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Supporting your teenage children during coronavirus

Being a teenager is a difficult period in anyone’s life. With the coronavirus outbreak happening your teenage children may be finding it more difficult than usual. Teenagers will be well aware of the situation and they may be scared or frustrated about what’s going on. Being separated from their friends will be troubling them too. And they may be anxious about what missing school and exams might mean for their future. We’ve put together some advice to help you reassure them.

Talking to them

The limited freedom at the moment may be particularly hard on teenagers. Not being able to see their friends might make them feel lonely and isolated. It’s important to let them know that you’re there to talk to them about what’s going on. We have some advice on talking to your children about coronavirus to help you.

Online safety

You might find your teenager is spending more time online. This is not necessarily a bad thing. Social media has been a lifeline for many teenagers letting them connect with their friends, have fun, and support each other. We have some information on online safety and how to help your children use the internet safely way.

Missing school

Even if they weren’t too upset when the schools first closed, they may be beginning to worry about the impact it could have on their future. They might be particularly worried if they had exams cancelled. Reassure them that everyone is in the same boat, and that any work or revising they have already done was not wasted. Young Minds has a great page that may help your child with any uncertainties or anxiety.

Dealing with conflict

You and your teenager might get on great, but being together for weeks on end could be difficult. Don’t beat yourself up if arguments happen. Just try to appreciate that this is as difficult for them as it is for you. The Young Scot website has some useful information to help your child deal with conflict here.

Routine

Having a routine is just as important for teenagers as it is for younger children. Going to bed at the same time and keeping mealtimes around the same time is a good way of bringing some structure into the day. Exercise is important for everyone’s mental health, even teenagers. Here is some advice on how to help keep them active.

Further support

The Cyrenians and the Scottish Centre for Conflict Resolution (SCCR) have some resources to help you manage conflict at home. Young Scot and Young Mind also have articles to help young people deal with the coronavirus outbreak. NHS Inform and Childline also have resources on their websites on how to cope.