How to Help Your Teenage Girl Through Difficult Times 

by | Mar 19, 2024 | Parenting, Teenagers | 0 comments

When your teenage girl is experiencing a challenge, do you respond in a way that encourages her to lean in and learn from the experience?


Whether your daughter is fraught with worry, filled with self-doubt, drowning in disappointment, or ablaze with anger, your response plays an important role in how she processes challenging experiences. 


When faced with an emotional teenage girl, many parents wonder, should I rescue her from pain or step back and allow her to figure things out on her own? 


It is a fine balance. 


During times of struggle, it’s hard for teen girls to find the light at the end of the tunnel.  I’ve seen this many times in my teen coaching sessions. In a safe and comfortable environment, my clients open up about their struggles and challenges.  It’s clear they have a tendency to fixate on their hardship, rather than consider solutions or helpful actions.  As a life coach, I help my clients see beyond their current struggles and regain a sense of hope and control, and as a parent, you can too.


You know she has resilience, strength, and courage so it’s important that you help her recognize these qualities.  Point out her strengths. Illuminate what your daughter is unable to see for herself.  Begin by acknowledging her challenge, validating how she is feeling, and then share the truth: She is capable, competent, strong, and wise.  The challenge is temporary. Things will change.  


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It sounds something like this,  “I can see you’re really struggling and this feels totally overwhelming, perhaps like it will never end.  I also know you can get through hard times and that challenges don’t last forever.  I know you are brave and wise. You can get through this. I am here for you when/if you need me.”  


This simple affirmation lets your teenage girl know you support her and encourages her to tap into her strengths. 


Once you affirm your daughter’s experience, it can be tempting to ask about the details of her challenge.  Some teens will be forthcoming, others will not.  Either way, do your best to respect her space and allow her to keep the details private.  Instead of asking a lot of questions, you might say something like:  “Let me know if you would like to talk more and help me understand what’s going on. I’m always ready to listen.” 


This request sends the message that it is safe for her to take her time before opening up to you and when she is ready, you will be willing to understand.  


Once your daughter’s emotions have calmed and the challenge has passed, help her learn from the experience.  You may point out and praise how she handled the difficult situation.  One of my favorite questions to ask my teen and young adult clients is: What do you now know that you didn’t know before?  This helps them tap into the wisdom they’ve gained and encourages them to recognize the gifts of a difficult experience.  


If your daughter continues to resist opening up to you, consider providing her with outside support, like a life coach or mentor.  Someone who can help her understand that all challenges are opportunities for growth.  


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