If you're like most caring parents, you want to know what's on your teen's mind. Adolescents can be just as worried as adults sometimes, and they need guidance to minimise their anxiety. By familiarising yourself with some of the most common teen worries, you'll be on your way to a better understanding of your children, as well as how to help them cope.
Teens worry about school --- whether they're making the grade, how to study for the next test, and how they can avoid being overwhelmed with coursework. If their parents punish or bribe them for bad or good grades, respectively, this can also be a factor in their worries.
Teens have many concerns about how they measure up to their peers in terms of looks, academics and popularity. Peer pressure to "keep up with the competition" can be fierce.
A teen's group of friends often makes up her entire world, and when one member of the group is having a problem, it can affect the mood of other members. Your teenage daughter may be concerned about a break-up that her best friend had, for instance.
Love is an especially big concern of this age group. It may be trying to get dates, having problems in a relationship or just plain loneliness. Although teenage girls are often portrayed as lovestruck, romantic issues can trouble boys as well.
Whether parents like it or not, teenager have thoughts about sex, including worries. They may be concerned about being pressured for sex, having too much or too little, or what their peers are doing. They may also have anxiety about sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy.
If your teen has a part-time job, he may be worried about job performance, losing the job, problems at work or how to fit it in with classes and homework.
Teens worry about drug and alcohol problems, whether the user is themselves or someone they love.
Family problems, such as separation, divorce, abuse and addiction are often on the forefront of a teen's mind.
Many teens think a great deal about whether they will get into university or get into the university of their choice. Some are conflicted because they do not want to attend university but are doing so at the behest of their parents.
For the teen who is unsure of what she wants to do in life, thoughts of the future can be worrisome as well.