A teenage life is something to be handled with utmost care, for it is the stage of life where the emotional, intellectual, social, and spiritual foundations are cemented for future paths leading to adulthood. The starting years of 0–7 are when foundations are laid, but during the teenage years are when foundations are established as permanent.
Let me first say that I am a born again Christian, so it may seem that my advice here will sound religious. However, far from it, but only being spiritual and honest and concern. I would like to give what I firmly believe is the best, and that includes God and His Word.
First, bring your teenage child to yourself. Make sure that you are best friends, or at least close friends. In the Philippines there is a trend that most teenagers are aloof to their parents. Before you can bring good influence to your teenager, you must first be close.
Ephesians 6:1-3 (KJV) Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.
Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;)
That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.
Second, bring your teenage child to God, or to Jesus. This may sound irrelevant or corny or misplaced, but trust me, from my heart I am telling you that this is the best thing you can give to your children. This is greater than good education or great inheritance. Only God can direct the child’s life for good.
Proverbs 22:6 (KJV) Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
Psalms 119:9 (KJV) Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.
This should not necessarily mean being religious at the first approach. Rather, it is about being happy in God and being happy with the people of God. To make this a lot easier, find a Christian youth group who can be friends with your teenager. This way, the transition will not be that hard for they are all teenagers.
Proverbs 18:24 (KJV) A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.
Third, let your teenager enjoy the youthful years. Don’t be so strict. As long as what the child wants is not bad or evil, you may give it in moderation. Also, do not be so loose. Everything must be used or gained in moderation. Too much of any good thing could turn up bad.
Fourth, expose your teenager to the path of adulthood. Time flies fast. The best way to tell your teenager about the responsibilities be or she will soon take is now. You should balance though the previous one and this fourth advice.
Fifth, give your teenager some good books to read. This may include a Youth Bible or any Christian Literature geared towards the youth.
Not to disappoint you but rather to be honest, I am a single man. I don’t have a child. But based from many years of handling youth in the Church, counseling youth from different sectors, and hearing from parents about their teenagers, these five points are among the top ways that I would give to anyone who desires to have his or her teenage child grow up good.