Scenario: raising a difficult issue

In this scenario, Jack comes home from school smelling of cigarette smoke. His mum is concerned.

Option 1: let it go

One option is to let the behaviour go. This might show that you respect your child's privacy and help you avoid conflict with your child. But you might also miss an opportunity to communicate your concerns and expectations. See how.

Let it go: parents and teens comment

Here's what parents and teenagers think of the approach of letting the behaviour go.

Option 2: talk it over

You might choose to share your concerns about the difficult issue with your child. If you can avoid being critical, judgmental or emotional, it can encourage your child to talk, setting the scene for good communication about the issue. See how.

Talk it over: parents and teens comment

Here's what parents and teenagers think of the approach of talking it over.

Option 3: find out

If you want to find out what's going on, you might choose to confront your child about the difficult issue or behaviour. There's a risk with this approach. You might end up in a conflict about your behaviour rather than a conversation about your child's behaviour. See what happens.

Find out: parents and teens comment

Hear what parents think of a confrontational approach to raising a difficult issue with teenagers.