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  • Peer Relationships

    • Model healthy relationships with others  The first place teens learn about positive relationships is in the family. What they learn and experience within the family (parents and/or siblings) has considerable influence on how they form and relate to friends later
    • Maintain a positive relationship  It is very important that parents have positive relationships with their teenage children. Teens that have healthy parental relationships are more likely to form more positive relationships with their peers. This would also include healthy romantic relationships, as well. A positive parent-teen relationship is characterized by warmth and caring, while also setting behavioral boundaries and maintaining high expectations.
    • Encourage positive friendships.  It is important to welcome your teenager’s friends to your home.  Provide support for them to do activities together. Encourage participation in activities with positive peer groups. Examples of these would be: school activities, youth programs, sports programs and religious activities.
    • Teach friendship skills. Children and teenagers need to learn how to begin a conversation with new person. Equally important is how to show empathy and support to a friend.  Peer relationships are likely to be positive when children and teenagers know how to resolve conflicts through discussion and when teens develop trust in each other.
    • Know your teen’s friends. Parents should always know where their teens spend time, who they are with, and what they are planning to do. Then you have the opportunity to ask questions, or add information. Try to offer support for the friendship depending on the situation.

    Express concerns, ask questions, and set limits, when necessary   Sometimes parents are uncomfortable with some of the teenager’s friends.  Parents may feel that this person is a not positive influence. Parent need to talk about their concerns with their son or daughter, Teach him or her how to think about relationships. Be open and  listen to what your son or daughter has to say about the friend. If the relationship makes the parents anxious, also talk about this.  It is better not to forbid a friendship, unless there is danger involved.