What is your best parenting advice to raise a teen?


macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 25, 2012
I am single so no teen(s) yet but I do work with people who are parents. Today my co-worker told me about his teen son spending a lot of time outside hanging out with friends and not being home as much. His son's grades are suffering, and he doesn't know what to do. My co-worker is a 54 year old man, very successful in what he does in the company. He spends a lot of time at work because... well, he's more experienced than any of us.

I found myself staring at him with not much to say except talk to his kid. Any parents out there that has raised a teen and has better advice? I really want to help the guy but I'm completely clueless as to what to tell him.


macrumors Nehalem
Feb 19, 2005
No disrespect but you wanting to help is nice but this is way above your capacity. If he is concerned he should seek adult professional help.


macrumors 68030
Jul 26, 2011
And every teen is different, what I use to snap my son to attention may not work for his and vice-versa!

ender land

macrumors 6502a
Oct 26, 2010
My co-worker is a 54 year old man, very successful in what he does in the company. He spends a lot of time at work because... well, he's more experienced than any of us.

This is probably a good place to start with your answer.


macrumors G3
Feb 26, 2011
New England, USA
If his grades don't come up confiscate his phone. Problem solved. Next.
It must be nice to live in your world of simplistic solutions to complex problems.

OP: I agree with the general tone of the responses here... listen to your friend, sympathize, do not offer advice except, perhaps, to talk to a professional.

Dealing with an adolescent is a complex problem requiring careful evaluation of the issues particular to that family. Generic, one-size-fits-all advice is less than useless, it can, at worst, be dangerous.


Staff member
May 3, 2009
My advice - don't really give advice but be supporting.

Its tough to advise someone how to proceed when you really don't have the entire situation and not being a parent is difficult.

Being friend to help and support is the best thing, imo


macrumors 6502
Aug 2, 2008
Tell him to man up and discipline his child. Tell him if it's wants to be successful he better get good grades. Rookies.


macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2011
my disaster started at about 7, so maybe his kid is just a late bloomer. no one to blame except himself, stay out of it.


macrumors member
Nov 30, 2011
On Top Of The World
I think its better to find what is making him hangout with other kids.
There must be some interesting topic with one of his friend, or one of his friend is driving interest into something other than studies.

After finding enforce appropriate constraint to limit that activity, or educate about its good and bads ,so that he will find new topic of his interest may be back to studies ?.

Rodimus Prime

macrumors G4
Oct 9, 2006
This is probably a good place to start with your answer.
Kind of my thought on it. Some times just offering and spending time with ones kid helps. Just do not make it mandatory so to speak.

For example my dad and I would often times bond over working on my car or one of the other cars. The working being basic maintenance stuff on cars (oil changes brakes ect.)
Or fixing something in the house. That was me. My brother had nor has any interest in that stuff so those would tend to shot hoops in the drive way. Sister my dad coach. Each one of us was different but a big part was just spending time or offering to spend the time.

That being said that not saying sometimes my brother and I still got the stick so to speak from my parents but it normally started with the carrot before the stick came out when the carrot failed. Heck in terms of what worked on me would not work on my brother in either the carrot or the stick and the same the other way around. We each were very different. For my sister the carrot was all that was ever needed and even then that was rare.


macrumors P6
Jun 19, 2009
Where bunnies are welcome.
You also grew up with the technology we have today? Facebook, Cyberbullying, etc.?
Each generation has their own set of problems. You're not special. For example, how about actual physical bullying, since we didn't have your technology? Having to run to your bus to get home, because you've been threatened with getting shot by some DB in school? Having severe acne, having one of the pimples accidentally pop and bleed in class, and being made fun of by everyone? Not being able to reach out for help, since we didn't have your technology? I'm sure others from before your generation can add many more examples. It's hard being a teenager.
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