on April 27, 2013in Kids, Teenagers, Adolescence, Adulthood, & Parenting, Podcast: Be Happy, Now! Practical Spirituality with Dr. Mosestags: adolescent, family, influence, parenting, parents, rebellion, rebellious, teen, teenager, tvwith No Comments
Be Happy, Now! Practical Spirituality with Dr. Moses.
In this video I speak to our teens and parents about the meaning of turning 14 and the vital steps we all need to take to avoid the unnecessary rebellion that accompanies adolescence.
Blessings and Peace! Enjoy!
Article – Coming of Age for Teenagers and Parents
Be happy now, practical spirituality with Dr. Moses. Thank you so much for tuning in, I’m Dr. Moses and this is an extended podcast that I put together. I did this one on the fly, I really put a lot of information talking about teenagers and parents and what happens when we become a teenager and what to remember. It is almost 30 minutes, it’s an extended podcast and excuse the quality of the recording also because it was a spontaneous recording. Be sure and visit my website Dr. Moses.com that’s D O C T O R M O S E S.com and sign up for my email newsletter for free guided meditations and updates. thank you so much for tuning in and here we go
Hello good morning, good day to you, how are you? I’m Dr. Moses and today we’re going to be talking about something that’s so important as parents, as parents of teenagers especially and for teenagers. So please join me on this fun journey for today’s podcast. If you have questions please send your questions through email or post them on Facebook or Twitter, I’d love to talk about it in future podcasts.
Today’s subject is about what happens at around 14 years old for boys and girls and what we have to do as parents in dealing with that change. You know, in the Jewish tradition, we have a Bar Mitzvah and the Bar Mitzvah is the significance, it’s a coming-of-age and so I would like to encourage us to think about it on this level, in a sense. Now, it’s important to note that a 13 or 14 years old the young boy or girl is not moving from childhood to adulthood, okay. Fully mature adulthood is more like somewhere between 19 and 21 years of age. But at around 14 years old, so we can think of the growth of childhood in stages; the first stage of life is from 0 to7, second stage is 7 to 14 and the third stage of life is 14 to 21.
Dealing appropriately with our teenagers in going through this stage the right way, is so important
The main reason, the biggest importance, is so that we can avoid the rebellion of adolescence. This is what we want to avoid, this is what we want to get away from. The rebellion of adolescence causes a slew of problems, both physical problems obviously, you know our teenagers are having sex, they’re contracting diseases, they are getting pregnant, they are smoking cigarettes, you know, at a very young age. This is all because of the rebellion of adolescence, which is totally unnecessary, it is just completely unnecessary and the way to avoid it is to approach the teenagers the right way and of course to have a stable foundation, which is the right way, and how we have done for our children from zero to 14 years of age.
At about 14 years old, I want to encourage you and all society to create some kind of celebration.
It could be official or an unofficial celebration of the child becoming a young man, a young adult, a young woman. The child is going now, to a new age of life, and this age of life is very significant. It is very important that both the parents and the teenager recognized that something is happening, something is different. In the Bar Mitzvah they say that the child is no longer responsible, I’m sorry, that the parent is no longer responsible for the child’s actions. Now after the Bar Mitzvah which is at 13 years old, the child is now becoming a young adult, a young man or young woman and they are now responsible for their own actions. They are able to participate in adult life, they are able to serve in the synagogue or in the church, and so they take a higher responsibility, they have more participation in the adult culture and they are now responsible for themselves.
Now, they’re obviously not fully responsible for themselves,. there is still dependence on the parents to support. We must support our teens, we must give them love, we must give them honest open communication. We must support them physically, we must supply food obviously, you know, things like that. But from a growing up type of perspective, from their thoughts and actions, their decisions, it’s time for the teenager to now really assume responsibility for themselves.
So my teenagers, okay… it’s time to assume responsibility for yourselves!
The biggest lesson that you can learn and to understand is that independence, you know autonomy, or being your own man, being your own woman, does not mean rebellion. Rebellion is rebellion. That’s all it is, it’s self-destructive, it’s others destructive, it’s let me destroy my own body by smoking cigarettes. Let me manipulate others into liking me and talk about people and try to be popular, try to be cool and do all these things. This is all drama, it’s all negativity, and it’s is all meaningless. It doesn’t make you more of a man or more of a woman to abuse your body or to abuse other people.
What makes you more of a man or more of a woman is to take responsibility for your body, to take responsibility for your actions.
