Responsibility and Freedom
You don't trust me...
But they're my friends...
Everyone else is doing it...
Teens need their independence, but how do you make sure they are safe?
Although every adolescent is different, there are many experiences common to the teenage years.
The most common may be the pull and push between dependence and independence.
Teens, at younger and younger ages, are putting themselves at risk for sexually transmitted diseases - including AIDS - and for pregnancy.
And some teens, and even younger children, smoke tobacco, drink alcohol, use other drugs, or commit acts of violence and other crimes.
No wonder so many parents are concerned, even frightened;
No wonder so many try to control the behaviour of their teenage children.
It is important for parents to make rules for younger children.
As children get older, however, they need to learn to make some of their own decisions and life choices.
Teens need the chance to practise good decision-making skills, and to manage new life experiences.
They need to agree to behave in responsible ways and to show that they can handle the freedom.
That's where respect, responsiblity and reliability come in.