

“If a person has had a traumatic experience, they may feel so paralyzed by shame or fear that it is almost impossible to talk about it. Sometimes even victims of abuse or rape are blackmailed or intimidated, which also complicates the possibility of confiding.

In such moments, when we are concerned about our child, we see that his behavior and mood have changed considerably compared to the usual state, we can offer a consultation with an expert who, through a well-established psychotherapeutic relationship, can open a space for talking about such experiences as well.”

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It also depends a lot on what kind of situation is being dealt with in connection with the closure.

“If it concerns domestic violence, rape and similar serious situations, I recommend that you immediately contact professional services such as the Children’s Crisis Center, where children, parents or even school psychologists can go directly for consultation in a specific crisis situation.” the expert advises and explains that in crisis situations it is important to act and ensure the safety and basic needs of the child, or other family members.

Only after ensuring the adolescent’s safety can one begin to work on the child’s ability to gradually process their experience and heal their soul wounds.

Do you have an introvert at home? Don’t panic

If your teen is an introvert, that doesn’t automatically mean there’s a problem. Adolescent and adult introverts are able to establish good relationships with others, but usually not as much as with extroverts. However, their relationships are often deeper.

“Moreover, introverts are much more likely to solve things by themselves. However, if they have a quality background in their family, as soon as they want or need to talk, it will not be difficult for them,” says the psychologist.

The online world: Why do teenagers run to it?

The online world is a chapter unto itself and at the same time a phenomenon of our time, whether it is the online world in the form of writing messages, surfing the Internet, spending time on social networks, making videos for networks or playing online games. For today’s young generation, the online world is something completely normal and natural, which is why it can often seem like too much for the older generation.

“We are not saying that teenagers should be on social networks indefinitely, or that it would be necessary to support them in some way. But the vast majority of children have their online lives under control. What’s more, it contributes to their success in the team, which is very important for teenagers,” points out Michal Kalman, head of the research team from Olomouc’s Palacký University.

When it comes to playing online games, it’s actually very often a social event rather than shutting yourself off from the world. Such is the time now – the online world is a common part of the so-called Generation Z, or the Internet generation.

According to psychologist Jana Tylš Adámková, there is no reason to be afraid every time you see your child with a mobile phone in hand. On the other hand, you can set an example as a parent and offer your child, even a teenager, a program completely independent of the Internet or technology.

However, it is important to give these stimuli to your child from an early age and to reflect on how much and in what situations we use these technologies.

After all, isn’t the problem with me as a parent?

Closed-mindedness does not necessarily mean that something is happening, and if something is happening, it is not necessarily a problem of someone who has closed himself off from the world.

“Try to look at things from different angles and try to understand why something like this happened in your family. Often these are only small things, it’s just that it’s hard to figure them out. Therefore, it can be good to seek professional help in such situations, for example in the form of a psychotherapist or as part of family therapy,” recommends Jana Tylš Adámková.

In fact, it is not that there is a problem or perhaps a fault on anyone’s part. Primarily, it’s about making time for each other, learning to talk to each other, and working out together as a family what is important to you and what you want to change.

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