To take responsibility for your life, for your life decisions, is to decide to be nice, to decide to not talk about other people. That’s maturity, that is adulthood, to decide that I need to take some time to consider my work. I want to follow someone around in this job area, this way can consider if I want to be in a certain profession. Maybe I can spend time with an adult who is in that profession and see if I like that, this way I could move forward. Look at colleges you if you want to go to school, if you want to further your education. Maybe traveling and visiting the school campuses, dialoguing with people that are mature, that you admire. See what it is that you admire about them and let them speak life into you and let them connect with you. Be honest and open with them.
Developing honesty in relationship instead of manipulating, for the guys a lot of times it’s all about manipulating the girl to have sex with you, no matter what happens, it’s all about having the sex and getting that orgasm and getting feeling. And then it just goes away and everything becomes very negative for the girl, obviously. And now lot now a lot of the young women in our society are also just as manipulating and just as controlling and just as negative. It used to be more of the guys were doing that, so it is a sad situation. So the most important point for my teenagers to understand is that…
Independence is not rebellion. Independence means responsibility.
Rebellion is just rebellion, is just destruction, self-destructive and others destruction, hurting myself and hurting others. Independence means responsibility. If you can take responsibility for yourself now you are acting like an independent adult and you are moving towards becoming an adult that is ready to be in society, to serve society, to serve and bless others, and to serve and bless yourself, to make a lasting contribution to society and to be happy.
Now, it’s really important as adults, now I am speaking to parents again, is to treat our teenagers as, young men and women not as adults. We’re not leaving them in a sense, were not kicking them out of the house, we’re not leaving them to their own whims and desires. Obviously that would not be good, our teams need guidance, they need help, they need talking. But the difference is that now that were dealing with a teenager and by recognizing this change, and again approximately 14 years of age, recognizing that something has changed in this young man, this young woman is becoming a young adult and now they need to be responsible for themselves.
We need to give them more autonomy, we need to give them that independence.
We can’t control their decisions and trying to guide everything that they do, in a sense, we need to let them make those decisions. We need to help them to develop their own will, their own ability to make decision. Guidance is wonderful but if you try to shove something down their throat, if you try to force them to do something a certain way, they are going to rebel. Some children may not, most of the time it makes a sense of rebellion inside of the child. How much they express it or not is different with every child or every teen.
So our responsibility is to give them a certain amount of independence, a little at a time, give them more and more independence by giving them responsibility and allowing them to make those decisions. By giving them, we can talk, we can give them the guidance, we can ask questions, ask good questions, help them to unfold, find out what’s in their hearts, be good listeners and develop that relationship. It is almost, almost like a friendship type of relationship, almost, but we’re still the parent, we still need to provide that loving guidance to them but by allowing them to make those decisions on their own, by giving them a little bit of freedom, little by little, depending on how responsible they responding, so it is like a push pull.
As they become more responsible, as we give them more challenges to do on their own, as we challenge them and allow them to make more and more decisions, on their own, they become more and more responsible for themselves, for their emotions, for their thoughts, for their words, for their actions, in every way, in all aspects of life. And, we can be there to support that, and to love them to give them more love and more guidance and more and more autonomy or independence or freedom. Again, freedom does not mean let’s go out and go nuts and abuse ourselves, that’s just simply rebellion and self-abuse, you know. It has nothing to do with true independence and responsibility and coming into adulthood.
Some of us as adults are still magnifying the adolescent stage, I would say most or at least half of adults right now are still in the world of adolescence in a sense; sexually promiscuous, unable to stay in a marriage, unable to be responsible for our feelings or emotions or thoughts or actions, always blaming others, talking about other people, constantly constantly collapsed and unable to love, unable to open our hearts and reach out to others, unable to serve.. always just self collapsed.
And so as adults, we need to recognize our own stage in our development
We need to recognize that we are acting like teenagers, we’re acting rebellious. If we’re unable to connect with our teenager because we’re still in a power struggle where we want to control them and we want them to do what we wanted to do, type of thing. So, it is so important for us to recognize that in ourselves and to confess it. We must confess ourselves to our teenagers. The foundation of the relationship between a parent and a teenager is going to be trust and confession. If I am unable to confess my feelings to my teenager that I got angry over some certain situation and I’m sorry that I raised my voice at you, that you are a young adult and I love you and I want the best for you.
