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Your family is where you belong, and being part of a family should help you feel safe and confident. You may not be related by blood, but your family is where you feel loved, looked after and respected.

Families aren't always easy

As a teenager you might sometimes find family life challenging. Whatever your age, if you live with other people you can never agree all of the time. Sometimes you’ll argue, but that’s normal and good, as long as you make up at the end of the day.

It’s great to hang out and do stuff together as a family. A healthy home life helps you cope with challenges when you step outside. Often simple is best. Think about:

  • watching television or a film and sharing some sweet/savoury treats
  • preparing and eating a meal together
  • going out somewhere together. It might only be for a walk, but it’ll be fun
  • switching off your phones, talking together and finding out what each other’s really thinking

What won’t help you is you:

  • shutting yourself away in your bedroom and refusing to come out
  • never talking or sharing what’s on your mind with your family
  • arguing, refusing to say sorry and not getting things back on track
  • relying on friendships that happen online

Out of your control

Sadly families do hit rough patches now and again. Issues like arguments, separation, divorce, bereavement, parental mental health issues, domestic abuse, sexual, drug or alcohol abuse can impact your family. It’s important to remember you’re not to blame when your family, and in particular your parents, are struggling.

If things are challenging at home, then it’s even more important that you’ve made good friends and looked after these relationships, so your friends are there for you when you need them most.

Top tips for getting help

Person illustration Never, ever think you are to blame for what’s going on at home.
You may find your parents difficult or embarrassing at times, but they accept you as you are, so do the same for them.
Sorry illustration

Don’t be too proud to say sorry. An apology is a powerful tool..

More helpful info

If you’re finding your relationship with your parents hard work, take a look at this web page.
If you’re older and struggling with problematic parents and how to get on, take a look at this web page

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