Moms, Even When Kids Reject Your Advice, It’s Still Helping Them

The following is excerpted from an online article posted by HealthDay.

Does advising your teen sometimes feel like talking to the proverbial brick wall? Don’t fret: New research shows that even when your preteen or teen gives your advice a flat “no way,” your counsel is probably having an impact. It may simply be tucked away by your child, ready for use another day.

“The kids are at an age where they’re maturing and wanting to make their own decisions,” explained study lead author and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign researcher Kelly Tu. Tu is associate professor of human development and family studies at the university. Her team published the study in the May-June issue of the Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology.

The study focused on 100 mother-child pairs where the child was in the fifth grade. Tu said her team focused on that age (about 11) because it’s often a tough time for kids socially and academically as they ready for the transition from elementary to middle school.

The mom-child pair was asked to spend five minutes talking over an academic problem the child recently had.

“We wanted to understand what’s happening in actual conversations between parents and children,” Tu said. “We focused on academic challenges such as difficulty understanding schoolwork, being bored in class or problems with time management because academic expectations and pressure start to increase during this age. We wanted to know what parents are telling their kids about how to manage these stressors and how the kids are responding.”

To no parent’s surprise, their advice was often met with dismissal or vague “whatevers” by the child — an answer like “maybe” or “I don’t know.”

That does not mean that your child isn’t carefully thinking over your advice, Tu said. She said that in adolescence, many kids simply don’t want to appear like they are leaning on moms for guidance anymore.

However, based on the reports from kids and their teachers, advice does seem to sink in and help children as they move forward.

Source: HealthDay

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[reposted by] Jim Liebelt

Jim is Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for HomeWord. Jim has 40 years of experience as a youth and family ministry specialist, having served over the years as a pastor, author, consultant, mentor, trainer, college instructor, and speaker. Jim’s HomeWord culture blog also appears on and Jim and his wife Jenny live in Quincy, MA.

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