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Teenagers and family time

(40 Posts)
Pollycazalet Mon 24-Feb-14 13:48:29

We've just got to the stage where DS (14) is disappearing to his room and refusing to do much with the rest of us. Which is all v normal but I was wondering what you have done to ensure you still have some time with your teen or even as a family.

Family films still work - sometimes - and the odd card game but that's about it.

Any ideas?

Martorana Mon 24-Feb-14 13:54:27

No meals in rooms- ever.

Sunday lunch round the table with proper napkins and candles and stuff- but movable to fit in with plans- could be Sunday dinner. Or occasionally Sunday breakfast (pancakes and bacon, not a roast!)

Family TV- it's the Voice, Outnumbered, Great British whatever activity.... for us.

Communal 15 minute bursts of housework (with the timer and music on]On reflection that might be just us blush

I'll come back with more......

BuzzLightbulb Mon 24-Feb-14 13:56:15

Mealtimes. And favourite tv programmes.

But that's about it.

Did try signalling well in advance we would be going out together for a walk or something but it became a struggle.

On the plus side they come out the other side much more amenable to going for coffee, lunch or dinner.

Stricnine Mon 24-Feb-14 14:12:35

I find the concept of teenager and family time in the same sentence quite funny ... we just about manage evening meal together but not every night!

If I'm really 'lucky' I get to help with DD's hair dying exploits, but only as a menial servant smile and she usually organises friends for this task..

Otherwise we rarely see her except when she needs something ! smile

Anonynonny Mon 24-Feb-14 14:13:52


And politics. We go on demos together. grin

BackforGood Mon 24-Feb-14 14:18:41

Agree with the first part of stricnine's post - putting 'teenagers' and 'family time' in the same sentence IS funny.

There was a thread about this a couple of weeks ago, the general consensus is, if you want to spend time with them, then you have to do things they want to - be that drive them to football training or learn how to play on the x-box, it's about you doing what they want, not the other way round.

Generally though, most teenagers go through spells where just being with a parent is too embarrassing for them grin - don't worry, they come out the other side.

Agree with mealtimes though - we ALWAYS eat our tea together as a family, always have.

Pollycazalet Mon 24-Feb-14 14:21:35

Walks are completely out Buzz. Just about manage to drag dd 11 along still but I can see those days also numbered!

Meals are good still and some family TV but even then the kids' tastes don't always converge ( never mind mine! )

V envious of the demos Nonny

Bowlersarm Mon 24-Feb-14 14:29:01

Always have a meal together on Saturday and Sunday. Well, whoever is here! Ds1 (18) lives away from home during the week but home at the weekends, and sometimes the other DSes are on sleepovers etc, but whoever is here sits round the table together.

No technology in bedrooms. So they are always amongst us in the main house.

We insist they come to family events/gatherings, although quite few and far between, but no longer make them come with us for other outings.

And we try and plan a family holiday which they will enjoy. They're great fun on holidays and this does give some concentrated family times, and happy memories.

RudyMentary Mon 24-Feb-14 14:30:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Nocomet Mon 24-Feb-14 14:32:10

QI, top gear, sciency TV with DD1, meals sometime, trips to the shops, cinema, out for a meal.

Beauty of living in the country, DDs can't walk, get a bus to a mates. They have to socialise with us, sometimes.

Mainly just not changing the rules much as they get older, still chatting, going places in the car, expecting them to come on days out etc.

Both have had laptops and gadgets since they were small so watching YouTube or texting your mates isn't new or novel.

DD1 is 16, she wouldn't think anything odd about accepting any offer of a family holiday or day out. Totally happy to accept any change of scenery.

DD2 puts her foot down about church/concerts and is allowed to stay home (I'm not mad on classical music either, but it comes with having DD1)

Bowlersarm Mon 24-Feb-14 14:32:15

Oh yes, and Saturday night film night still with popcorn etc, if DH and I are in. The rule with that which they seem happy with is that everyone watches for the first 30 mins and gives it a chance to get into it, but if they're really not enjoying it they can then disappear. I think they just humour me with this rule now though-I can't really insist they watch something they don't want to.

Claybury Mon 24-Feb-14 14:42:19

We aim to watch something together at 9pm most nights - just finished Breaking Bad. Sunday roast, that's about it.

