Do you have a teenager dealing with breakup? Are you lost for words of advice and guidance to help them deal with it in a healthy manner? If yes! Then consider reading this post.
Breakup sounds sad to me, either in teenage or adulthood. Getting over someone doesn’t include any kind of formula or a trick that’s going to make you forget about the past. Teens often have very brief but passionate feelings, and for that reason, they need to be reassured that this is normal. Watching your teenage child go through heartbreak is one of the hardest issues for all parents; you have to let them know that; the biggest lesson is that life is full of relationships which will come and go. Some relationships they will be heavily invested in. Other relationships, the other person might be heavily invested in them. However, they must understand that all relationships are a great gift which changes us, even the one which end in pain.
Teen heartbreak hurts more, most especially because of their age. It makes them feel unrequited love which is unhealthy for them. In my experience most adults tend to ignore or try to downplay such events as they are not that big of a deal. For a teen, it is the end of the world as it is the biggest/worst thing they have gone through.
When a teen experiences heartbreak, as an adult, it’s not a time to apportion blames, do not even say the other party (girl/boy) is wrong too as he/she is also teenager and does not know what to decide or maybe he/she is confused too. Keep the “I told you so” phrase and comfort them. Let them know breakups hurt do not try to paint a picture perfect for them, let them know it hurts and breakups are difficult emotionally and also they are inevitable. But with time, the pain fades. The teenage years are when people learn about relationships, what works and what doesn’t.
Benefit of a Teen Heartbreak
Everything that has a disadvantage also has an advantage and teens heartbreak is not an exemption. Below are some advantages of a teens heartbreak
- It’ll give them a prescient wisdom and open their eyes to the fact that there is no “one” that we romantically indulge in through fiction and media.
- It will help them learn empathy when they sees others going through heartbreak,
- They will learn not to be obsessed or put another person on such a high pedestal that losing him/her feels like the end of the world.
- They will learn to appreciate family and cherish good memories.
A teen experiencing heartbreak will want to believe that it’s the end of the road but as an adult, you let them see the bright side of life, let them know It’s completely possible to continue and they will enjoy life again. Show them they are worthy of love, make them see how interesting, unique and amazing person they are. Tell them not to allow anybody tell them, make them think or feel otherwise. You can offer to be there for him/her and also talk to them in a non-judgmental way.
Things You Should Never Do
- Don’t dismiss their feelings or tell them things aren’t that bad just because they’re young. Pain is pain at any age.
- Do not tell them you knew all along that the relationship was going to end this way.
- Be available to speak on their terms and let them express emotions; however petty you might think it is, teenage heart break hurts the most.
- Try not to shame your teenager if they are having difficulties moving past it. Not everyone responds to these events in the same way.
- Avoid bringing up the heartbreak in conversation so as to avoid triggering negative feelings. Let them move on, and if they want to talk about it, just be available.
- Don’t discount the hurt he/she is going through.
Remember you have to make them trust you to confide in you, they are teens and they listen more to their peers out there. Encourage them to do the leaving, If for ANY REASON they no longer want to be in a relationship with the other person, they can end it. In order to be able to give them this advice, you have to make them your friend.
HOW PARENT/GUARDIAN CAN HELP.
Parents and guardians have a role to play in helping teenagers who are finding it difficult dealing with heartbreak. Below are a few things to do. Let them know;
- It is TEMPORARY even though it feels like their heart will hurt forever and they will never get over the pain.
- Try taking them out to do whatever activists and interests they have to boost their spirit. This will help to get their mind off the heartbreak.
- Tell them even though it hurts now, they will indeed love again. They will love someone more, find someone who is a better fit for them, and enjoy their company even more than the person they just broke up with.
- Let them understand, other people’s pain is not their fault or responsibility. Getting hurt is a part of life and a part of relationships. If you break up with someone and they are hurt, that is not something you should feel bad about!!
- Be honest, even when it doesn’t seem like the nicest thing to say to someone. If you’re not honest with your partners about how their behavior affects you and how you feel, you are keeping them from learning how to be successful in their future relationships.
- Encourage them to spend more time with their friends and family whom you might have ignored in the past!
- Be there, listen and offer advice when it is sought.
- Encourage them to move on and put themselves out there. We can’t live in the past, show them need to continue and to move forward.
- Help them learn to appreciate all relationships and that the part they play in them is just as valuable as the other person.
- Encourage them to cut off contacts from all social media (if required block the person) and most importantly accept that it is over and start loving yourself.
- Encourage them to talk about their friend’s relationships, and how long they usually last.
One of the best advice you can ever offer to them is that;
People you date or get into relationships will come and go, but your true friends and family will always be there.
It is really comforting and even though majority of them do not have the support systems to get through the hardship. It’ll be good for you to comfort them, encourage them to do things that will keep their mind off it. i know getting their mind off it is difficult but it will happen, it just a gradual process.
When a teen remains down for a long time look for signs of clinical depression. With a teen in a breakup, it may be a tough call. But, teens usually bounce back after some time. If this doesn’t happen, the breakup may have been the last straw, and sent the teen into a bona fide depression. If so, it is important to treat it. Sure, these things often self-heal eventually, but then they usually leave a future vulnerability behind, that may manifest when meeting stress in the future. Better to get it properly treated straight away.
If you are going to risk going out with boys, then expect that breakups will occur. It’s all part of the game of preparing to have a mate and become a responsible adult.
Written by: JULIANA JONATHAN
Image source: Getty Images.