You can listen to the people who tell you teens can't be trusted, or you can listen to two expert moms who don't want you to waste a single minute disliking your teenager. If the latter sounds good to you -- this is your book!
Lenore Skenazy, author of Free-Range Kids
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As the CEO of Envision Possibilities and the mom of twins I was delighted to read this book now before entering the teen years. The authors have put together a masterpiece that truly teaches you as a parent not to fear the teen years. I especially enjoyed the chapter on how listening is effective, because I work with busy moms who want to take their life back I will use this as a resource for those moms who have teenagers to help them navigate the parenting waters.
Dixie Andrade - the Mom Coach
Relationship building through Learning to Drive (from guest blogger Landon Biehl)
One of the most difficult times for parents is letting go and allowing their teens to get behind the wheel. After many years of being accustomed to having children sit in the passenger seat, it’s an odd feeling to have roles swapped and allow teens to sit in the driver’s seat.
When we are teaching them the ins and outs of driving techniques, we open the door to sharing stories on common grounds and strengthening our relationships.
Share with your teen stories of your early experiences driving. Share mistakes made, points quickly learned, and tips that will help your teen to further understand strategies for effective driving. Be sure to listen as they share their experiences, concerns and their questions. These conversations can lead into past stories of high school experiences, so your teens can find out new things they might not know about their parents. And parents, you may find out a few things, too!
One of the most profound ways that learning to drive can build your relationship is the amount of trust you can show your teen. The instant parents allow a teen to operate their car while sitting alongside in the passenger seat, the parents verify their high level of trust that the teen has the ability and knowledge to operate this valuable thing, the car, with them in it. This is different from the trust worthiness of the teen in terms of integrity. By allowing teens to practice driving in your car, you are letting them know that you are confident in their learning ability and driving skills.
A great way parents can further develop their relationship with teens and promote safe driving is through repairing or maintaining the car together. With this, parents are able to teach their teens how to safely maintain their automobile with regular oil changes, checking tire pressure, checking basic fluids, and much more. Teens will be able to identify risks associated with their cars with this knowledge, and it gives parents a hands-on activity they can complete with their teens. These skills can easily and quickly be learned by parents if they do not have the expertise regarding these practices. Learning together is a good way for parents and teens to connect.
Another excellent activity to strengthen our relationship with teens is to take advantage of safety resources online, together. An excellent texting and driving game was recently created to safely demonstrate how dangerous distracted driving can be. This is an excellent, interactive game for parents to play with teens.
Learning to drive and to take care of a car can be an opportunity for parents to promote safety while building relationships with our teens. With the new school year upon us, it is a good time to keep in mind that sharing common ground with teens can help us to further develop relationships with our teens.
Landon Biehl lives in Wilmington, North Carolina and shares his views of the importance of road safety among teens. For more information on his texting and driving game, please go to www.stayalivegame.org