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Parents Navigating the Teen Years

Dec 6, 2021

Christa D'Amico, CAGS, NCSP, is a NH Licensed School Psychologist who works at Winnacunnet High School in Hampton, NH. Ms. D'Amico partners with families, teachers, school administrators, and other professionals to create a safe, healthy, and supportive learning environment that strengthens connections between home, school, and the community.

Ms. D'Amico understands that parents want to help their teens and help them with their problems, but that might not always be the best approach. In this episode, Christa shares tips and advice on how parents can teach their children to be more resilient and self-aware when they're managing times of high stress.


Key Takeaways

  • How does safety and relationships play a key part in managing a teen's feeling of being overwhelmed?
  • Teens get stuck in the emotional side of their brain. Adults are typically able to move out of this area more effectively.
  • It's our job as parents and teachers to help teens feel safe.
  • We shouldn't underestimate the impacts COVID and isolation has had on our children.
  • The three ways to help your teen with overwhelm is: Help them feel safe, make sure they feel heard, and notice their distress.
  • As parents we want to protect our child no matter what, but there's a fine balance on how to best do this.
  • When having tough conversations, remember to talk less and listen more. Try not to fix anything. Just listen to understand.
  • How do we help our teen become more self-aware?
  • Some children struggle with regulating their emotions. It's important to identify this early on and be attuned to their needs.  


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Smart but Scattered series 



“When we're feeling stressed and when we're feeling fear, we are vulnerable. We have no capacity to think straight.” 


“When you're having important conversations, make sure you talk less and listen more.” 


“Where are your strengths and weaknesses? We all have them and there’s nothing wrong with them.”