- Step 1: Pick your battles Pick your battles. If the only rule your child is breaking is good taste, let it slide.
- Step 2: Be respectful Be respectful of their preferences – in music, clothes, hairstyles, romantic partners, or anything else. You don't have to agree with them, but you don't have to be insulting, either.
- TIP: Try listening to some of their music. You never know; you may like it!
- Step 3: Listen When your child wants to talk, stop whatever you're doing and really listen, no matter how late it is or how tired you are. And keep an open mind: Even when you overrule them, at least they'll feel they were heard, and that your decision wasn't arbitrary.
- Step 4: Welcome their friends Make their friends feel welcome in your home. Just make sure you know exactly what they're doing under your roof.
- TIP: Be aware that letting your children's friends drink alcohol in your home does not make you cool, it makes you a criminal.
- Step 5: Be the adult Lay down the law when necessary. Better that they resent you now for disciplining them than wonder down the line why you didn't protect them when they got into trouble.
- Step 6: Realize being cool makes you uncool Realize that, in the end, kids don't really want parents who are too "cool"; they want -- and need -- parents to be parents.
- FACT: OK Magazine readers voted Halle Berry "Coolest First-Time Mom" in 2008.
You Will Need
- Listening skills
- Common sense