^ Back to Top

Teen Communication

Gentle Ways To Give Your Teen Constructive Criticism

Posted by Sue Scheff on August 23, 2021  /   Posted in Featured Article, Parenting Teens, Teen Help

Ways to Talk to Your Teen About Constructive Criticism

Help Your Teens UnSplashTeenCriticism-300x223 Gentle Ways To Give Your Teen Constructive Criticism One of the most important and challenging skills to learn as a parent is how to give your teen constructive criticism. Many parents struggle to find the fine line between being overly critical and being constructive with the feedback they give their teens.

Despite the discomfort that often comes with both providing and receiving feedback, it is an inevitable part of life. Learning how to give your teen constructive yet gentle criticism will help them foster a healthy relationship with criticism and maintain a healthy relationship with you.

Receiving constructive criticism is healthy for your teen

Constructive criticism not only provides your teen with an opportunity to improve but also builds their resilience. Throughout their lives, they will face countless criticisms–both constructive and destructive.

Receiving gentle feedback from you exposes them to a healthy form of criticism. It teaches them that feedback is not intended to put them down but to build them up into a better version of themselves. ‘It means you wholeheartedly believe in their ability to do better. Giving your teen constructive criticism the right way enables them to distinguish healthy and supportive feedback from criticism that is cruel and harmful,” says Marian Larson, a writer at Studydemic and Academized.

Create a safe space for your teen to receive feedback

Help Your Teens PexelTeenMomTalking-300x203 Gentle Ways To Give Your Teen Constructive Criticism Before assailing your teen with countless ways to improve, ensure you have cultivated a relationship that actually makes them feel safe to receive feedback from you.

Do you listen to them when they speak? Truly listen. With no judgment, but with the aim to understand them better.

Can they trust you to only give feedback with the intention to help them improve? Feedback that isn’t laced with shame or blame?

Do you talk to your teen or do you talk at them? Are your conversations a two-way street?

Criticizing your teen is easy and almost as natural as breathing to most parents, but the difficulty lies in convincing them to listen. Just like any other relationship, effective communication with your teen requires a two-way street. Building a healthy, loving relationship based on mutual respect and trust is necessary if you want your teen to listen to you.

Avoid shaming, overly criticizing, or comparing your teen to others

It can be difficult sometimes to recognize the difference between parenting and shaming, especially so if your own parents corrected your behavior this way growing up. “If shame-ridden and guilt-loaded criticism was the only style of behavior modification parenting used on you by your parents, it can even seem like the norm. This mentally harmful cycle should end with you,” explains Dana Wilson, a parenting blogger.

A general good rule of thumb is that constructive criticism addresses a specific behavior. Focus on the action that requires improvement instead of your teen’s character. Avoid shaming statements that accuse them of being something wrong as opposed to doing something wrong. There’s a difference between your teen being lazy and your teen not doing their chores as consistently as you would like them to. One is a character flaw, the other is a behavior that can be easily fixed.

Implying something is wrong with who they are could seriously damage your teen’s confidence and mental health. Instead, identify the behavior that you would like them to change, explain your reasoning for wanting the change, and clearly state what they can do to improve.

Another hurtful style of parenting to avoid is comparing your teen to someone else. It suggests that they are not good enough for you. This could breed harmful tendencies such as feelings of inadequacy, self-doubt, and self-loathing.

Frame mistakes as opportunities for personal growth

Define mistakes to your teen as opportunities to learn through experience. It’s what you do after a stumble that matters most, not the fact that you stumbled.

Criticism should be followed by affirmations of their positive traits to reassure your teen that they are more than their worst mistakes. This also reminds them of their capabilities and encourages them to do better.

Explore your own relationship with criticism

Do you speak to yourself with kindness and compassion after a mistake? Or are you overly critical and mean? Your relationship with yourself tends to determine your relationships with other people, including your teen. Modeling a healthy way of responding to constructive criticism can cause your teen to imitate your approach. Remember that you are your teen’s most influential role model, regardless of whether they like to admit it or not. So go easy on yourself. You’re doing the best you can.

 Emily Henry is a writer and editor with a passion for healthy living. You can find her writing at Top Canadian Writers and Essay Writing Services, and her editing work at Assignment Help.

Tags: ,,

As Featured On

Help Your Teens DrPhil_Season_7_title_card1-250x139 Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens oprah-logo-250x1091 Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens PLATFORMforgood Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens ParentingTodaysKids Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens sunsentinel Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens Galtime Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens FoxNews1 Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens Forbes-Magazine-Logo-Font Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens huffington-post-logo Home Bottom - Logos
Help Your Teens family-online-safety-300x112 Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens TodayMoms Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens usatoday Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens washpost Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens abcnews Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens CNN-living1 Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens anderson-cooper-360-logo-250x107 Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens cbs_eve_logo Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens nbc6 Home Bottom - Logos Help Your Teens newsweek Home Bottom - Logos

..and many more.

  • Follow @SueScheff

  • RSS Sue Scheff Blog

    • How Therapeutic Boarding Schools Can Help Cellphone Addiction December 20, 2021
      Can Teen Help Programs Help Cellphone Addiction? Teen Cellphone and Internet Addiction In today’s society, the internet can be a valuable asset and educational tool, as well as a dangerous attraction and lethal weapon. Many teens are turning to social networking sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok to make friends, mingle and more. […]
    • Teen Online Safety Tips October 15, 2021
      As a parent, you want to protect your child from the dangers of the internet. There are countless stories of predators, hackers, and thieves targeting and exploiting young adults. To avoid this, many parents will go as far as to limit or prohibit their child’s use of the internet. However, this solution isn’t practical. The […]
    • Could Instagram Be Damaging Our Teens? September 29, 2021
      Facebook Knew Instagram Could Be Harmful to Our Teens The tech giant has studied how the app affects youth. An article in The Wall Street Journal reports that Facebook’s own documents found Instagram to be damaging to teens. A 2017 survey, published by the U.K.’s Royal Society for Public Health, found Instagram to be “worst […]

To get help, CLICK HERE or call us at 954-260-0805
P.U.R.E. does not provide legal advice and does not have an attorney on staff.
^ Back to Top
Copyright © 2001-2022 Help Your Teens. Optimized Web Design by SEO Web Mechanics Site Map