10 Ways to Spend Quality Time with Your Teen

Ideas to Help Build Your Relationship

family dinner
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It can be difficult to find a way to connect with teens. Now that they’ve outgrown a lot of childhood activities, it may seem like there is not much to do together for fun. Unfortunately, many teens begin to drift apart from their parents because they don’t spend quality time together.

Many teens spend large amounts of time in their rooms instead of with their parents. Although it’s developmentally normal for teens to become increasingly independent, it is essential that parents maintain a good relationship with them.

Create opportunities to spend quality time with your child as often as possible, even if it is just for a few minutes a day.

1. Turn off the Electronics

If you’re like most families these days, electronics are likely to get in the way of quality time with your teen. Set limits on screen time to reduce the amount of time the family is using electronics. Create rules about when electronics need to be shut off.

Consider making a “no electronics” time at least once a week. Even if it’s just for an hour, shut off all TVs, computers and cell phones and see what happens. It’s likely you’ll have a much better chance at getting your teen to talk to you.

2. Eat Dinner Together

Eating dinner - or at least one meal per day together - can create an opportunity to talk to your teen. During meal times, shut off the electronics and focus on the conversation.

It can be the best way to find out about your teen’s day.

3. Step Into Your Teen’s World

It’s likely that your teen is into some things that you know nothing about. Be willing to step into your teen’s world, even when it’s not something you particularly enjoy.

For example, if your teen enjoys video games, be willing to try playing.

Let your teen teach you about it or show you something new.

4. Do Something Active

Sometimes teens aren’t much for just sitting and talking. But, if you get them to play catch or do something that gets you moving, it can lead to more natural conversations.

5. Do Something Nice for Others Together

There’s something about doing a good deed that really helps improve a relationship. Whether you make a meal for a neighbor or participate in a community service project, it can do wonders for your relationship.  It can give you time to talk and can also help your teen see the value in helping others.

6. Go for a Ride

Car rides can be an excellent way to strike up a conversation. One of the good things about riding in a car is that you don’t have to make eye contact. This can help many teens feel more comfortable bringing up uncomfortable subjects.

7. Go for a Walk

Not only does going for a walk give you an added health benefit, but it can also be a good way to spend quality time with your teen.

A stroll around the neighborhood gets you away from all the distractions at home and it can give you a chance to talk privately.

8. Do a Project Together

Although many teens might complain about having to get involved in a project, they often enjoy it once they get started. Whether you’re washing your car or painting a room, invite your teen to get involved.

9. Teach Your Teen Something New

Show your child how to do something new. Whether you can pass on your cooking skills or you can help your teen learn Chinese, offer to help your teen learning something new.

Don’t force it if your teen isn’t interested. However, you will often find they’re very interested in understanding how you do the things you do.

10. Schedule a Family Night

Set aside time for the entire family to spend time together. Whether you choose to play board games once a month or watch a movie once a week, make it a tradition. This can be important toward building a quality relationship with your teen.

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