Why you should stay home with your teens

Apr 25, 2014, 6:50 AM | Updated: May 7, 2014, 6:38 pm

Nationally, the number of stay-at-home moms is on the rise. An article in the Deseret News National Edition details how after decades of mothers entering the workforce, the number of moms opting to stay home is still the minority, but has been steadily increasing since 2000.

The stay at home phenomenon isn't limited to mothers of young children. Older children can still benefit from having a stay-at-home parent. Here are 5 reasons to stay home with your teenagers.

1. Teens need close supervision. Studies show unsupervised teens are more likely to experiment with drugs, alcohol and sex. You don't have to be looking over their shoulder all the time, but knowing you're close by can give teens the motivation and courage to resist peer pressure.

2. Your teens will have more opportunities. Whether it be sports teams, dance, music lessons or academic competitions, when you stay at home, it gives your children more opportunities. You can get them where they need to be and be there to cheer them on.

3. There is still a lot to teach your teen. Your child is now ready for the big conversations. Teens have a lot of questions about the challenges they face, those their friends face, troubling things going on the world, what the future holds and life in general. You can be there to answer those questions.

Your teens will also be going out on their own soon. While they may have been helping with chores over the years, now is the time to teach them what they really need to know to live on their own. Teach them to cook, do their own laundry, set and keep their own appointments and to pay bills and balance their bank account.

4. This is a critical time in your child's life. This is a time when a teen is finding his own voice and planning his own future. Teens make life-altering decisions. However, they don't always see that the consequences to their actions can have long lasting effects. Be there to help guide your teen through the tricky spots.

5. Being a teen is hard. Teens work hard at school. They need to keep up grades, deal with the different personalities of teachers and administrators and navigate the social scene — not to mention extracurriculars. It's nice to have someone to come home to. Staying home lets you be there to support your teen through the good stuff and the bad.

3. It's never too late to have an influence. Mothers leaving the workforce to stay home with older children is a growing trend. Even if you've worked outside the home up to this point, any time spent with your child is only going to strengthen them and strengthen your family. Though it may be tough at first, your children will grow to appreciate the things you do for them.

5. This is your last chance to bond. Once your children hit the teenage years, they are out the door in the blink of an eye. Now is the time you can really start to enjoy your child as an equal and get a glimpse of the man or woman he or she will soon become. Don't miss hectic mornings and the lazy afternoons together. Enjoy watching them interact with their friends.

Megan Wallgren is a freelance writer and mother of four energetic children. She blogs about how to wear them out at kinetickids.blogspot.com.

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Why you should stay home with your teens