4 Ways to Respond When Your Teen Seems Ungrateful

Major on the majors, not the minors.

Face it, some things simply don’t matter that much. They may matter to you, but do they matter to your child’s future? Some parents spend a lot of time focusing on the minor things like appearance. Even if you don’t particularly love their latest haircut or shirt style, if it isn’t an issue of modesty, it’s not worth making a federal case out of it. Allow them the freedom to express their own personality.

The music I liked as a teen drove my parents crazy. They couldn’t understand why I liked that “noise.” But even though I may not like a particular type of music a teen enjoys, if they are suicidal or on drugs or dealing with major anger issues, music isn’t going to be my focus. I want to spend my time on the things that matter most, and allow the teens to develop their own tastes. Believe me, it’s amazing how much their tastes will change over time, and before long they’ll like much of the same music you and I do. For now, they will mostly listen to what their friends are, so they can keep up on it and not appear to be out of touch with their culture.


Mark Gregston