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10 Steps On How To Mentor Troubled Teens

Bringing up teenagers can prove a challenge to parents sometimes but the good news is that we can be able to help our troubled teens. All that as parents need are to learn how to work with our teens in such a way that they can learn to trust us that we have their best of interest in our hearts.

Teenagers need mentorship both from us parents as well as other positive role models such as teachers and tutors. The truth is that a troubled teen can disturb the peace and harmony of your family. The trouble that our teens get into is maybe due to peer pressure, hormonal changes, moodiness, stress, self-esteem and getting into trouble among other causes.

It is a myth that teens gets a lot of satisfaction when they cause trouble, but contrary to this belief, most of the teens feel remorseful and guilty, and they try to get out of trouble and improve their relationship with us parents.

If your teenager gets into trouble, you should not give up hope on him or leave him to his own devices. Instead, there are ways you can mentor your child into good behaviour and drop his poor attitude.

Action Plan

A troubled teenager needs your help to manoeuvre his passage from teenhood into adulthood. Well, most parents are working hard to change their troubled teens. But the truth is, we cannot change anyone. We can only change ourselves. Instead of demanding change, inspire change.

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When we become mentors, we can be able to use our influence to help our children. Teenagers are looking for that someone that they can look up to for guidance during this stage in life. Endeavor to be a role model to your child, and you will see all the changes that you are looking for.

Be Positive And Encourage

Mentoring a teenager is the process of you as a parent coming alongside your son first as a friend. When you become a friend to your troubled teenager, he will be able to speak more freely to you. Mutual communication and listening are the keys to understanding our teens. By so doing, you can be able to find out where he needs help and you will be able to guide him through to make the right decision.

Use Inspiration

Why do teens love to have idols? They need someone to look up to, for guidance and inspiration. By being a great role model and using actions to show rather than to nag with words. Inspire and challenge your teen to carry himself like an adult. He might be inspired to live up to the challenge and prove himself an adult.

Always Listening

You just want your child to be perfect. You want him to listen to you, trust you and lean on you. For you to accomplish this, you must take the role of a leader in the mentoring process. As a leader in this process, you need to listen more and stop cutting into your child’s sentences. Show your child that you can listen without judging him.

Create Projects Relating To Their World

Create interesting projects such as mixing math problems using social media metrics as a way to teach graphs and pie charts or ask them to do a short biography of their favourite pop star. That will grab their attention, instigate learning and deepen the bond between you and your teen.

Talk About Social-Economics That Matters To Them

Is your child interested in recycling? Or in nature? Or helping the poor? Discuss what matters to them in this world. Talk about how they can help. Organise an outing to volunteer at the local animal shelter or to help out at the old folk’s home.

Keep Up With Their Interest

Whether it is rock climbing, following the latest fashion or playing the latest PS Virtual games, it is imperative to keep up with their interest so you have a common topic to talk about. When you show interest in their life, they will mutually show interest in yours too.

Allow The Teen To Make Decisions And Rationalised With Them

As a parent, you need to give a set of basic rules that will act as a guideline to your troubled teen. These rules will go a long way to help your child what are the limitations. A degree of discipline is needed at this point, and you should ensure that your teenager spends more time with the rest of the family.

When your teen makes a choice, then it is your responsibility as a parent to gently guide him in the right direction. What a teenager needs most in his life is someone to give him counsel to make the right decision for his life. When a teenager has a mentor – in this case, you – he is likely to make the right decision for his life.

Never Lose Your Cool

When dealing with your troubled teenager, never react emotionally. I can’t stress enough on this one. Try to overcome your initial reaction to whatever your teen had done. I know it is very natural to us to feel betrayed when your teen acts contrary to your expectations. If you get emotional while trying to help him, you stand a chance of losing an opportunity to help your child become a better adult.

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Probe Gently Instead Of Demand

Your approach to dealing with your troubled teenager should change as you see your child improve in his conduct. You should deal with him firmly and gently instead of an unconditionally strict approach. When you are inquiring about anything, be gentle and friendly.


Teenhood is a phase that everyone has to go through. To ensure a smooth transition into adulthood, as a parent or a mentor to the teen, take an interest in his life, discuss topics that interest both of you and always set an example for him to follow. No child is too difficult to teach. Have patience and have faith. Afterall, he is still your child and you are still his parent.

Rum Tan

Rum Tan is the founder of SmileTutor and he believes that every child deserves a smile. Motivated by this belief and passion, he works hard day & night with his team to maintain the most trustworthy source of home tutors in Singapore. In his free time, he writes articles hoping to educate, enlighten, and empower parents, students, and tutors. You may try out his free home tutoring services via or by calling 6266 4475 directly today.