Importance of apologies with teens

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Importance of apologies with teens

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I am often pushed to make my kids to apologize to somebody, and its the dumbest thing in the world, it doesn't work, a coerced apology is not an apology at all. So what do you do in a situation when you feel your child owes someone else an apology, understand that what you are really trying to do is to grow those issues of character in a child, to do things like accept responsibility for her behavior, wrestle with imperfection, attempt to be better. Have you ever tried lecturing to your kids about those things. what do you get three four words out and the deflector shields go up . They simply are hearing you go wham wham wham after the third or fourth word. What do you do, well if they offend someone else, you can say you know i think it would be a good idea if you help them heal by apologizing and you might help yourself heal. Don't explain anymore than that. If they don't, don't go to war over, however how do you teach the lesson. When you snap out and you hurt your child, you smack them, you scream at them, you say something hurtful, go apologize to them even if she was hurtful to your first, especially if she was hurtful to you first. Why? because when you go in and say honey, when i hit you when i screamed at you, no excuse, I should not have done that, I am sorry, I will try to do better the next time. I apologize and you leave the room. One, you now have taught those lessons and her eyes are wide open, you are not talking about her. You are talking about your behavior. She is hearing about own in-behavior, wrestling with imperfections, and striving to do better, and there is a psychological trick here, because if you apologize for your half of the fight, your child cannot help but fill in the rest of the sentence. Yeah but I called mom a blah blah first and now she is thinking about her behavior, that's the trick.

See Michael J. Bradley, EdD's video on Importance of apologies with teens...

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Michael J. Bradley, EdD

Psychologist, Author & Speaker

Michael J. Bradley, EdD, award-winning author, has counseled adolescents and their parents for over 30 years and currently has a private practice in suburban Philadelphia. As a recognized specialist in adolescent behavior and parenting, Dr. Bradley is in demand as a speaker and facilitator for mental health professionals, educators, and parenting groups. He has appeared on over 400 radio and television shows, including CNN, The Today Show and Good Morning, America, and has been interviewed by numerous magazines and newspapers such as USA Today, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and Parents Magazine. His website forum is a great source of advice and encouragement to parents.

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