Why Teens Don’t Talk to Their Parents


I feel privileged here at TEEN LINE to get an inner glimpse into the workings of teens, their struggles, challenges and triumphs. I also get insight into the reasons why teens often don’t talk to their parents when things are bothering them.

Reason #1 – They don’t want to overwhelm or worry you. Teens can be very intuitive, even when it seems like they aren’t paying attention, and know when you’re already at your limit. They don’t want to add anything else to your plate, so they keep things inside or act them out in harmful ways.

Reason #2 – They don’t want you to fix it. When your child was in elementary school, maybe it was okay for you to talk to their teacher or friend’s parent. Now that they’re in high school, no way! Not only do they think you can’t fix it, but they don’t want you fighting their battles.

Reason #3 – They don’t want you to get mad. Teens know what kind of behavior you won’t tolerate, and they don’t want to be the ones to tell you they did something you won’t like or agree with.

Reason #4 – You won’t understand. That is the universal disconnect between parents and teens. You may even remember feeling that way about your parents.

So what can you do about this?

More to come in later posts, but a few tidbits for now.

SELF-CARE – take care of yourself, and find adults in your life to share your stress with so that your teens don’t see it spilling over.

LISTEN – “Sometimes we need someone to simply be there. Not to fix or do anything in particular, but just to let us feel that we are cared for and supported” unknown.

BREATHE – don’t forget. A deep breath or two before you react is always good.

EMPATHY – try to bridge the understanding gap, put yourselves in their shoes, and see why they may have acted a certain way.

Leave a Comment ›


  1. Deborah Alexander says:

    Very insightful & helpful! Thanks!

    1. TEEN LINE says:

      Thanks for reading!

  2. Aditi says:


  3. Megal says:

    Great insight, thanks.

  4. Eric says:

    As a teen myself, I strongly disagree with what’s in this article. The reason teens don’t talk to the parents as much is that their parents lecture them on everything they say. So, fewer things said, fewer things lectured about. Sometimes I would say just 3 sentences about my day, and my mom would go blabbering away for 30 minutes on what I’m doing wrong. I reply with 5 words, and boom, another 30 minutes. If you want to hear more, you have to criticize less.

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