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Managing Adolescent Love During Covid-19

December 14, 2020

Adolescent love during covid-19.

It’s difficult on the adolescent and it’s difficult on the parents.

It tends to be even more difficult if there were prior behavior challenges with the teens involved. Now with love between them, they strive to be inseparable. As the parent tries to control their urges on their behalf, power and control issues escalate. Soon they are both at one or the other’s house.

At this stage one set of parents is positioned as the bad guys and the other set as permissive, acting as the teens friends, offering too much freedom and little supervision. As such, there is little to no respect between the parents.

If there are concerns for health vulnerabilities and the spread of COVID-19, this whole scenario can go nuclear.

The real challenge is to appreciate the impact of previous power and control or the use of punishment issues by one set of parents as well as permissive parenting by the other. Like a magnet, it is not uncommon for these issues to be drawn together.

However, rather than concentrating on the issues of the other home, parents are advised to concentrate on the only factors of which they have control: themselves.

Now, change in these scenarios do not come quickly or easily.

Change is the result of parents addressing their own issues, be it learning how to work with their teen through a developing relationship versus a punishment or controlling model, or learning how to set limits, boundaries and expectations also through a relationship model.

In both homes it is common that the parents fear losing their teen to the issue of their adolescent love, that this will be the issue by which their child leaves home young and/or finds their way to greater troubles and responsibilities.

Beyond self-examination and learning how to speak differently with their teen, all the parents can talk between themselves. In so doing the challenge is to resist giving the other a piece of their mind in favor of acknowledging one’s own parental shortcomings they are looking to overcome. With that parents should look to make allies of each other.

Again, these situations do not change quickly or easily.

The support and guidance of a therapist can be helpful to the parents.

Patience will definitely be challenged.


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I am Gary Direnfeld and I am a social worker. Check out all my services and then call me if you need help with a personal issue, mental health concern, child behavior or relationship, divorce or separation issue or even help growing your practice. I am available in person and by video conferencing.

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Gary Direnfeld, MSW, RSW

gary@yoursocialworker.com
www.yoursocialworker.com for counseling and support

www.garydirenfeld.com – to build your successful practice

Gary Direnfeld is a social worker. Courts in Ontario, Canada, consider him an expert in social work, marital and family therapy, child development, parent-child relations and custody and access matters. Gary is the host of the TV reality show, Newlywed, Nearly Dead, former parenting columnist for the Hamilton Spectator and author of Marriage Rescue: Overcoming the ten deadly sins in failing relationships. Gary maintains a private practice in Georgina Ontario, providing a range of services for people in distress. He speaks at conferences and workshops throughout North America. He consults to mental health professionals as well as to mediators and collaborative law professionals about good practice as well as building their practice.

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