I would recommend you know this, or here is more information about that, I hope you make a good decision. If we’re unable to be honest and open and open our hearts our teenagers, how are they supposed to be honest with us? How are they going to be able to open up and confess their emotions to us, to confess their sexuality to us, to confess their desires and the desires of the heart to us? They’re not. They’re going to hold it inside and keep it a secret and it’s going to create a secret life. And so our teenagers live a secret life, they have a life that’s totally separate from their parents, completely independent, completely outside the parent-child relationship. And so what’s happening is the blind are leading the blind, teenagers are being raised by each other and by the things that they tell each other and by the TV.
They are not getting the guidance and the love that they need from their parents and other adult peers that have the same ideals, and the same standards of living that we do as the parents.
The key, again the key, to preventing this adolescent behavior, the rebellion and the secret life, it’s so important. We must prevent our teenagers from having a secret life, not by force, not by force, but through trust, through trust, through love, and through nonjudgment. When the teenager comes to me and when I asked why teenager, are you having sex, are you masturbating, how often do you masturbate? How many of us are comfortable enough to ask our teenagers those questions? If you are not comfortable enough with yourself, with your spouse and with your own sexuality and with your teenager, to be able to ask that question…How often do you masturbate? Do you do it in the shower?
This is so important to have this open relationship about sexuality especially, because the sexual is the hardest thing to talk about. It is the most covered up, it is the most smothered, but the sexuality which is mostly developed, again, the sexual emotional life is going to be developed in the second stage of life from 7 to 14. And that’s when this dialogue has to start, very gently and with love, non-graphically of course.
As parents we have to be able to ask the hard questions and ask them constantly.
But the teenager will not answer, they will not be forthright and forthcoming, they will not open the heart make eye contact and connect with us unless we are confessed, unless we are willing to open our hearts and be honest and be open with our teens, about our own lives. Obviously you don’t need to share with your teen your sexual life with your spouse, that doesn’t make sense. But be able to apologize and when the teen does say I am having sex, to not blow our tops and not get angry and not go crazy and not go nuts because all of that is showing the teenager that they can trust us, in the sense.
The relationship with your teenager is based on trust, it’s based on trust, it’s based on your ability to treat your teen with respect and love, almost like an adult, almost. Now our teenagers are not adults and they cannot be treated like adults. Our teenagers are teenagers, they’re in their third stage of life, they love the guidance and they need us to be honest with them about our feelings and emotions. They need us to be willing to apologize, to be willing to say how we feel, not burdening them with our problems, but confessed about the relationship. I feel that you are drifting somewhat, what’s going on, you can talk to me, I love you, I won’t judge you, I’m here for you. And, that needs to be developed early on, if you have a 16-year-old thats rebellious and you come to them and you tell them that, you know, good luck. It needs to be developed early on and if you do have children or teenagers that are rebellious at this stage and are already enmeshed in the stage of adolescence and rebellion, then it’s going to be up to you to fix yourself first, in a sense, to go deep inside you ask yourself how have you held this person down so that they have felt the need to rebel.
How have you shown distrust and anger so that your son or daughter has felt the need to have a secret life?
We need to go inside of ourselves first, we need to cleanse ourselves, we need to live in the now, we need to breathe and we need to practice devotion to God in our hearts. Constantly, constantly, and cleanse ourselves so that we can bring ourselves to this relationship with a clean heart, a clean mind, with true love and not a relationship of control.
When a child reaches about 14 years of age this is the beginning.. I talked about having a celebration and I do encourage this for both the parent and the child. You see the child knows wow, now I’m becoming a teenager, I need to take responsibility for my own actions, for my own thoughts, and my parents are going to give me more responsibility and more independence, in the home, in life, in every type of situation at school and work and making decisions. Now as parents, it’s so important to stop treating our teenager as a child, to let go of childish things, to allow our teenager to grow and blossom and to flourish in their life, to encourage them to follow their hearts and things that are in their hearts. Not what we want them to do but what they want to do, what they want to develop. There are many parent-child relationships right now, you may have it with your parent or you may see it with your parent and your grandparents or aunt uncles, wherever, it’s everywhere.
You have adult men and women, that in the eyes of their parents, they are still children.
They are still 0 to 14, they are still babies to them in a sense, and once a child is 14 years old we need to let go because all it does is bind the child, it holds them down, it shuts down their hearts. In the earlier stages of life from 0 to 14 especially from 0 to 7, we have an Oedipal Complex, especially with the parent of the opposite sex. This is something I’ll talk about in a different podcast, but the point I’m trying to say is that as a young child, we have a complicated dependent relationship on the parents and especially the parent of the opposite sex and it’s important for them to resolve that relationship, to dissolve it and to let it go, to reach a time of independence and autonomy. A time of independence from that parent-child relationship that needs to be celebrated at 14 years old, this way it doesn’t drag on through the teenage years and even into adulthood. That’s the saddest part, it’s the worst part, when you have an adult who still has a parent-child type of relationship with their son or daughter.
