As parents, it is one thing to be responsible for setting rules for your kids, like family time, TV time, and curfews. Yes, curfews are probably one of the most difficult to impose, especially on teens that have just begun learning the perks of being young – going to parties, dating, sleepovers, and the like. It is also another thing to be stern on enforcing these curfews and their corresponding penalties when your kid violates them.
Truly, parents set a curfew because they love their children very much and they want to protect them from the late night perils as well as the effects of negative peer pressure. Such negative peer pressure can push the young teen to vices such as alcohol or substance abuse and eventually need help for an addiction. But, when they break curfew s, there may be second thoughts as to whether you should allow your kid to learn through experiencing the effects of violating the rules or just simply let it pass because you can’t stand looking at your kid sulking in the corner and getting mad at you for grounding them.
What To Do
The first thing a parent should do is to decide on implementing the curfew. Having to tell your kid that he should ‘suffer the consequences’ is quite difficult, so you must first be firm in your stand to enforce the rules that you set upon for him or her. Consistency is the key. When you say they should be home by 10, it doesn’t mean it’s okay to be home one time at 11, and then get mad the next time for arriving at 10:30. You may have had an agreement with your kid about arriving home a little late on special occasions, but for ordinary cases, you should always keep the curfew as it is – all the time.
Once you have made your decision, you are now ready to implement these rules and the corresponding penalties. And when your kid breaks it the first time, do the serious talk. Let him understand the importance of following the rules, assuring him that his safety is the prime reason for setting it. Additionally, remind him that curfews are a government as well as a family law that should be taken into full consideration.
What if your kid breaks his curfew the second time or the third time? One proven method that forces your kid to not break his curfew again is by decreasing his curfew time. If he came home at 11:30 PM when he was supposed to be in by 11, then impose a 10:30 curfew the next weekend. Then he will realize that his freedom hours really depend on punctuality and his ability to follow rules.
However, when your kid has been consistently missing his curfew four or five times in a month, you should think about giving him a tougher penalty, such as grounding. Most parents loathe the thought of their teenagers hating them for not allowing them to spend the weekend over at their friend’s house, but doing so would probably wake up their senses and make them realize that you’re serious in implementing the curfew, just as they are about their freedom. Restricting them from using their gadgets is also one motivation for them to come home on time.
Ultimately, curfews are among the most effective laws that have helped many parents in trying to keep their teenagers away from the streets in the wee hours of the morning and night. Parents, on the other hand, should not forget to appreciate their teens when they show good behavior. Let them earn an hour more on one weekend for being consistent. There are other ways to keep the harmony while enforcing curfews to your teens. If you need more help in guiding them about curfews, seeking professional advice online would also be useful and convenient.