SALT LAKE CITY, UT (Good Things Utah) – Your kids change as they grow up, and how you parent them should too. All different parenting styles have something special to offer. Abbi Winslow, life coach for teens, gave us some insight on popular techniques for parenting teens.

Gentle parenting is very popular online right now. Relying on empathy and self-awareness to change your child’s behavior, it strays away from the common ideas of discipline and punishment. In gentle parenting, you communicate with your kids to make them more aware of their actions and behavior. Abbi calls gentle parenting “firm but kind”. As your teens age, they want to be respected and treated as an adult, but you still need to parent them. For example, if you experience pushback from your kid on a strict curfew time, remind them calmly that they need to be back at the set time and there will be consequences if not. If you are confident in your parenting, there’s no need to fight. Be firm and kind in setting these boundaries.

Sitting parenting is a happy middle between helicopter parenting and free-range parenting. You let your child do what they want to, and you sit and observe. You don’t need to control what they do, but you are there to help when you are needed. An easy way to implement sitting parenting with your teens is setting boundaries on technology use. Set the family standard that you all have each other’s locations and text each other when you arrive at certain destinations. Make them aware of your presence and verify your trust in them. You’re not controlling your child’s life, but you are sitting in on it.

Authoritative parenting gets a bad rap online, but that is because it is misunderstood. It is a parenting style based on love, respect, and family democracy that still uses traditional ideas of punishment for behavior correction. Authoritative parenting makes a clear distinction between the separate roles of parents and children. Parents tend to make the mistake of becoming their kid’s best friends when their first responsibility should be to parent them.

Snowplow parenting is defined as a parent who plows down any opposition or discomforts your child is feeling. Snowplow parents fix their kid’s problems instead of guiding their children through them themselves. which makes it not the best style to use. Even though it is not the best, it tends to sneak into everyone’s parenting style from time to time. Snowplow parenting can look like taking over and reaching out to a teacher when your kid gets a bad grade. Instead of plowing into the issue, let your child know you are there to guide them through opposition when it happens. Provide your love and support rather than taking away the hard thing.

With all these different parenting styles, there isn’t one that is perfect. They all have their positive sides and learning to take parts from each style and apply it to your parenting can make the styles best work in your life. Abbi’s best advice is to figure out your own style rooting on what these have to offer. Abby has more fantastic advice on her website, Instagram, and YouTube. She recently launched an Etsy shop with worksheets and other tools to help communicate with your kids. Check out everything she has to offer!