The Argumentative Teen

Imagine that the bicycle you are riding suddenly transforms into a high-powered motorbike. After recovering from the initial shock, you would be tempted to push the motorbike to its limit and see what it can do. The same is happening in your teen’s brain during puberty.

When your child enters puberty, his brain undergoes an upgrade. It now works faster and more efficiently. Intellectually, he no longer thinks concretely but is developing the ability to think in a more abstract and logical way. What that means is that he is starting to see alternative explanations to different ways of doing things. He probably has always been argumentative, but now he’s even more assertive. He will openly challenge your views and freely express his views to you.

If you are not aware of what’s happening to your teen’s brain, you would probably view such expressions as “talking back” and start to correct your teen. As a result, every conversation easily turns into an argument. 

To avoid this, seek to better understand the adolescent phase. By attending the Parenting the Teen Years workshop you will learn how to more effectively communicate with your teen, and resolve issues collaboratively. Find out more on our programmes page. See you at the workshop!

By Parcsen Loke, Family Life Coach, Centre for Fathering. If you wish to contact Parcsen, please make an appointment at:

Food for Thought: Your teenager and you will not always see eye to eye about things. What is one thing that you both disagree most about, and how have you tried to resolve your differences?