Conflict is fast becoming a normal part of family life and can often escalate during teenage years. About 1 in 5 teenagers say they are affected by these conflicts arising from many different reasons.
This article can help if you:
- Notice that fighting is increasing in your home
- Want to know the reasons why conflict arises
- Want to know ways to manage and minimise family conflict.
What is Family Conflict?
Conflict is the normal process through which people resolve differences. When people live together under the same roof, there are bound to be disagreements and arguments as personalities clash and everyone wants to be heard. This is one of the most common teenage problems with parents which may lead to ongoing parent-teenager conflict.
At CTCI we are concerned with minimising the impact of these conflicts on teenagers in other to strengthen family relationships.
Parent-teenager conflicts can increase during adolescence in particular, as it’s normal for teenagers to seek independence and separation from their parents. Other causes of family fighting can be differences in opinions, poor communication, changes in the family (such as a new baby or divorce), sibling rivalry or discipline issues. As teenagers move through their teenage years, they keep learning the life skills that they will need for adult life. Dealing with conflict effectively is likely to be something that they’re inexperienced in. Parents can also play an important role in helping them develop this skill.
How Family Conflict Can Influence a Teenager
Conflict in families can impact teenagers in many ways and long-term exposure to conflict may be psychologically damaging.
- Some teenagers may act out by showing increased aggression, defiance and behavioral problems.
- Some may experience depressive symptoms, such as feeling lonely or sad, or isolating themselves in their bedroom for long periods.
- Teenagers exposed to parental conflict may experience feelings of anxiety or feel pressure to divide their loyalty between parents.
When Conflict Becomes Aggression
Anger and conflict between parents and teenagers is a normal part of family life, and often very prevalent in teenagers who are going through big physical and emotional changes. However when conflict turns into aggression or violence, it may be time to get help.