House Rules For Your Teenage Child: Preparing Them For Adulthood

Written by Harini Natarajan , Certified Emotional Intelligence Practitioner

Do you have teenagers at home? Then this is a crucial period in their life. This is the time when they face insecurities and pressure from their peers. This also is that time where, if they learn the right lessons, they can grow into responsible and mature adults.

Parents can teach these life lessons by establishing certain rules in the house. These not only build your teenage child’s character, but also bring the family much closer.

Here, we have listed certain house rules for your teenage child that can prepare them for adulthood. Keep reading to know more.

House Rules For Your Teenage Child: Preparing Them For Adulthood

1. Making Amends

It is okay to have little fights within your family due to any argument, disagreement, or differences. At home, you will usually see parents fighting with each other over some arguments or your children fighting with their parents due to their inability to understand them. Teenagers must be taught that it is okay to agree to disagree. Normalize disagreements and encourage healthy conversations. Making amends as well as taking responsibility for hurting someone is crucial.

Make sure your kids apologize and own up when they make a mistake – this will help them become aware of their own actions and thoughts.

2. Being Independent

Parents must encourage and push their children to do their own work by themselves. Simple tasks like keeping their dishes in the sink, putting their clothes in the closet, or storing their own toys away must be encouraged. Being independent at home will help them understand the importance of self-reliance and cleanliness.

3. Learning To Take A No

Children and teenagers are not very good at taking No for an answer even when it is necessary and valid. Saying no to a child might sound harsh, but it helps them set boundaries for themselves that will help in their growth and development. After declining your child’s demand, offer them a small explanation as to why you didn’t cave into their want and leave them to think about it. Teaching your teenage child to take no for an answer will also prepare them to accept that they would not always get what they seek or want. The sooner they learn this truth, the better.

4. Sharing

Teens should be constantly reminded about the importance of sharing. Sharing is a social skill that we all should adopt as it helps us understand compromise and cooperation, and encourages helping people. In a household situation, teens should be encouraged to share their toys or games with their siblings, or their favorite food with other members of their family.

5. Asking Before Borrowing

No matter how close your teenage child may be to someone, they do not own the other person’s belongings. Hence, they must be taught to ask before using other’s personal belongings. They also must be taught to return anything to their rightful owners. Borrowing without asking can be disrespectful and a violation of personal space. Do not encourage this habit in teens.

6. Taking On Chores

Household chores like doing the laundry, cleaning, cooking, etc. are life skills that will test your teenager’s survival abilities when they move out. Making your child do chores is an excellent way of teaching them self-reliance, planning, time-management, and teamwork. Teenagers should be given simple chores like walking the dog, laying the table, and doing the dishes. The assignment of chores must be made mandatory and followed without excuses.

7. Maintaining Personal Cleanliness

The importance of cleanliness should be fostered in the minds of children at a young age. Maintaining a clean and healthy environment promotes better physical and mental health and keeps unwanted illnesses at bay. Most teens are not very good at maintaining cleanliness within their personal space – they tend to keep their room messy and unkempt. Hence, it is important you supervise your child’s cleaning and organizing habits. Ensure they are making their bed and changing sheets, keeping their clothes folded and stacked in the closet, avoiding clutter, replacing household items in their respective places, and occasionally cleaning their rooms and bathrooms.

8. Managing Their Emotions

Teenage years can be overwhelming and your teenage child might go through various emotional ups and downs. Teaching your child the importance of handling conflict and emotions is crucial. They must know how to regulate their emotions. Teach your children that no conflict can be resolved by shouting, screaming, or being rebellious. You also can teach them to take their space when they are angry and talk about issues after cooling down. At home, they also must be encouraged to healthily express their emotions and not suppress them.

9. Limiting Their Screen Time

Most teenagers tend to while away their time scrolling through social media and surfing through the internet. As a parent, it is very important to regulate the time your child spends looking at a screen, as social media can become an addiction and bear heavy consequences on their well-being and development.

Set a time limit to their use of any electronic gadgets. You can also encourage them to have real-life communication with friends and family and teach them the importance of being present.

You also must prohibit the use of mobile phones during family gatherings or at the dinner table. Emphasize on the importance of physical training and other creative activities.

10. Understanding Ethics And Morality

Ethics and morality are critical for a peaceful and productive society. Instilling these values in your teenage child can help them grow into responsible adults. While the topic could be heavy, it is important they are taught about it.

Make it clear that you won’t entertain any form of disrespect from your teenage child. Teach them the importance of keeping commitments and promises. You also must teach them why honesty is critical – and gently, but firmly, encourage them to practice honesty at all times.

11. Following A Curfew

Curfews for teenagers may sound dictatorial. But, on the contrary, curfews help in developing discipline in children that will eventually give them more freedom. Most teenagers have unstructured routines, sleep deprivation (or excess sleep), and poor time-management skills. A curfew will help young teens understand the value of time and how to adjust to a routine. Having a timely schedule and respecting time constraints will help them meet deadlines at school and get their work done at their workplace. They will also learn to respect other people’s time too. Make sure to prioritize your teenager’s activities around their growth and well-being.

12. Monitoring Their Habits

Teenagers are easily influenced by their peers and may pick the wrong habits quite easily. It is very common to notice young teens indulging in vices like smoking, drinking, and drugs. It is important to have a check if your teenager is indulging in any such activities. Be firm with them and empower them to pick the right habits. Teenagers must also be taught to be aware of their habits and monitor them.

13. Keeping The Parents Informed

It is very important to ensure your teenage child seeks your permission and informs you before heading out. As parents, it is your duty to care about the safety and well-being of your child. While freedom is not to be restricted, these rules apply purely for their safety and added responsibility.

These are a few important roles to be followed in a family. But why should a family have rules? How will they help the teenagers?

Importance Of Family House Rules For Teenagers

  • Family rules help mold and craft the mindset of the child and prepare them for the outside world.
  • Children learn the behaviors that are acceptable and those that aren’t.
  • Following family rules help children follow rules in the outside world, thereby allowing them to live responsibly and propagate peace.
  • Family rules help teenagers cultivate different virtues like discipline, consent, and compromise, and help them face the reality of the world.
  • Rules help enrich the bond between the family members.


Family rules are applied to all family members and help teenagers transition into adulthood smoothly. The rules teach them virtues crucial for leading a healthy life. These are not imposed to restrict the freedom of a child or strain their independence. Instead, they are designed to let them learn how to be responsible and independent. Start implementing these rules at your home today and see your teenage children grow up to become confident, responsible, and caring human beings.

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