Make the transition from teen to young adult easier by allowing your teen take it step by step. This means introducing real life responsibilities that they will need to be a better flatmate, partner and parent. And if they guilt trip you about other kids having it “much easier”, hold your line, and remember you’re teaching them how to be a self-reliant and independent adult. Practise makes perfect.
Handouts are not a given, meaning entertainment money, money for food and drink outside the house, spending money for on holiday, phone top-ups, and general treats need to be funded by a part-time job.
Why? To learn that stuff costs money, and money takes time and effort to earn.
Personal hygiene is now your own responsibility. Have a shower when you need one, make your bed, change your sheets, clean your soccer boots, put your clothes in the wash, empty your overnight bag, and clean your teeth without being asked.
Why? Because it’s embarrassing to have your parents ask you if you’ve showered today, and your habits will now reflect on you (not your mum and dad).
Your birthday parties and friend-get-togethers at home will now require your help for planning, preparation, and cleanup.
Why? You’ll have more fun if you help plan and prep it, you’ll be allowed to do it again, and it will set you up as a good party planner. You’ll also really enjoy other friends’ parties and appreciate the effort that went into them!
Taking public transport might be your only option, so study up on how to catch buses and trains. Get a local transport card and get mobile.
Why? If you can organise your own transport, it will give you more freedom to get involved in after school activities and socialise with your friends. Parents are often busy working and managing more than one child, so can‘t always get you to where you need to go.
Saving for a car
Want to drive? Then start a savings plan and get a part-time job to help fund the car, petrol, insurance, registration, servicing, maintenance, and parking (if a permit is required). If you’re not 16 yet, it’s a great idea to start early.
Why? Because it’s super cool to start driving and gain the freedom to get where you need to, but cars can be pricey.
Make your own appointments for doctors and other services.
Why? It’s a life skill to manage your own time and communicate on the phone.
Make your own lunches and snacks (and a dinner occasionally while you’re at it). You are capable of making and compiling a healthy lunchbox with food you love. Just get organised the night before if you wake up late.
Why? It’s liberating to be able to cook the food you enjoy to eat, when you want to eat it.
Help around the house more than you used to. Get involved in meaningful chores like washing, cleaning bathrooms and kitchens, and garden tidy-up that all help take the workload off your parents.
Why? Flatting is a major shock if you haven’t had exposure to these things, and no one likes living with a slob.
Don’t compare your workload to younger siblings.
Why? Until you’re all adults, they’ll always be behind you on the responsibility scale. Remember, everyone has their time.
By The Mum Squad