AskBasil Mon 24-Feb-14 15:17:24

Scandinavian dramas in the 9PM Saturday slot seem to promote family time in my house.

teenagetantrums Mon 24-Feb-14 20:44:11

Mine will can normally be persuaded to come, so cheap meals out for lunch, trips to the cinema. Dont do much together at home with both teenagers, DD and I like some of the same TV so as she has no TV in her room atm we watch tv. Family meals dont happen during the week as everyone has different schedules and evening plans, but I try to have family lunches at the weekend (well breakfast for the teenagers)

wordfactory Tue 25-Feb-14 13:50:03

Walking the dogs each weekend.
Sunday Night Supper followed by TV (currently Top Gear).
Watching our footie team on telly.
DH goes cycling with them (I don't go!).

We also go out a lot together - restaurants, sports events, theatre, live music.

Weekends away together too.

yourlittlesecret Tue 25-Feb-14 14:31:04

BackforGood it's about you doing what they want, not the other way round Yes it is, and if you think about it that's no different from time with small children is it? We took them to the park or played Thomas the Tank engine because that was what made them happy aged 4. Why should it be different when they are 15?

Mostly it's either DH and DS or me and DS does that count?
TV time, DS1 and I bond over various American tv series, currently the box set of Greys Anatomy. DH watches countdown and university challenge with DS2.
DS2 goes with DH to watch football.
Food always gets them, we go out for meals now and then and I always do a Saturday night special meal.
Holidays and weekends away.
Evening meals together, always.
One thing about living in the sticks is there are a lot of car journeys, guaranteed to be the best time for conversations.
I also have a rule of no phones at the table, or watching tv.

Pollycazalet Tue 25-Feb-14 17:52:31

I hadn't thought if it like that secret but that's very true.

uiopw Tue 25-Feb-14 17:59:37

errhm...sorry to be the odd one out but DS15 is ALWAYS hanging around us and rarely going to his room He gets a book and reads in my office, while I work on the PC or does the same with his dad. Other than that he spends time on his PC, which is in our kitchen. Sometimes I WISHED he would go off and 'play' with someone such luck!

JohnnyUtah Tue 25-Feb-14 18:07:15

Because we have always limited screen time on non school day between 10.30 and 4 they no longer think to challenge this, which means we have an opportunity to go out to the shops, for lunch, or whatever. In the ast few days we have walked to a cafe for lunch, been to the shopping centre briefly, gone for haircuts and done a jigsaw. They will always go to nandos happily and we often watch tv together. I am getting fed up of teenage boy films but there you go, it's just a phase!

GemmaTeller Tue 25-Feb-14 18:24:05

Ours are grown up now but we always had meals together, DC were not allowed to take meals to their room to eat in solitude.

DSD did always like walking the dogs with me if we went via the farms and both of them were quite amenable to going to the cinema or shopping.

We also did saturday night movie and a takeaway.

I think it all goes round in a circle, they spend loads of time with you when they are young, then they find their way in life and want to go off with friends etc. Then when they get their own house they come back for sunday tea and saturday night movie and a takeaway.

Helpyourself Tue 25-Feb-14 18:29:36

Meals, if not at table at least together in front of the TV.
Shopping hmm and lifts.
They wouldn't be seen dead walking the dog with us, but yy to cinema/ plays and football.

Helpyourself Tue 25-Feb-14 18:31:38

We got Sky over my dead body and watch Modern Family, Dance Moms and even Kardashians.
Meh. At least we're in the same room and talking.

Ragwort Tue 25-Feb-14 18:33:33

Meals together (but in reality DS eats his meal in about 10 minutes and then wants to leave the table grin).

Occasional film or tv watching together - but almost impossible to find something we all enjoy.

DS is sporty so we go along to matches to watch yawn & he and DH go to other sporting events. We do sometimes go swimming as a family.

Visiting grandparents is still popular thank goodness.

We have found that sometimes a Quiz Night can be fun - ie: if a fund raiser.

Ragwort Tue 25-Feb-14 18:34:31

Help - how can you even be in the same room as Modern Family etc grin. Even if it is 'family time' I would draw the line at that.

Sparklingbrook Tue 25-Feb-14 18:35:23

Family time? What's that then?

I am ridiculously excited about taking DS1 (14) to the Orthodontist next week because we get to go out together. blush

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