By Shannon, a 16 year old from Maryland. She enjoys writing, is pro recycling, and loves the Jonas Brothers. She is one of my fabulous teen interns.
Advice. Guidance. Direction.
Three things teens are always looking for.
Problems are something that we hate to deal with alone.
A lot of times when it comes to decision making we become incredibly indecisive, and rely heavily on the advice we get from those closest to us. We always consult the people we trust when we’re looking for answers.
“Pants or skirt?”
“When’s it okay to go all the way with my boyfriend?”
“How many drinks is too many to drive?”
“Where’s the line between asking for help and copying answers?”
Having someone trustworthy to go to for advice is important for a teenager. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in a problem that our judgment is clouded and there are angles that we can’t see. Getting someone else’s opinion offers fresh perspective.
I’ve found that it’s helpful to confide in someone a bit older. Someone who has more years and experience then me but isn’t so much older that we have trouble relating. When I have questions, questions that a parent can’t answer, I can turn to them for help. I feel safer and more confident knowing that I’ve consulted someone who’s been in a similar situation and knows how I’m feeling.
It’s also comforting to know that I have someone to talk to who won’t think that my problems are juvenile or unimportant. Sometimes parents and even friends get so busy with their own lives that I become the perpetual listener, forever listening to someone else’s problems instead of trying to figure out my own. A lot of the time, having someone to listen to me is all that I need even if they can’t offer me any sage advice. Talking about my problems with someone who doesn’t find them trivial or insignificant makes them much easier to handle and helps ease my emotion stress.
In my opinion, holding feelings in is never the answer. From experience I know that when I have a serious problem, I go over it and over it so many times that by the end I can’t even see straight, let alone come up with a suitable answer. Discussing it with someone else can offer a new viewpoint and present a new outlook that I couldn’t see from the inside.
Life is difficult as a teen. Sometimes it is dramatic and challenging and hits us with choices that can greatly impact us. Having someone to talk to and someone to help you deal with both the good and bad can make all the difference.