How To Deal With A Rebellious Teenager

rebellious teenager

At some point during the teenage years, everyone experiences the “rebellious” phase where they are constantly doing the opposite of what their parents want them to do. Some examples of teenage rebellion include drinking alcohol, substance abuse, not talking to or listening to parents, and more. It’s something that most parents have to deal with and dread. To help you with your rebellious teenager, learn about the warning signs, why it is happening, and how to deal with it. 

Warning Signs That Your Teen Is Being Rebellious

Mood Swings

During the teen years, kids go through hormonal changes that can alter their mood. One minute they are the perfect child and the next they are utterly rude to you. If you notice this rebellious behavior along with anger, depression, and defiance, your child is likely in their rebellious phase. 

They Want Their Privacy

When children become young adults, they start to want their privacy. They don’t want their parents budding into their life, worrying about what’s going on every second of the day. They will isolate themselves in their room and/or slam their door to make it clear they want their privacy. 

They Don’t Talk To You As Much

Children while growing up often confide in their parents regarding what is going on in their life with friends, school, and sports. However, when your child becomes a teen, your relationship with them often changes. Teens usually don’t talk with their parents as often about their daily activities, and instead, usually speak with friends instead. 

Says “No” To You A Lot

As an act of defiance, teens will often say “No” and refuse to do things their parents want them to do. This is one of the typical teen problems most parents experience. Examples include refusing to do chores, using their cell phone at the dinner table, or avoiding activities with their family. 

Lose Interest In Childhood Hobbies

Often during the rebellious teen phase, teens will think they have to give up childish hobbies and interests to seem more grown up. What they used to think of as cool and amazing are now silly and stupid. 

Become More Independent

Becoming a teen is the first step to adulthood. Teenagers will want to do everything on their own, without their parent’s help. This includes getting a job and not wanting their parents babying them. 

Voice Their Opinions

As one grows up, they develop their own voice and opinions. This combined with hormonal changes leads them to constantly voice what they think to their parents, good or bad. This can lead to regular arguments and frustration among teenagers and their parents as well. 

Doing What You Don’t Want Them To Do

A clear sign your teen is rebellious is doing the complete opposite of what you want them to do or doing things you don’t want them to do. This could be playing video games all night long, taking drugs, drinking alcohol, going to parties, and coming home past curfew. 


Why Are They Acting Like This? 

They Want Control Over Their Lives

Becoming a teen to many is the first step to independence and making your own decisions. Teenagers often will want to do what they want, when they want, and not have their parents controlling their life. 

Attention Seeking

Sometimes, teenagers are just looking for attention whether it be from parents, friends, teachers, or strangers. Now, the real reason(s) behind this behavior can vary such as depression, neglect, lack of confidence, and even mental health issues like bipolar disorder. 

Want To Have Freedom 

Teens can’t wait to get their first taste of freedom during these years. Going to parties, hanging with friends, driving, extended curfew, and more. However, teenagers take their need for freedom too far when they start rebelling against their parent’s set rules like no drinking and drugs, and staying out late. 

Figuring Out Their Identity

As one grows up, even during the adult years, they are trying to figure out their identity and who they are. What’s their fashion style? What kind of music do they like? What are their interests and hobbies? What do they believe in? The teenage years are a time where one can experiment with their identity and figure themselves out, even if their parents don’t agree. 


How To Deal With A Rebellious Teenager

Figure Out The Source of Their Rebellion

The first step to dealing with your teen’s rebellion is figuring out why they are doing so in the first place. Are they being bullied? Did a specific event cause their rebellion? Are you being too controlling over your child? Understanding the cause will help you create the right decisions to move forward. 

Loosen The Reins On Your Teen

Executing control over your teen’s life is the worst thing you can do, especially if they are rebellious. Give your teen space, freedom, and responsibility to make them feel independent and help them discover themselves. However, don’t loosen the reins to the point that it seems like you don’t care about them. 

Establish Boundaries and Rules

Your teen must understand that just because you are giving them some freedom, doesn’t mean they can do whatever they want or ignore you. Sit down with your teen and come up with certain boundaries or rules they need to follow without seeming overbearing. By talking with your teen about their feelings, they will feel like you take their opinion into consideration. 

Don’t Give In

Whatever shenanigans your teen pulls, don’t give in. Just because your teen has more freedom, doesn’t mean they can walk all over you. There are certain rules they must follow and tasks you expect them to do. If you give in, you will ultimately lose your child’s respect. 

Check-Ins and Open Family Meetings

Have regular check-ins and family meetings with your teen, even if it’s just a few minutes. Show that you are emotionally invested in your teen and their life without seeming invasive. 

By following the above tips and looking out for the warning signs, you can detect early on if your teen is in their rebellious phase. Thankfully, this time in their life is temporary and not long term. Just hang in there and both your teen and you will be through it unscathed. 

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Corinne Evans
Avid blogger, go-to maid of honor, self-proclaimed fashionista, and not-so-secret watcher of reality television.

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