The ‘do not disturb’ sign is there for a reason, moms and dads. Their desire for privacy is a healthy sign they’re growing up! There’s a million and one reasons why they need their space online and offline as they figure out who they wanna be in this world and where to fit in (think: independence and autonomy for the win). Trust me, the adjustment can feel wobbly, but rest assured, privacy doesn’t mean your kids have something big to hide.
Speaking of trust, privacy can’t exist without it
Trust is a two-way street. Teens want to be trusted for handling more as they mature. Parents want to trust them to have private matters, and know when it’s actually important to step in for safety and security reasons. Everyone’s learning new dance moves.
Here’s a good place to start. When figuring out just how much privacy and freedom your teen’s ready for, gauge how responsible they are with the basics. We’re talking: getting to school on time, doing homework, respecting curfew, and checking off chores. If this is easy said easy done, then maybe they’ve earned some more privacy points, which looks like:
- Giving them time alone
- Knocking on their door before entering
- Leaving their cell phone alone and resisting the urge to snoop
- Leaving their journals and notebooks alone