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Punishment Rules for Difficult Teenagers

by
author image Kay Ireland
Kay Ireland specializes in health, fitness and lifestyle topics. She is a support worker in the neonatal intensive care and antepartum units of her local hospital and recently became a certified group fitness instructor.
Punishment Rules for Difficult Teenagers
A mother and daughter working together on a laptop. Photo Credit IPGGutenbergUKLtd/iStock/Getty Images

Overview

Teenagers are notoriously hard to deal with, especially when it comes to responsibility and discipline. Walking the fine line between childhood and adulthood, most teens struggle to assert their own free will, resulting in rebellion against their parents. The best way to think of punishment rules for difficult teenagers is to first set the ground rules with your teen and point out the consequences, so your teens know beforehand what type of offense will merit certain undesirable consequences.

Contract

Your rules should always be spelled out clearly in a home contract that both you and your teen signs, says TeensWithProblems.com. A contract allows you to imagine different scenarios and present proper punishment for each instance of bad behavior. This allows both you and your teen to communicate about behavior and punishment so you are on the same page, without misunderstanding.

Privileges

Revoking privileges is an ideal way to punish your difficult teen. As a minor under your care, it is up to you to say what your difficult teen can and can't do. Hanging out with friends, driving the car and having a loose curfew are all privileges, and you shouldn't feel bad about removing them when your teen has been difficult. She'll soon learn that those privileges are earned through hard work and trustworthiness.

Technology

Most teens are fairly addicted to technology, since it is typically how they communicate with others. Removing your teen's ability to communicate through technology can help them spend some time without the distraction of friends to think about their difficult behavior. Take away the computer, cell phone, home phone or gaming device until he commits to better behavior.

Responsibility

Giving your teen added responsibility when she has been difficult may seem counterintuitive. But by adding to her list of responsibilities, such as taking care of the home, washing the car or caring for smaller siblings, you give your teen a purpose around the home. While she'll likely balk at the idea of more chores, it will teach her that difficult behavior only nets her more in the way of responsibility, which ultimately cuts back on her freedom and time with friends.

Natural Consequences

When your teen is in trouble at school, your first instinct is to contact the teachers and principal to see what you can do to make things better. But sometimes rushing to your difficult teen's rescue only teaches him that he needn't feel responsible for his actions, knowing you'll swoop in and clean up the mess. Instead, allow natural consequences to occur, says Heartlight Ministries. It may be hard at first, but it's the only way that your child will learn to be accountable. This is an ideal form of punishment.

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