You'll likely hear your child say things like, "But everyone else gets to do it! It's hard to recognize when your child is really ready for more freedom. You don't want to give kids more than they can handle, but at the same time, it's important to help them become as independent as possible. Whether your child wants a later curfew or she is insisting she's ready for a cellphone, a behavior contract can help you feel more at ease. A good contract should outline exactly what your child needs to do to earn a privilege or retain the ones she already has. It gives you a structure in which you can spell out exactly what your child needs to do stay safe and show you that she's responsible.
TEENS WITH PROBLEMS: How to Write a Home Rules Contract
Sharing personal information brings people closer together. Verified by Psychology Today. Surviving Your Child's Adolescence. When it comes to freedom and adolescence , this is how it's meant to be. A healthy adolescent is supposed to push for all the freedom to grow that he can get as soon as he can get it, and healthy parents are supposed to restrain that push within the interests of safety and responsibility. When adolescence finally winds down in the early to mid twenties, this conflict plays out because now the young person has at last claimed functional independence and parents have finally relinquished their directing, supervising, and supporting role.
The behavior contract is a simple positive-reinforcement intervention that is widely used by teachers to change student behavior. The behavior contract spells out in detail the expectations of student and teacher and sometimes parents in carrying out the intervention plan, making it a useful planning document. Also, because the student usually has input into the conditions that are established within the contract for earning rewards, the student is more likely to be motivated to abide by the terms of the behavior contract than if those terms had been imposed by someone else. NOTE: View a sample behavior contract as an attachment at the bottom of this page. The teacher decides which specific behaviors to select for the behavior contract.
Adolescents go through the transition of becoming more independent while still having parents dictate what they do. This conflict sometimes shows itself as behavior problems. Your teen may push you on issues, such as meeting curfew or showing proper respect. A behavior contract with your teen gets her actively involved in changing her behavior and meeting your expectations. Your existing house rules or general behavior expectations for your teen work well as the foundation of the behavior contract.