As the children grow older and end up with a social life better than yours, it can be hard to keep track of where everyone is heading and what they are all up to. As you hit the teenage years it can seem like you are never in the same place at the same time.
Being together is important, especially so you can keep connected to your children. Teenagers tend to keep things bottled up inside so you need to keep your eye on any changes that might hint to an issue. Perhaps they are quieter than normal, this could be because they are finding work too hard at school or being bullied by a group of people, either online or in the real world. Your role as a parent is to know everything without the children realizing it. You cannot do that if you aren’t spending good quality time together.
The problem is, what teenager actively wants to hang out with their parent? You probably couldn’t wait to ditch yours in favor of your mates, right? This is where you need to get smart.
Mealtimes are a pretty sure way of pulling everyone together. So try to fit either breakfast time or dinnertime into everyone’s routine. If it is hard to do this during the week, make sure you have shared mealtimes on the weekend. If you live with your partner then they need to make the effort too. Family dinner used to be regular in all households, however with working hours now so changing it can be difficult to all eat at a reasonable time. Your children will probably be hungry when they get back from school so try to feed them up with some healthy snacks. No matter how good or bad you are at cooking, children will always have fond affection for the way their mum cooks things. So don’t feel worried if you aren’t a natural chef. Just work on some simple recipes and sit together. No TV, no mobile phones. Just all of you chatting at the table.
Try not to use this time to focus on one child and also try not to spend your whole meal time discussing a negative issue. It may seem like a good opportunity to nag the kids about untidy rooms, however you want everyone to have a good relationship with this event so keep it positive.
An even better way to bring the family together is by doing regular activities. You can use The Ticket Merchant to source great events across all genres. Don’t think about what you enjoy, focus on the children. You could let them take it in turns to choose what you go to see or do, then through in a mum and dad wild card three times a year. Where you do something completely different.
Don’t underestimate the importance of bringing the family together. A tight family that spends time together, is a stronger unit. Your children will feel more confident sharing their problems with you and that could be vital in building them a strong, bright future.