When Moody Teens Resent Their Parents

It feels like yesterday you were sending your baby off to kindergarten in her favorite Minnie Mouse shirt and watching her face light up with excitement when she returned home. This excitement continued through her grade school years, but now high school has hit. You’re starting to realize that the teenage years bring a roller coaster ride of emotions. One moment your teenager will be laughing and smiling, and the next she will be scowling and making you feel like the worst parent on the planet.

While your first instinct might be to assume that your teenager has manic-depression or some other emotional disorder, it’s important to realize that many teens experience mood swings. It is a perfectly normal behavior for your teen to act out as they experience physical, emotional, and psychological changes in their body. Make an effort to understand what’s happening in your teen’s life, and then you can start to develop strategies to help your family weather the storm of the teenage years.

Understand changes in mood

Depending on the mood, your teenager may be trying to tell you something. They may be starved for attention and seeking help, and the acting out might be a cry for help with school, friends, or personal problems. Moodiness can be brought on by depression, failure, and loneliness. Stress and anxiety can also cause a teenager’s body to overreact and cause a wave of emotions. It is possible that your teen’s moodiness is a sign for something more serious.

It is also possible, though, that your teenager’s moodiness is simply a by-product of puberty. Hormones greatly affect the teenager’s brain as it develops into a young adult. As the brain develops, it often releases surges of different chemicals and hormones that can cause a teenager’s emotions to shift constantly. Puberty also introduces new body changes to the teenager, and depending on how they respond to these changes, mood levels may change. Mood swings are a typical side effect of this growth.

Strategies for mood teens

Many parents do not know how to act around their moody teenager, but one of the best thing to do is for you to open all means of communication. Be available to talk to your teen and discuss what is on their mind. Even if what is wrong seems like a minor or meaningless thing, let them vent and see that you care. Do not patronize them or trivialize their problems, but instead, listen intently and offer them whatever advice you can. When they need space, give it to them.

If the moodiness continues and does not seem to stop, you may want to look into getting help for your teenager. They may be suffering from a psychological problem like depression. Depression is quite common, but luckily, the disorder can be easily treated to help your teenager control their mood swings. Communicate and be a friend to your teenager to fully understand the reason for their unhappiness.

Note: This article was written for a ministry serving parents and troubled teens.