Building Independence and Self Worth in Teens

Date: August 15, 2013
Time: 10 a.m. - 12 noon
Location: MSU Extension Kent County, 775 Ball Ave NE, Grand Rapids MI 49503
Contact: Holly Tiret,, 616-336-8998

Fostering Independence in Teens

The years of adolescence provide the time for teens to gradually prepare to take charge of their own adult lives. Parents can practice a number of positive actions to help teens handle their freedom with responsibility. Teens need to develop positive assets that will enable them to use their freedom with wisdom and responsibility. Responsibility and decision making are both internal assets important for healthy development of teens. The purpose of this session is to help parents gradually give up control and allow teens to become independent.

The objectives are:

  • Explore the relationship between teen development and the need for independence.
  • Develop a plan to gradually increase teen's freedoms and responsibilities.
  • Identify direct and indirect methods to facilitate positive teen assets of planning, making decisions, considering others and other skills of responsibility.


Teens who feel like they are worth something are less likely to feel worthless. This session is intended to help parents understand the importance of love, support and encouragement in nurturing adolescent self-esteem. It helps parents find concrete ways to provide teens with a caring and supportive family environment which, in turn, fosters health self-worth.

The objectives of this session are:

  • Explain the significant role of parental love, support and encouragement in strengthening a teen’s esteem both of self and others.
  • Identify specific ways to show caring, support and encouragement.
  • Practice communication skills in order to respond to teens and affirm their worth.

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