Sunday, September 18, 2011

5 Ways to Get Your Parents Off Your Back

#1  If you want to be trustworthy.

Photo by Erin Willis

The quickest way to destroy trust is to lie. But it’s our first instinct when we smell trouble. Fear can shoot a lie out of your mouth before you even realize it.  The trouble is, once that lie is out there, you can’t take it back. And before you know it, you have to tell another lie to cover that one. Lying is like quicksand, and it will bury your character.

The only way to avoid the quicksand is to avoid the lie to begin with. Tell the truth to your parents, even if it terrifies you. At least they’ll know they can believe you when you’re telling them something good, and they’ll go easier on you (most of them anyway) when you screw up. Cause face it…you’re a teenager; you’re going to screw up. 

See, here’s the thing…your parents actually WANT to trust you. But they also love you so much, they’re terrified beyond all reason that something bad is going to happen to you. And the more responsibility they give you, the more terrified they are that they’re going to give you too much, and you’ll end up dead in a ditch somewhere. Maybe it’s irrational, but trust me…you’d much rather have parents that are all over you because they love you so much than parents that don’t give a rip where you are or what you’re doing.

But, you say, why does it have to be one crazy version or the other? Can’t I have some freedom and sane parents at the same time? Yes. Absolutely. But a lot of that depends on you. Now, you can tell me I’m wrong and argue with my advice all you want. It’s your freedom, your independence, your life. Ultimately, you are responsible for the choices you make.


So what can you do to increase the chances that your parents will let you do the things you enjoy? First of all, be where you say you’re going to be with the people you say you’re going to be with. Call when you say you’ll call. Be honest when you do something wrong or irresponsible. That way, you’re telling your parents that you can learn from your mistakes. Learn to say, “I’m sorry (Mom/Dad). What I did was wrong. I shouldn’t have (fill in the blank). Next time this happens I’ll (fill in the blank).” Then DO IT!

It’s not rocket science…it’s not even algebra. If you make a sincere effort to be who you really are, say what you really mean, and do what you say you’ll do, people in general (not just your parents) will be able to trust you. It’s hard. No one is perfect. But if you can be trusted to admit to and learn from your mistakes, then you can be trusted with the freedom to make them.

And that's your WWW for the day...

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