How Tennessee parents can keep kids from the wrong crowd

Parents whose kids are spending time with delinquents should know how to approach the situation in a way that is truly effective and productive.

Sometimes, it can be challenging for kids to make friends, but when they do, their new friends might not be a positive influence on them. Tennessee parents who are worried their child's new friends might cause him or her to end up needing a juvenile defense attorney should take heed to some advice about how to help their kids stay out of trouble.

Know that it might just be a phase

One of the first things parents should realize is that sometimes, kids purposefully rebel against their parents. While this is no excuse for hanging with equally rebellious friends, it is something parents need to know. Such actions can be a phase, and children might realize on their own what it means to have healthy friendships.

Approach the situation from different angles

Rather than telling children over and over that their new friends are a bad influence, it is much more productive to come at the situation from different angles, offering evidence and examples of why the child's friends are not good for their well-being as well as what might happen if the child continues to spend time with her or his new friends. Most importantly, parents should make it plain that their concern and words come from a place of love and caring.

Think about where the fault really lies

Sometimes, parents fail to acknowledge their children are growing up, which can result in them acting out if they feel mom and dad are not allowing them to take on more responsibility that is appropriate for their age. Parents should see if the current rules and regulations they have in place are a good match for the child's current age and maturity level.

Establish boundaries

When kids are especially rebellious, parents sometimes have no choice but to set strict boundaries. This can include limiting the amount of time the child spends with bad friends, or not allowing the child to see her or his new friends at all if parents know for a fact the friends break the law or face criminal charges. Parents should also be prepared to punish their children should they violate boundaries.

Ask kids what they want

Rather than constantly berate their children, parents should take out the time to ask them what they want and expect from their new friends. This information can better inform parents and help them understand how to best proceed with the situation and help them better understand their children.

Tennessee parents whose kids have fallen into bad company might need the help of a legal expert. Meeting with an attorney can go a long way in keeping kids and their futures out of serious legal trouble.