As parents (particularly) communicating with a teenager can be a challenge. Parents compete with friends, technology and screens, and just about ANYTHING else that an adolescent would like to do besides chat with mom or dad. It can be difficult to have the time to talk.
Several parents have experimented with this recently, and they have shared with me some of their insights:
"The best conversation I had with (my son) was when I was teaching him how to parallel park. We were stuck in the car, so we really had to hear each other out"
"I only get a few minutes to talk with her, and so when she's in the back seat, I have to be careful not to unload everything I wanted to tell her, but when I do talk, we seem to fight less."
One solution that parents I work with have found helpful, is to use time in the car to talk. There are a number of reasons why this seems to be more effective than a lecture or "discussion" at home or elsewhere:
It's important to ask questions (preferably open-ended), not lecture or scold, be open to responses, and if your child or teenager decides not to interact, let her (or him) know that if you don't get his or her input, that you will have to make decisions on your own, based upon what you think.
Of course you should minimize your own distractions and be safe while driving, especially with passengers.
I really like this article from Kelly Wallace at CNN that I read a few years ago:http://www.cnn.com/2014/02/19/living/talking-to-teens-communication-parents/