Now, so at 14 years old we want to celebrate the teenager as a young adult, as a young man or woman. What I’d like to say, what I’d like to bring out here is an important point okay? Once we reach that 14-year-old stage and we have a celebration, it can be a party or a quinceanera, a Bar Mitzvah or it could be something in the home. It could be something gentle, you know, buy some cake, light candle, buy some incense, say some prayers. Whatever it is, sit down and talk at the dinner table about it, just have a conversation, but do something that can be the mark for the parents and the child, the child who is now a teenager can now say, I’m responsible for myself and for my actions. My parents are not going to treat me like a child anymore and the parents can say to themselves, I’m not going to parent this child, I’m not going to force them into things. I’m going to talk to them, I’m going to give them more independence, give them more love, give them more trust and give them more responsibility for their own actions.
And so, it is both ways, it is absolutely a two-way street.
It is not for the child to say, he needs to do that or I don’t need him or for the adult to say, my son well if he was more responsible for himself I would ….NO! This is a two-way street and we need to focus on ourselves what we’re doing to cause more negativity in the relationship. Now, when the child has reached this age and now they’re a teenager, 13 or 14 years old, since were not parenting them as much, it’s become more of a relationship, an encouragement, a dialogue of openness and guidance per se, we also want to allow other adults in the community…This is very important. We are releasing, in a sense, that child from the parent-child relationship into the community, into the adult community, so that other adults who have similar ideals, who have similar high standards of living, the high standards of living of love and compassion, honesty and openness that you have and that you desire to have with your child.
You want to release the teenager into the adult community so that he or she can gain guidance and love from other adults that are peers, that they can have a trusting open honest relationship and receive more guidance, from other adults who have similar ideals. Now you’re going to have a cousin or uncle or brother or sister that does not have high ideals, that does not have a high standard of living. That may be a drug addict and an addict that is rebellious in many ways and still portraying the adolescent mentality. That’s not the person we want our teenager to hang out with to receive advice from and guidance from, obviously.
You want to look for those people who you trust and you love, whom you know have a similar thinking as you, the highest level of thinking possible. A lot of times you’ll find these types of people at church or a Bible study or your place of worship.
My teenagers, I tell you, come to me anytime. I am always available.
I’m here, call me on the phone, message me, e-mail me, on Facebook, on Twitter, through my website. Whatever it is, I am here for you. I will give you my time. I am literally here for you. Please, parents, it’s your job to find the other mentors in your society, the people that can speak life into your teenagers, that can give them that guidance and that love and that openness and teach them the truth about adulthood and the truth about taking responsibility for our own emotions, for our bodies, for our thoughts, and to help guide them into a loving positive holistic life that is free of adolescent rebellion, free of just smothering my body with everything I can find to make myself feel better because I’m depressed and I’ve lost my relationship with my parents and I have nothing to live for… type of thing.
We have these horrific things that are having our society from shootings to all kinds of things I’d rather, there’s no point talking about them. Let’s do it differently, let’s give our teenagers a different way, let’s give them the responsibility, encourage them and love them and bring them into society and bring them into the adult culture of people whom we love and people we admire people we think highly of.
Let those teenagers have real relationships, real mentor, big brother type of relationships with these adults.
Speak life into them, to be open, to be honest to confess openly our feelings and our struggles in life and how we can live a higher way, of better way, a way of transcendence, of forgetting the ego, of living in love, living following the heart, always breathing the presence of God, every moment. Parents, our teenagers need us! They need us to treat them with respect, with love, with honesty. Teens, remember, independence does not mean rebellion, rebellion is destruction, its depression, its always looking for something to be happy. If you want to be happy, be happy now. Take responsibility for yourself, for your thoughts, for your heart, for your actions and begin to live a different way. Begin to lift up your life, even with the flood of hormones and the flood of changes and this peer pressure and the images that we see on TV, the Internet. Live it! Now is the time to take responsibility and to move yourself up to a higher way, to develop yourself in a higher way, do not give in to what society expects you to do as a rebellious adolescent teenager. It is so unnecessary and its suffering, its pure suffering for you and suffering for everybody. There is no need for it, choose to live a different way.
I send my heart out to you. I send you blessings and peace. To my parents and my teens, I’m here and unavailable always. Please send me your questions online and visit my website: DOCTORMOSES.COM
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