Parenting Your Teenager: The Law of Modeling

Jeff Herring
 


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When my oldest son was about four and going to a pre-school kind of program, I noticed that he was beginning to say “oh man!" whenever he got frustrated with something.

"See, that's what happens when you send them off to be in herds all day, they come home with all this language stuff. "

A few days later on that weekend, I'm in the garage working on a project. I get frustrated and find myself saying “oh man!"

Oh. He's getting those words from me.

That was my first lesson in just how very well our children will model what we do and say.

It's really kind of scary. No, it's really very frightening. It's frightening because toddlers and teenagers are in very many ways the same beast.

And what's even more frightening, we create our teenagers when they are toddlers.

One way to use this information is whenever you are wondering about a behavior in a toddler, add 10 years to it.

Teens can be very obedient

Teens can be very obedient. They will act exactly like we act.

If you don't want your teen doing something, make sure you are not doing it yourself. Teens have very strong and sensitive hypocrisy meters and are eager to use them.

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