How to Drive Your Teens Crazy in 4 Easy Steps

Listen people. Driving your teens nutso is JUST GOOD PARENTING!

Some parents have mastered the skills necessary to raising children well. I’ve known several families that have a resident Super Mom and/or Super Dad, able to leap the tallest of parental difficulties in a single bound. Sometimes with just a word. The truly gifted parent can overcome many behavioral issues with just a look. Well actually, I’d call it “THE LOOK.”

These are generally parents of children under ten years of age.

These are the families where children clean up their rooms without being asked. The bests of parents never have to say, “Eat your peas,” and they never, ever have to tell children to stop arguing.

Even though there are some of these exceptional parents out there, chances are you are still looking for a few more good parenting tips to help you do the job right.

Every good parent, especially the parents of teenagers must master the skill of driving the kids crazy. It is best to hone this  skill before the kids hit puberty.

The wisest of parents know just the look, the exact tone, and the best phrase to drive kids crazy. They can whip out an arsenal of tactics strategically designed to irritate even the most compliant of children. (Do those exist?)

Another skill in effective parenting is employing the best moment to annoy kids for the maximum effect. If you don’t choose your timing correctly, you only provoke an argument, and that’s not the point of using this important parenting skill.

For those of you who have not hit the teenage years, listen closely. Though it may not seem like it at the moment, one day your little angels will morph into teenagers.

It is helpful for children to experience a little parental embarrassment from time to time.

1. Strategic Nagging.

Nothing works better than a good, strategic nag. Did you clean your room?” is most effective if you say it a minimum of five times before lunch. This tactic is imperative for your stay-sane household management.

Did you finish your homework? works well with a high-pitched voice, preferably right when teens want to watch tv, play video games, or hang out with friends.

How many times do I have to tell you…” is nearly always good for provoking loud sighs and eyeball rolling. Yes, the skill of strategic nagging will effectively drive your children nuts…and get them to do what you want them to do.

2. Enforce the Early Curfew.

Set a solid curfew–the earlier the better. Most teens errantly believe they have no need of a curfew, that nothing bad EVER happens after 10pm, and that they are the ONLY ONES with a curfew. Scientists have proven that this trait in teenagers is genetic, passing down from generation to generation. Gone are the days when teenagers are grateful for a good, old-fashioned early curfew.

Wise parents do not give into the societal and adolescent pressure to give children exactly what they want. And if you want to completely annoy your kids, enforce the early curfew with a good dose of grounding for coming home late. Few parents adhere to this method in today’s world, so it is certain to upset your children for the most effective lesson to be learned.

3. Set conservative standards.

I personally have had good success with this particular method. Conservative standards are most effective when it comes to issues of entertainment, fashion, and choice of friends. Our children seemed to froth at the mouth every time we said no to the request to go see the latest PG-13 movie. They simply could not understand what kind of pre-historic notions would cause us to insist that they be 13 to watch a PG-13 movie.

We got some serious points on the good, irritating parent scale for that one. There was at least one occasion  we didn’t let our fourteen year old see a PG-13 movie just to send them over the edge and prove who’s boss. (Just kidding, we just didn’t agree with the rating).

Conservative standards are also very useful when it comes to dress codes, particularly for teenaged girls. The best phrases to use in regard to clothing styles include, “Too short,” ” too tight,” and “too revealing.” These irritating phrases work wonders when shopping for shorts, bathing suits, and dresses.

4. Limit the use of technology.

Any parent can drive a child crazy by setting rules for the use of technology. Computer usage, TV watching, and video gaming are the tip of the iceberg. Limiting cell phone usage is the quickest way to stifle your children’s social media savy.

Who says three year olds need a cell phone? Why not make them wait until all their friends have one and clearly be the most annoying parent on the block? Another good strategy is to make lots of rules for the use of texting:

  • No texting at dinner
  • No ignoring the person next to you in favor of texting
  • No texting in school
  • No use of inappropriate language in texting
  • No texting during homework
  • No texting after 9 pm
  • No sleeping with your cell phone
  • No texting in church
  • No texting at sister’s piano recital
  • No texting at Grandma’s house
  • No texting people you don’t know

For healthy and happy kids, good parents master the art of frustrating kids in order to correct behavior, teach responsibility, and ensure success in life. For the best results, daily employ these four fail-proof steps to drive your kids crazy, build character, and raise happy children.

In reality, I don’t really enjoy frustrating my kids, but setting limits is an important part of parenting. Can we help it if that just happens to drive them crazy?

What’s your best method to drive your children crazy?

 

Ginger Harrington
A coffee-loving, picture-taking mom of three young adults. Ginger explores grace and truth with a dash of quirky as she writes at  GingerHarrington.com, as well as Guideposts, and Planting Roots. She’d love to connect with you on her blog, Facebook, or Twitter.

Comments