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Teenage Problems/Parents pressure me

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Question
Hi, I'm a boy and 15 years old. My parents are pressuring me so much. I know they have high expectations on me, but it stresses me out when they compare me to others and criticize how poorly I perform. I admit I'm not doing as well as I should be, and that I'm slacking off, but I'm having trouble getting back to being a A student since my parents seem to pressure me a lot. What should I do?

Answer
Bryan, I learned long ago to never compare one child to any other child. Every child is unique.  I learned, through my job, which was to compare the work that people do, not to what other people with the same job title and grade , but to a "STANDARD" now a standard is a book that describes the kind of work a person does by a whole system of classification. It shows , for example what a grade 5 worker would typically do and a grade 7 worker and a grade 9 worker. You get the idea. But parents are always comparing their children to each other or the neighbors kid. There are also "standards" in the field of measurement. For example, the length of a meter used to be the length of an Iridium bar kept at standard temperature and pressure at a lab that used to be in Paris. It was used to determine exactly the length of a meter stick. Now can anyone say for sure that the meter stick or "yardstick" is exactly 36 inches long or is it 35 and 7/8 of an inch long. In short if you compare a yardstick to a hundred other yardsticks, most will be 36 inches long but a few may be shorter or longer. This argument will not get you very far with your parents. Its just for your information. I suggest you talk calmly with your parents and let them know how much their criticism "hurts" you. You can tell them ,they are not very supportive of you by comparing you to someone else.  Its possible that you could be a student at a private school or at a religious affiliated school which means they must be paying a high tuition. If you have a cell phone or computer or video game addiction then I can understand their concern. These devices are not in the interests of a good student. They tend to be used for "socializing" more than for education or researching something. In all the schools I have ever attended, not a single one ever had a vending machine. If your parents needed to get a hold of you they called the office. I realize that's kind of old fashioned now. What would make it easier for you to be a more proficient student? For them to make sure you have a quiet place to study? I found that using earplugs helps me to "tune out" everything. Some people need a radio on. Since you are a teen you may need more than eight hours of sleep a night. If schools started at 900am instead of 800am there would be a lot fewer sleepy kids in school. If you skip breakfast, its a huge mistake. It should probably be your greatest meal. You need the energy and you don't need to be hungry. A hungry person is focusing on when and what they are going to eat, not school.  Its best to not get into a shouting match because you are not going to win. Don't try to settle all of their concerns in a single day. You did not say what they specifically criticize. Is it too many activities or too many friends, too much TV?  If you are not now a church goer, then you need to become one. If there is a youth fellowship at a church near you, consider joining it. You will find supporting friends there. If you do not have an extremely close relationship with God, then begin. If I have not helped you please write back.

Teenage Problems

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Jonathan

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I have dealt with many young people in a teaching environment as well as in teaching young people at tennis clinics. Since younger people have seen so little of the world their view of the world should not be shaped by the confines of what happens within their family unit. Its natural to be shy about developing relationships outside the home but young people need to know the other person is also probably just as shy as they are. If you havea problem then remember you are in good company. There are no new problems. Someone else has also had the same problem. If you need ideas on how to handle them or some choices to consider feel free to ask. I will answer questions about moral issues and how to handle such issues when they come up in your life. Continue reading about the issue of bullies which can be physical, emotional or sexual as well as bullies who use the internet to spread stories about you. You do not have to be teenager to ask a question here on how to handle this. If you are a pre-teen or tween you may also ask a question here.

Experience

I have taught children from 7th through 12th grade. It is all too common for young people to be shy or hesistate because they fear rejection from someone of the opposite sex. You do not have to be a teenager to ask a question here. If you are a pre-teen or "tween" as is commonly used now and are being "bullied" by someone and bullies can be other kids who hit you or as is becoming more common sexual bullying by name calling or spreading stories about you feel free to ask a question about what to do about it. There is also cyber bullying by people who may know you and there can be people who are pretending to be someone they are not who may insult you and try to destroy your self esteem. When you run into people who insult you its best to just block them and delete them or at the very least close down the messenger you are using. If anyone taunts you by calling you names or racial slurs or any slur that involves a persons sexual orientation you need to understand that the person doing that is trying to project their own questions about their own sexual orientation that they are questioning. This may sound complicated and it is. The people who are the most hateful in reality hate themselves and hate what they are desperately trying to convince themselves they are not (for example being gay or lesbian).

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