On Your Radar podcast: Setting boundaries and promoting resiliency for teens refusing to engage

Even in the best of times, teenagers can be notoriously difficult to engage with. And over the past year and a half, they’ve experienced even more isolation and autonomy, with copious time to indulge in their own routines, structures, and in some cases, substances.

As they transition back into the classroom after a year of remote or hybrid learning, you might notice their grades slipping or their friends changing or disappearing. So how do parents get a teen potentially in trouble to engage in positive ways?

The first step is a conversation. While that may sound simple, it’s often anything but easy. But even if the door shuts in your face, it’s important to ask questions, establish that you recognize a potential issue, and let them know you’re there for them and you love them. Another important step is to involve the teen in setting boundaries that are measurable and achievable, like setting aside an hour of family time or establishing a realistic but consistent bedtime.

With progress over time, you may see signs of resiliency in the teen—overcoming challenges, working through anxiety, and an increasing self-awareness that they can not only accomplish difficult goals, but also learn emotional skills they can transfer to the next challenge.

But if boundary setting isn’t working after a while, other steps may be necessary, including intervention. The experts at Rosecrance can provide an assessment and determine what next steps would be most appropriate to reach the teen and get them on the path to engagement and recovery.

If a teen you care about is experiencing any mental health or substance use issues and is refusing to engage, check out the conclusion of series two of the Rosecrance podcast “On Your Radar,” which covers setting boundaries and promoting resiliency in those teens.

Download “On Your Radar: Setting Boundaries and Promoting Resiliency for Teens Refusing to Engage” series 2 episode 3, HERE.