Tough love

Jimmy Skaaland, Staff Writer

     Tough Love is an issue that some teenagers are faced with.  It can be hard to understand because it’s not a way of discipline that has always occurred in a person’s life, it is usually set off by multiple incidents or even just one.  Tough love is not the sort of punishment that is caused by coming home after curfew or by not doing your chores; usually it involves alcohol and or drugs.  Whichever it may be, it causes parents to feel like they can no longer take everything their child tells them as the complete truth.  This can be frustrating to many teenagers but if you are in this type of situation, you must realize that it was your own actions that got you there.  

     Tough love parenting is meant to teach children that certain behavior will not be tolerated.  At the same time it’s telling the teenager that their parents are still there for them, and love them but are going to require them to work within the boundaries and rules that have been set up.  Some parents will take their actions to the extreme by sending their kids to boarding schools or rehab, which help teens realize that they do have a problem, which many won’t admit to.  Another way parents deal with this is by going to a family psychologist where all members of the family can openly voice their feelings in a neutral environment and learn that compromises can be made to make both sides feel like progress has been made.   

     Many students here at East Lake High School have been on the receiving end of tough love.  One such student said, “The first time I got in trouble was spring break of last year; several things happened after that which all lead to me being in a tough love position.  I’m still going through it, but now I am definitely more straightforward with my parents because I’ve learned that the truth always comes out.”

     Tips to help show your parents that you are doing your best to stay out of trouble are being open about where you’re going, what you’re doing there, who you are going with, and letting your parents get to know your friends.   In the end the only things you can do to get out of receiving tough love is by being honest with people and straightening out your behavior.