Why Teenagers Are Often Rebellious and Turn Against Their Parents

Teenagers are known for being rebellious and parents often face the adolescent phase in their children’s lives with trepidation. Driving too fast, smoking, getting drunk and blatantly flouting rules often takes place in the teenage years.

It’s a tumultuous phase where parents may feel their relationship with the teen is in danger. Understanding why a teenager is rebellious can be helpful to parents who want to know how to better handle this phase.

Their brains are developing

The prefrontal cortex, a part of the brain behind the forehead, is developing in the teenage years. This is the area of the brain that allows teens to start developing their own ideas and making their own judgments. Their brains become capable of synthesizing information into ideas and they often begin by exercising this new skill on their parents. Even the most balanced teenagers tend to argue and challenge their parents. This arguing and testing of boundaries ultimately helps them to mature.

Vernon Counselling can help by providing the teen with someone to vent to, while offering support to parents so they can set the kind of boundaries and rules that will help the teen to thrive.

They’re becoming more independent

Teenagers naturally start wanting more freedom and independence. Parents may unconsciously confuse this desire with rebellion and feel the child is slipping out of their grasp. For example, if they refuse a teen permission to hang out at the mall with friends for fear of the trouble he could get into, the teen is likely to rebel by sneaking out without permission.

A parent’s negative reactions to a teen’s growing need for independence may fuel rebellion. It is often difficult for a parent to start giving a teenager more independence but parents who become overprotective can make a teenager feel trapped. Teenagers need a certain amount of freedom to prepare themselves for the real world once they leave home.

They’re struggling to establish their identity

When teenagers enter their adolescent years, they often find themselves asking existential questions like “Who am I?” and “What’s the purpose of my life?” that may not have crossed their minds at earlier stages of development. They ask these questions because they are trying to find their own identity and establish their individuality apart from their parents.

Teens want more control over their lives

Body piercing, tattoos and the music they listen to or clothes they wear are just some of the ways teenagers choose to express themselves. They may rebel when their parents become authoritative and try to make too many decisions for them. If they believe their parents don’t trust their ability to make any decisions for themselves, they often become rebellious.

Parents should not control them to the extent that their home becomes an unpleasant and confining space they want to avoid. On the other hand, giving them too much freedom can make them feel directionless or even unloved.

They have a strong desire for acceptance

Teens are influenced by their peers. It matters to them what their peers think about them and they often have a desperate need to fit in. Today this pressure starts at an early age when they’re too young to resist.

They feel pressure to do what everyone else is doing. This can cause rebellion because they may listen to their peers rather than to their parents. The hormonal changes taking place in their bodies can lead them to make rash decisions and act impulsively. It is vital for parents to teach their teenagers how to resist peer pressure and help them to make the right choices.